The Open Group

The Open Group is a global consortium that enables the achievement of business objectives through technology standards. Our diverse membership of more than 800 organizations includes customers, systems and solutions suppliers, tools vendors, integrators, academics, and consultants across multiple industries.

The mission of The Open Group is to drive the creation of Boundaryless Information Flow™ achieved by:

  • Working with customers to capture, understand, and address current and emerging requirements, establish policies, and share best practices

  • Working with suppliers, consortia, and standards bodies to develop consensus and facilitate interoperability, to evolve and integrate specifications and open source technologies

  • Offering a comprehensive set of services to enhance the operational efficiency of consortia

  • Developing and operating the industry’s premier certification service and encouraging procurement of certified products

Further information on The Open Group is available at

The Open Group publishes a wide range of technical documentation, most of which is focused on development of Standards and Guides, but which also includes white papers, technical studies, certification and testing documentation, and business titles. Full details and a catalog are available at

This Document

This document is The Open Group Guide: Principles for Open Digital Standards. It has been developed and approved by The Open Group.

Increased synergy among standards of The Open Group has long been a goal of the organization. At the time of writing, there is also a clear market for open standards for the digital market that is unmet by existing industry frameworks. This presents an opportunity to position The Open Group as the premier source of open standards in the digital market. This will initially be accomplished through the evolution of a combination of standards and guides including The Open Group Agile Architecture Framework™ Standard, the Digital Practitioner Body of Knowledge™ Standard, the IT4IT™ Reference Architecture Standard, and security standards. Other publications will be included as market needs and understanding evolves, and the documents change to incorporate these principles.

The audience for this document is as follows:

  • Members of The Open Group during the planning and development of standards and guides intended for this market

  • Staff of The Open Group during review processes, notably the VP Pre-Review Approval Process

  • Staff and members to portray consistent structure, definitions, and messages when communicating The Open Group position on digital standards

The high-level structure of this document is summarized as follows:

  • Introduction describes the objective of this document, an overview, and the format for the principles provided

  • Definitions includes terms and definitions used in this document

  • Principles introduces a set of business, content, and quality principles to guide the development and evolution of such standards at The Open Group

About the Author

David Lounsbury is Chief Technical Officer for The Open Group. As CTO, he ensures that the people and IT resources at The Open Group are effectively used to implement the organization’s strategy and mission, including The Open Group digital standards strategy.