Resources and Reference Links

American Organisations:

Committee for Graphic Arts Technologies Standards (CGATS)

The goal of CGATS is to have the entire scope of printing, publishing and converting technologies represented in one national standardisation and coordination effort, while respecting the established activities of existing accredited standards committees and industry standards developers. CGATS writes standards only where the need exists and no other committee is undertaking the writing:

In the USA there are several organisations that publish specifications for printers to use as quality control targets.

  • SWOP: Specifications for Web Offset Publications:
  • SNAP: Specifications for Non Heatset Advertising Printing:
  • GRACoL: General Requirements for Applications in Commercial Offset Lithography:



Graphic Arts Technical Foundation – A membership organisation for the printing and graphics arts industries. Founded in 1924 as the Lithographic Technical Foundation, GATF supports offset lithography and other mechanical press technologies as well as the digital printing industry. Its divisions include: reseach, training, consulting, process/quality controls, publications. In 1999, it merged with the Printing Industries of America (PIA) association. The combined web site is known as the Graphic Arts Information Network (GAIN), a portal to the graphics arts industry.


Technical Association of the Graphic Arts – TAGA focuses on graphic arts systems, software and computer technology developments, as well as the more traditional areas of press, ink, and paper engineering applications.


The Association of Graphic Solutions Providers – Formerly the International Prepress Association.


The Flexography Technical Association – is dedicated solely to the flexographic printing industry with an emphasis on developing and maintaining standards of quality.

Australian Organisations:


Lithographic Institute of Australia – A leading Australian technical body for graphic communication within the publishing and communications industry.

Printing Industries

Printing Industries Association of Australia – The peak umbrella body for the Australian printing, packaging and visual communications industry with depth of good industry research.


Digital Data Delivery for Australian Publications – 3DAP is an industry group committee formed to address the needs of a totally digital production environment for the magazine publishing industry, in particular, the workflow required for computer-to-plate.

European Organisations:


The International Cooperation for the Integration of Processes in Prepress, Press and Postpress – CIP4 developed and promotes vendor independent standards for the graphic arts industry, such as the Job Definition Format (JDF).


The European Color Initiative (ECI) is a group of experts, working on device independent processing of color data in digital publication systems. ECI has been founded in June 1996 in Hamburg at the initiative of the publishing houses Bauer, Burda, Gruner+Jahr and Springer.


EUROSTANDARD/GLOBALSTANDARD is the most comprehensive, internationally recognized industry standard. The reference values are integrated in all the products with INSTRUMENT FLIGHT* technology . Within Europe System Brunner uses the registered trademark EUROSTANDARD System Brunner*, and GLOBALSTANDARD System Brunner* outside Europe.


Graphic Technology Research Association – The purpose of FOGRA is to promote research into, and the development and application of printing technology and to make the results available to the printing industry. The association has its own institute with a staff of engineers, chemists, physicists and other experts.


The purpose of the ICC is to promote the use and adoption of open, vendor-neutral, cross-platform color management systems.


IFRA is an international association for newspaper and media publishing.


PIRA is a commercial consultancy, testing and media business specialising in packaging, paper, plastics, printing and publishing. In 2004, PIRA International was acquired by Swiss owned Ciba Specialty Chemicals.


Association for the Promotion of Research in the Graphic Arts Industry. They operate the Swiss Centre of Competence for Media and Printing Technology. UGRA works on standardisations in the printing industry.


The German printing industry representative body has been a significant contributor to the instigation and development of standards based printing in Europe. It has work with FOGRA in the development and promotion of the standard to ISO level. It has also been instrumental in developing the Process Standard Offset (PSO) methodology of achieving compliance with the ISO standard 12647-2.