International standardization for the Sharing Economy continues to progress!


The plenary meeting of ISO/TC 324 (Sharing economy) was held in Tokyo on 7 December. It was the first time in four years that the plenary was held in Tokyo. About 40 experts from Ireland, Italy, Canada, China, Malaysia, ANEC(*1) and MIA (*2) attended in person or online.

*1 European Association for the Co-ordination of Consumer Representation in Standardisation
*2 Marketplace Industry Association, Inc.

In the Working group (WG) meetings that preceded the plenary session, experts discussed various international projects that support to the development of the sharing economy industry. Projects such as “Practices of using sharing economy in the public sector” and “Examples of provider verification” were progressed, and new topics for future discussion were also raised, such as draft standards on "Measurement" and "Shared Manufacturing" relevant to the sharing economy market. The next meeting will take place in Malaysia in June 2024.

The plenary also recognized Dr. Kentaro Watanabe, project leader of ISO/TS 42501 (Sharing economy - General trustworthiness and safety requirements for digital platforms) and Mr. Yao Xin, project leader of ISO/TS 42502 (Sharing economy - Guidance for provider verification on digital platforms). They received the ISO Excellence Award was presented to them for their works as project leaders for both documents. ISO/TS 42501 helps platform operators to establish safety and reliable digital platforms and ISO/TS 42502 provides recommendations for platforms to reliably verify the persons or entities providing services.

Mr Kentaro Watanabe, ISO/TC 324/WG 2 (Operation of platform) Convener
I am very honoured to receive this prestigious award. The development of the international standard that led to the award was based on Japan's model guidelines, and I believe it was due to the international recognition of Japan's progressive initiatives, including the Sharing Economy certification scheme. I would like to thank all those involved in the development of this standard, and I look forward to contributing to the further development of the sharing economy in the future.

Mr Yao Xin, ISO/TC 324/WG 3 (Provider verification) Convener.
I sincerely appreciate the recognition and encouragement from ISO. Encouraged by this honor, I will continue to promote the standardisation and sustainable development of the sharing economy, and I thank the ISO/TC 324 team for their support and hope that together we can continue to add further value to the industry's growth.

The plenary session was followed by a workshop to exchange views on 'Opportunities and Challenges in the Sharing Economy'. Presentations were given on various topics, including sharing economy trends in different countries, public sector initiatives, links with the circular economy and the impact of EU regulations, to identify the current environment of the sharing economy and to discuss the role that international standards should play.

The speakers and themes of the workshop are as follows

  • Joji Kono (Sakai City Government Office of the Mayor Policy Planning Department Advanced Program Senior Leader), “Sharing economy initiatives promoted by Sakai City”
  • Satoshi Amanuma (CEO, airCloset), “Practices from airCloset”
  • Parul Gupta (Deputy Director, A&F, Bureau of Indian standards), “India’s Perspective: Developing grievance redressal for partners”
  • Redzuan Abdul Rahim (Director Digital Services Department Industry Development Division Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation(MDEC)), “Sharing Economy in Malaysia: Development Policies & Programmes, Issues and Challenges”
  • Monica Ibido (Technical Programme Manager, ISO), “ISO standardization, principles and stakeholders engagement”
  • Catherine Chevauché (Chair, ISO/TC 323 Circular Economy), “Potential link between Circular economy and Sharing economy”
  • Orsolya Tokaji-Nagy (Ph.D., LL.M. EU Law Professional Advisory Committee Coordinator, Lecturer, European Union Business Law) “Regulatory challenges the EU faces in terms of the sharing economy and the STR regulation”
  • Elizabeth Doucette, NASI Ireland Technical Expert; ISO TC 324 CAG/TG1/TG2 Member; EU-based Technical Consultan, “DSA: Overview & Impact on SE Platforms”

Masaaki Mochimaru, ISO/TC 324 Chair
It was the first face-to-face meeting in a long time. We were worried about how many experts would come all the way to Japan to participate in face-to-face discussions, given that it was a hybrid conference, but in fact many experts from external liaison organisations in China, Malaysia and Europe took part, and we were able to have discussions and exchange views in a way that only face-to-face meetings can. Each working group made good progress, and we were also able to discuss the framework and evaluation of the sharing economy, including the circular economy perspective, and propose new topics. We would like to continue to incorporate face-to-face meetings at least once a year.

Tomoyuki Endo, ISO/TC 324 Committee manager
I would like to thank the all delegates and a liaison representative who visited Tokyo, the experts who participated online despite late nights and early mornings, the chair and conveners who made the meeting a success, and my JSA colleagues who hosted the meeting.

Note The Japanese Standards Association is the organization responsible for operating the national mirror committee for ISO/TC 324 (Sharing Economy) .