About this information portal

International standards are critical to global economic development in all industry sectors. The language industry is by no means an exception particularly given the massive changes that have taken place in information technologies in recent years. The language industry faces formidable challenges of increasing demands for larger and larger quantities of information, in more and more languages, all electronically interchangeable and easily retrievable. Technology is widely regarded as key to meeting these challenges. The technology must be based on standards in order to be adopted on a global scale. And national players such as Canada's language services, educational institutions, and technology suppliers need to support international standards for process and quality to compete in global markets.

This information portal describes some standards and standards organizations that could be important to the language industry, specifically in the areas of content development (authoring), content management, translation, interpreting, terminology, lexicology, language training and language assessment. It focuses on the key relevant standards in these areas and does not claim to be an exhaustive study of all language-related standards. With a few exceptions, standards dating prior to 2000 were not included because they were assumed to be no longer relevant, particularly for technical standards. In addition, some of the resources described are not actually formal standards, but may refer to internationally-recognized guidelines and best practices, or resources that are required to implement standards. Whenever possible, it is indicated whether the reference refers to a standard, a guideline, or another type of resource.

Several standards in the areas of content modelling, business modelling, and Web services have been added as there are relationships between these standards and other fields of the language industry such as terminology. However, these areas have not been covered completely as they are outside of the scope of this project.

Since standards projects are constantly taking shape, this portal does not claim to be exhaustive in its coverage, and will be updated on a regular basis.

The first topics demonstrate that supporting international standards and recognised best practices is a key requirement for technology development and global competitiveness, and provides some general information about standards for the language industry. The main organizations that produce standards and guidelines for the language industry are then briefly described. Following this are the descriptions of the standards and guidelines themselves, organized along industry lines.

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