UNIDO enhances its global quality tools through stakeholder engagement: QI4SD Index and Digital Maturity Assessment methodology for National Standards Bodies

Vienna, Austria, 14–17 November 2023 – Recognizing the necessity of stakeholder engagement and partnerships for achieving development results, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) successfully convened over 50 international Quality Infrastructure (QI) experts to validate two innovative tools, share knowledge and disseminate best practices. The tools – namely the Quality Infrastructure for Sustainable Development Index (QI4SD Index) and the Digital Maturity Assessment tool for National Standardization Bodies (NSBs) – promote sustainability and leverage digital technologies in the context of QI.  

Over decades, UNIDO has gained international recognition as a key player in the QI field and is acknowledged for its flexibility and capacity to provide technical assistance to address the most compelling global challenges. With climate change affecting every aspect of trade (and beyond) and advanced technologies disrupting every sector, promoting responsible trade, climate action and progress by innovation is currently a priority for the Organization. 

In this framework, the QI4SD Index, developed in close cooperation with the International Network on Quality Infrastructure (INetQI), focuses on sustainability and assesses the readiness of a country’s QI to support the SDGs. The Index aims to bridge an information gap by being the first open-source tool to explicitly measure how fit for purpose QI is in meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The information resulting from the Index will strongly contribute to the development of more effective public policies and national implementation plans as well as play a pivotal role in the coordination of technical programmes, strategic resource allocation and measurement of progress. 

Complementarily, the Digital Maturity Assessment methodology supports countries to identify the NSBs current digital status and provides guidance on how to develop a concrete action plan to achieve digitalization in this field. The aim of the methodology – already applied to NSBs of several UNIDO Member States – is to support countries in reshaping their QI systems in a more modern and innovative way. With Colombia and Peru being pilot countries, the methodology has been subsequently implemented in Ghana, Mozambique and Tanzania, and it is currently being rolled out in Albania and Ukraine.

These tools, have been validated and improved through fruitful technical discussions among experts from international organizations and national counterparts from over ten countries, including the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Viet Nam, in addition to the above mentioned ones. Therefore, they are the result of a collaborative effort of high-level QI practitioners and represent UNIDO’s contribution to achieving inclusive and sustainable industrial development (ISID), thanks to a stronger and more market-oriented QI system.

For more information, please, contact Ms. Dorina Nati, d.nati [at] unido.org