Tilburg Law and Economics Center

TILEC supports and stimulates academic research on the governance of economic activity. It fosters academically path breaking and practically relevant research and aims to be a leading center worldwide.

Expert workshop on the functioning of SSOs

On 14 June 2016, TILEC held an expert workshop on the functioning of SSOs, focusing on incentives to participate in SSOs, trade-offs of different SSO governance structures and potential competition between SSOs and their alternatives, in particular their relationship with Open Source.


The event was held in an informal setting of 30 invited engineers, economists and lawyers participating under the Chatham House Rule on the premises of Tilburg University. The aim of the workshop was to enlighten researchers on the dynamics of standardization ongoing in the industry. 

  • The first session of the workshop, entitled "Company View of Standardization", discussed what factors drive standardization and how do these different factors, technological and commercial, interact within firms. Panel's speakers were Prof. Knut Blind (Professor for Innovation Economics TU Berlin and Fraunhofer FOKUS), acting also as a chair, Haris Zisimopoulos (Director, Technical Standards at Qualcomm) and Scott Mansfield (Principal Engineer in Ericsson's Development Unit IP and Broadband group).
  • The second session, entitled "Governance of Standardisation", discussed how much does SSO governance (e.g. equality of votes, composition of members, consensus building, etc.) matter in the standardization process. Panel's speakers were Prof. Rudi Bekkers (Associate Professor of Economics of Innovation and Technical Change at the Faculty of Technology Management), acting also as a chair, Christian Loyau (Director for Legal Affairs of the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI)) and Roya Ghafele (OxFirst & Oxford University).
  • The third and last session, entitled "Alternatives to Standardization", discussed alternatives to standardization, in particular, the role that open source projects play in the standardization context. Panel's speakers were Scott Mansfield (Principal Engineer in Ericsson's Development Unit IP and Broadband group), “Open Invention Network”: Mirko Boehm (Technical University of Berlin, Open Innovation Network, CEO at Endocode), Hermann Brand (Director Innovation at ETSI) and Martin Husovec (TILEC & TILT), acting as a chair.

The workshop provided its participants with great insights into how companies perceive standardization, what are the strategies that they pursue in the standardization process and how they influence the standardization outcomes.

expert workshop tilec