Sunday, April 20, 2014
ITU-T Study Groups
Study Groups Overview

Standardization work is carried out by the technical Study Groups (SGs) in which representatives of the ITU-T membership develop Recommendations (standards) for the various fields of international telecommunications. The SGs drive their work primarily in the form of study Questions. Each of these addresses technical studies in a particular area of telecommunication standardization. Each SG has a SG Chairman and a number of vice-chairmen appointed by the World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly (WTSA).

TSAG
Telecommunication Standardization Advisory Group

Study Group 2
Operational aspects of service provision and
telecommunications management

Study Group 3
Tariff and accounting principles including related
 telecommunication economic and policy issues

Study Group 5
Environment and climate change

Study Group 9
Television and sound transmission and integrated
 broadband cable networks

Study Group 11
Signalling requirements, protocols and test specifications

Study Group 12
Performance, QoS and QoE

Study Group 13
Future networks including mobile and NGN

Study Group 15
Optical transport networks and access network infrastructures

Study Group 16
Multimedia coding, systems and applications

Study Group 17
Security

Telecommunication Standardization Advisory Group
TSAG reviews priorities, programmes, operations, financial matters and strategies for the Sector, follows up on the accomplishment of the work programme, restructures and establishes ITU-T Study Groups, provides guidelines to the Study Groups, advises the Director of TSB, elaborates A-series Recommendations on organization and working procedures.

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Operational aspects of service provision and telecommunications management
Study Group 2 is home to the numbering standard ITU-T Recommendation, E.164, which has played a key role in shaping the telecom networks of today. E.164 provides the structure and functionality for telephone numbers, and without it we would not be able to communicate internationally. In recent years SG2 has worked on ENUM, an Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) protocol for entering E.164 numbers into the Internet domain name system (DNS).

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Tariff and accounting principles including related telecommunication economic and policy issues
A key task of Study Group 3 is the complicated job of recommending some principles for the harmonization of global interconnection rates. Interconnection rates are the costs between telecommunication service providers when linking networks for the exchange of traffic. This work has become increasingly complex with the more widespread use of VoIP, and the move to IP based or next generation networks (NGN).

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Environment and climate change
Study Group 5 is the ITU-T Study Group responsible for studies on methodologies for evaluating the ICT effects on climate change and publishing guidelines for using ICTs in an eco-friendly way. Under its environmental mandate SG 5 is also responsible for studying design methodologies to reduce environmental effects, for example recycling of ICT facilities and equipment.

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Television and sound transmission and integrated broadband cable networks
ITU-T Study Group 9 carries out studies on the use of telecommunication systems for broadcasting of television and sound programs and furthermore the use of CATV networks to provide interactive video services, telephone and data services, including Internet access.

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Signalling requirements, protocols and test specifications
Study Group 11 is the 'signalling' group within ITU-T; it produces ITU-T Recommendations that define how telephone calls and other calls such as data calls are handled in the network. Previously this was mostly in the public switched telephone network (PSTN) and Integrated Services Digital Networks (ISDN). Now as operators look to align this 'circuit switched' based environment with the rapidly emerging Internet technologies, SG11's work is shifting towards Internet protocol (IP) based networks or next generation networks (NGN).

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Performance, QoS and QoE
In the ITU-T, Study Group 12 is the Lead SG on Performance and Quality of Service (QoS), a role that is increasingly important with the advent of commercial VoIP and packet-based next generation networks and terminals.

With customers expecting the QoS of traditional communication services, it is crucial to be able to measure new parameters such as packet loss and jitter, and know their user impact. Thus, recent SG12 achievements include several new and revised standards on the planning and deployment of IP-based networks.

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Future networks including mobile and NGN
Study Group 13 leads ITU's work on standards for next generation networks (NGN). Broadly speaking the phrase NGN refers to the move from circuit switched to packet based networks that many operators worldwide will undertake in the next few years. It will mean reduced costs for service providers who will in turn be able to offer a richer variety of services.

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Optical transport networks and access network infrastructures
Study Group 15 is the home of the digital subscriber line (DSL) standards that provide the broadband Internet connections for over 600 million households around the world. It also works on optical access and backbone technologies.

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Multimedia coding, systems and applications
Study Group 16 leads the ITU-T work on multimedia (MM) terminals, systems and applications, including the coordination of the studies among the various ITU-T SGs. It is also the lead study group for ubiquitous applications (“e-everything”, such as e-health and e-business).

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Security
Work on telecommunication security continues to intensify to meet today's challenges for more secure network infrastructure, services and applications. Over seventy standards (ITU-T Recommendations) focusing on security have been published. And recently added emphasis was given to the topic when attendees to a cybersecurity symposium asked ITU-T to accelerate its work in the field.

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