International Telecommunication Union

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The International Telecommunication Union (English International Telecommunication Union, ITU, Spanish and French abbreviation: UIT ), based in Geneva, is a specialized agency of the United Nations and the only organization that is officially the world and deals with technical aspects of telecommunications. She is the organizer of the World Radiocommunication Conference (World Radiocommunication Conference, WRC), which maintains the Radio Regulations Radio Regulations (English Radio Regulations, RR), and the World Conference on International Telecommunications Services ( World Conference on International Telecommunications, WCIT ), the Regulations on international telecommunications (English International Telecommunication Regulations, ITR) perpetuates.

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The ITU goes back to the established on May 17, 1865 the International Telegraph Union and is therefore, according to the 1863 founded the International Committee of the Red Cross, the second oldest international organization. Today it has 191 Member States as a UN specialized agency. My anniversary was celebrated from 1969 to 2006 every year as World Telecommunication Day or World Communications (World Telecommunication Day). After the United Nations General Assembly had decided in March 2006, 17 May also as World Information Society Day (World Information Society Day) to commit, decided in November 2006, the Plenipotentiary Conference of the ITU, from now on 17 May as World Day of communications and information Society (World Telecommunication and information society Day, WTISD ) to celebrate.

The objectives of the ITU are voting and promoting international cooperation in communications by:

  • International regulations for the use of frequencies
  • International allocation and registration of the transmit and receive frequencies
  • International radio call sign allocation of blocks, the ITU prefix
  • Coordinating the development of telecommunications equipment
  • Coordination of efforts to trouble shooting in international radio communications
  • Agreements of performance guarantees and fees

State governments, private sector companies, as well as other regional and national organizations to work together in their frames. Basis of the ITU Constitution and Convention of the International Telecommunication Union ( Geneva, 1992), the responsibilities, rights and obligations of the ITU- organs shall determine.

The official and working languages ​​of the ITU are Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish, the French text shall prevail in case of doubt or dispute. Accordingly, the Union also has six different names by which they published documents.

The parent bodies of the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference and the World Conference edit general principles and general conventions. The study groups of the ITU, however, afford the real work: edit technical issues that they discuss in regular meetings. The results will be published as recommendations ( Recommendations) and have only the acquisition by normative organizations such as ISO, ANSI or ETSI or by national regulatory authorities such as the Federal Network Agency in Germany the character of norms. The cooperation between the ITU -T with fora and consortia will A.5, A.6 and A.23 regulated (together with A.23, Annex A), particularly in the recommendations A.4.

The ITU organizes trade fairs ITU Telecom World 1971 with exhibitions and since 1985, regional trade fairs in Asia, Africa and Latin America.

Structure of the ITU

The ITU is divided into

  • ITU -D ( Telecommunication Development Sector )
  • ITU -R ( Radiocommunication Sector ), formerly CCIR
  • ITU -T ( Telecommunication Standardization Sector ), founded on 1 March 1993, formerly CCITT


One of the main tasks of the Radiocommunication Sector is the international definition of the allocation of frequency bands to radio services by the Radio Regulations for the radio service. Several radio services are reliant on the assignment of a used frequency range is valid worldwide to ensure safe operation, because the radio waves do not stop at the borders of nation states hold.


Most of the standards ( strictly speaking, "Recommendations ", English " recommendations " ) shall be adopted in the ITU by the ITU -T ( Telecommunication Standardization Sector ). These recommendations are contrary to national standards such as DIN, ANSI or RS recognized worldwide.

The areas of the ITU -T:

  • A Organization of the work of ITU- T
  • B Means of expression: definitions, symbols, classification
  • C General telecommunication statistics
  • D General tariff principles
  • E Overall network operational, telephone service, service operational and human factors
  • F Non- telephone telecommunication services
  • G Transmission systems and media, digital systems and networks
  • H Audiovisual and multimedia systems
  • I Integrated services digital network
  • J Cable networks and transmission of television, sound program and other multimedia signal
  • K Protection against interference
  • L Construction, installation and protection of cables and other elements of outside plant
  • M TMN and network maintenance: international transmission systems, telephone circuits, telegraphy, facsimile and leased circuits
  • N Maintenance: international sound program and television transmission circuits
  • O Specifications of measuring equipment
  • P Telephone transmission quality, telephone installations, local line networks
  • Q Switching and signaling
  • R Telegraph transmission
  • S Telegraph services terminal equipment
  • T Terminals for telematic services
  • U Telegraph switching
  • V Data communication over the telephone network
  • X Data networks and open system communications
  • Y Global information infrastructure and Internet protocol aspects
  • Z Languages ​​and general software aspects for telecommunication systems

Recommendations are marked with a letter for the area, a dot and a number. Similar versions are characterized for example by a trailing "to" or "ter ". Known examples of ITU- T Recommendations are V.24 ( interface lines for data transmission ), JPEG ( image compression ), H.264 (video compression) or E.164 ( international telephone numbering scheme ).

These recommendations were originally in each case after the end of the study period ( the rhythm of four years ) in individual volumes arranged by topic and assignment to study groups published; all volumes each having the same color. Therefore, the unofficial language uses the terms " Yellow Book " (1972-1976), the "Orange Book " (1976-1980), "Red Book" (1981-1984) and " Blue Book " ( 1985-1988). After the recommendations were released individually at the earliest after two consecutive plenary meetings of the relevant study group (usually nine months ). Currently, the recommendations will be published after the TAP (Traditional Approval Process ) or the AAP method (Alternative Approval Process) either. The TAP method ( after two consecutive plenary sessions ) is used when touched addition to technical additional regulatory aspects. The AAP method is used for purely technical recommendations; a publication is then already after four weeks is possible (after the plenary session the competent study group).