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Drafting IEC publications



Rules from the ISO/IEC Directives, Part 2

The ISO/IEC Directives, Part 2 provides clear and concise guidelines for drafting International Standards. The latest version of the directives - the seventh edition - has been reorganised in a logical manner to make finding information much simpler. The language has also been simplified and more examples have been added.


The document is divided into five distinct sections:

  • General principles, which clarifies how the document should be structured and gives linguistic guidelines;
  • Subdivisions of the document, which enumerates the various clauses that consitute a document;
  • Components of the text, which focuses on the usage of common elements such as notes, footnotes, tables and figures;
  • Policy, which gives guidance on identifying patents and on using trrademarks; and
  • A set of annexes, which includes advice for dealing with quantities and units and outlines a designation system for internationally standardized items.

In addition to the improved document structrure, there are a number of changes that come into effect that simplify the writing process and bring greater consistency between documents. The full list of these changes can be found in the foreword.


This latest edition of the ISO/IEC Directives, Part 2 is applicable to all enquiry drafts and to all final drafts registered on or after 1 October 2016.


The main content can also be found in the web section on the Directives.