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Our Mission

Working for a safer world

Our Mission

As the global safety science leader, UL provides the expertise, insights and services necessary to solve critical business challenges. We help our customers in over 100 countries achieve their safety, security and sustainability goals, meet quality and performance expectations, manage risk and achieve regulatory compliance.

In the course of our work we meet extraordinary people whose companies are having an extraordinary impact on the world and creating the future. UL’s rigorous scientific processes, experience and services empower our customers to innovate fearlessly and drive positive change.

We never stop working for a safer world and our services continue to evolve with advancements in science and technology.

From testing, verification and certification, training and advisory services, analytical and digital solutions - all of our offerings have one connecting thread: trust. Confidence drives commerce, and trust in the safety, quality, security and sustainability of products, services and places is essential to market access, business success and better living. UL empowers trust.

Our mission is working for a safer world. These principles drive every decision we make:

  • To promote safe, secure and sustainable living and working environments for people by the application of science, hazard-based safety engineering and data acumen
  • To support the production and use of products which are physically and environmentally safe and to apply our efforts to prevent or reduce loss of life and property
  • To advance safety science through research and investigation
  • To concentrate our efforts and resources on public safety in those areas where we can make valuable contributions
  • To work with integrity and focus on quality to enhance the trust conveyed by our certification marks and services
  • To charge fair prices that allow us to meet our obligations, sustain our growth, and invest in safety science and education
  • To invest in our people and to encourage our people to invest in themselves
  • To be a good example of corporate citizenship and social responsibility

To fulfill our mission, UL delivers business solutions and our nonprofit affiliate conducts independent research and shares scientific knowledge broadly. For more information about our nonprofit activities, visit

Our History

We are grounded in a powerful legacy

UL was born in 1894 after our founder, William Henry Merrill Jr., an electrical engineering graduate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, came to Chicago to improve the fire safety of the Palace of Electricity building at the World’s Fair. Seeing the opportunity to apply science to make possible the safe adoption and widespread use of electricity, he founded UL.

Grounded in pioneering safety science, standards creation and product certification we’ve helped safety keep pace with innovation for well over a century. We are proud of everything we have accomplished over 126 years of service to the world and remain singularly committed to our mission to promote safe living and working environments for people.

“We are doing something for manufacturers and buyers and users and property-owners everywhere – we are doing something for humanity.”

  • William Henry Merrill, Jr.