The European Centre for Standardization (CEN) is the European standards body that operates in parallel with the International Standards Organization (ISO). In January 2001, the CEN created a specific Technical Board (BT), Working Group 126 (BT/WG 126), which reports to the CEN BT. CEN WG 126 has subsequently established a number of Workshops to look into the creation of agreements for mine action that are not covered in IMAS. A CEN Workshop covering a particular subject has an agreed business plan and consists of individual experts and organisations in the related subject. The subject is discussed in meetings and research conducted until an agreement is reached by the workshop ‘experts’. A CEN Workshop for humanitarian mine action will conclude with a CEN Workshop Agreement (CWA) for humanitarian mine action which reflects the consensus of identified individuals and organizations responsible for its contents.
CWAs do not duplicate IMAS but are agreements produced in support of IMAS. If they are accepted by the IMAS Review Board, representing the mine action community, they will be included in the relevant IMAS as Normative References. This reference provides an authority for the CWA within the IMAS system. The CEN WG 126 and subsequent Workshops, in collaboration with UNMAS and GICHD, has, through open workshops, attempted to provide guidance to the manufacturers of demining equipment on test and evaluation protocols where such issues have not been addressed in the IMAS. The standards for the test and evaluation of metal detectors, or the test and evaluation of personal protective equipment (PPE), provide good examples of this work.