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Setting Standards: A Simulation Exercise in Strategy and Cooperation in Standardization Processes

Monday, April 8, 2019
Registration:  8:30 am
Simulation:  9:00 am-4:30 pm
Location: NIST, Administration Building 101, Heritage Room

Government Audience Only 

Setting Standards: A Simulation Exercise in Strategy and Cooperation in Standardization Processes is a fictional, but life-like exercise that focuses on the opportunities and challenges in standards setting and explores the analytical and practical skills needed to successfully engage in standards negotiations.

Established game-developer United Knowledge created "Setting Standards" in response to the growing demand for interactive, realistic, and exciting learning environments for standards education. This one-day simulation will engage participants in the politics and mechanics of standards development and negotiation.  It is an excellent skill-builder for newcomers, as well as anyone already participating in standards development activities at the national or international level.  No specific technical or standardization knowledge is required.

Under the guidance of an expert facilitator, Arjan Widlak, founder and CEO of United Knowledge, participants negotiate a standard for a fictional next generation technology and simulate a real standardization process through role-playing. Afterwards, participants evaluate and reflect on their experiences, focusing on lessons for real-life standards setting activities.

The simulation is a game, but it is "serious fun".  It is designed to be dynamic, demanding, and even frustrating – just like real life!

There is no fee to attend, but participants must register in advance no later than March 29th. To register please see the link below. Participants must arrive on time and stay for the entire exercise, as the simulation depends on each and every role.  Space is limited to 27 people. Once the class fills we will begin a waitlist.

Past participants have given this event high marks! Recent surveys included the following comments:

"Great training technique to demonstrate real world challenges and strategies to reach consensus through negotiation. Doing is much more effective in this case than lecturing."

"Provides a true-to-life feeling of what happens in standards committees"

"Great chance to get hands on experience in a real world setting."

"The simulation was very engaging."

"Having specific roles to play in the simulation made it more realistic. The simulation itself was extremely well-designed."

"Very useful and fun to play"


Register for the April 8 training


Standards Coordination Office Contacts:

Mary Jo DiBernardo – 301.975.5503; maryjo.dibernardo [at] (maryjo[dot]dibernardo[at]nist[dot]gov)

Patrice Boulanger – 301.975.3882; patrice.boulanger [at] (patrice[dot]boulanger[at]nist[dot]gov)



Created April 11, 2018, Updated November 15, 2019