IALA is a non profit, international technical association. Established in 1957, it enables marine aids to navigation authorities, manufacturers, consultants, and, scientific and training institutes from all parts of the world to exchange and compare their experiences, achievements, and technical and operational policies via participation in IALA Technical Committees.
The Committees work to create IALA Recommendations and Guidelines which are recognised worldwide as the international standards for the implementation and operation of aids to navigation. These standards help to ensure that the movements of vessels are safe, expeditious, cost effective and harmless to the environment.
The IALA Committees are at the heart of the association. The IALA Council establishes a Committee when it considers that a subject or a technical matter, relevant to the aims of IALA, needs further study, clarification or discussion. The Committees constitute an international community of experts in a particular field, who prepare and review relevant IALA publications in accordance with the IALA quadrennial work programme. They also continuously monitor specific developments; these can influence the guidance offered to the IALA membership and affect decisions made in the provision of aids to navigation. Committee meetings enable all members to share expertise and experiences and keep abreast of developments in their field.
The Committees meet twice a year at the IALA Headquarters, Saint Germain en Laye, France. As such, accepting Safer Seas invitation and holding the 17th meeting of the E-NAV Committee in Brest at Safer Seas was an exceptional decision made by IALA.
The Committee work is organised according to 5 Technical Domains, as follows :