IOV was founded in 1979 in Oostrozebeke/Belgium - on the proposal of representatives of 22 nations, who participated in
the folk festival Krems in Austria. The organization is located in Vienna/Austria and the Secretariat General in Maria
Enzersdorf/Austria. In 1983 IOV was recognized with Status C by UNESCO and was accepted as a member of this
UN-organization. In 1990 at its 134th meeting, the UNESCO Executive Board passed a resolution to classify IOV in
category B (for information and consultative relations with UNESCO). According to the new UNESCO guidelines,
IOV maintains official relations with this organization of the UN since January 1997.

Following the adoption of UNESCO's Director-General on May 22"d, 1998, the Executive Board of UNESCO decided at its
154th session that IOV is admitted to operational relations with UNESCO in the future and can be classified in this category.


IOV is a forum for all non-governmental institutions, ministries and public offices, which deal with folk culture as well as institutes,
organizations, museums, universities, foundations, unions, associations, business organizations and other establishments as
well as for individuals, who are practically, organizationally and scientifically engaged in folk culture, folk art and the cultural heritage.