Strategic technologies serve as a fulcrum of geopolitical and geoeconomic rivalries between technologically advanced states. This discussion document addresses the geopolitics of international standard-setting in the context of emerging technologies that require global integration. It also suggests approaches on how India should deal with these processes. The aspects covered in the document include:
1. The role of standards in the growth and governance of emerging interoperable technologies across the globe. The broad geopolitical implications of influencing the standards-setting process.
2. Approaches for setting standards around the globe. This is in the context of China’s evolving role in influencing international standards in strategic technologies and its potential consequences.
3. The existing framework for setting standards in India and how the framework can be reinvented to match global standard requirements.
4. Bridging the gap between technology and foreign policy, keeping in mind the geopolitical aspects of technical standards. The approaches India can follow include:
• The effective use of government machinery to assess and recommend technical standards.
• Increasing India’s involvement in the working of international standards organisations.
• Using diplomatic ties for increased cooperation in the technical standards domain.