STANDARDIZATION AND THE UNITED STATES
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For the past decade and more, the United States, through its military departments, other agencies of government, and private organizations, has placed a considerable investment in national and international standardization. A significant portion of this effort has gone into national standardization, but, with the increasing recognition of the principle of mutual defense and economic interdependence, an ever-increasing portion of the effort has been expended to achieve international standardization. However, in spite of good intentions and the application of considerable resources to achieve standardization, the results have been limited and the program, itself, has been marked with frustration, conflict, uncertainty, ignorance, open disagreement, and confusion. This is not directly a criticism of the personnel, agencies, and organizations participating in the program- - it is more a reflection of the conditions and circumstances encountered in society and in the processes of standardization. For four years (1954- 1958) the author of this thesis was in charge of the United States Air Force international standardization effort. During that period, he became uniquely concerned with many aspects of the United States national and international standardization programs. In consideration of this experience, while the author attended the Air War College of the United States Air Force (1958- 1959) he was given authority to conduct an extensive research of the problem of standardization. Based on this research and his personal experiences, the author then prepared for the United States government a lengthy history of the problem of standardization in the United States together with a discussion of the current national and international policy, organizational, and other problems. Due to the sources of much of the information used by the author in this governmental report and the nature of some of the conclusions, the document cannot be made public. However , since there is an almost complete lack of writings in the United States on this most vital national and international subject, the author considered it worthwhile to devote this thesis to discus sing those general portions of the problem that were not of a sensitive nature. In the bibliography appended to this thesis, the author has indicated the full range of the more important documents and information sources to which he has had access. It is not thereby implied that all the cited sources have been used directly in this thesis, but the listing will serve to give the reader a feel for the base upon which the author has built this thesis.