Founded in 1980, the International World Games Association (IWGA) is the sole administrator of The World Games, an 11-day global multi-sport event held every four years.  

Recognised and supported by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the IWGA is a not-for-profit independent international organisation comprising 39 International Sports Federations.

The organisation was founded with the goal ‘to strengthen the bonds of friendship between International Sports Federations and to promote excellence in sport. For that purpose, to promote and coordinate World Championships and other competitions into an international, modern, multisport festival called World Games, to be organized at regular intervals.’

Vision, Missions and Values of The World Games

Today’s vision of the IWGA and The World Games family is to unite and develop the different communities in and through sport.

Our missions are twofold: on the one hand, we provide global exposure and a unique experience for athletes and cities. On the other side, we strive to engage with and inspire communities by promoting the positive values of sport. 

The IWGA's three key values are:


In order to achieve sporting excellence, only the best athletes from their respective sports and disciplines participate in The World Games. Thanks to the experience and knowledge of the IWGA's International Member Federations, we can provide the best experience possible for both athletes and audiences, innovating and delivering an exciting competition up to the highest standards in the international sports landscape.  


At IWGA, we believe that sports events must be economically, socially and environmentally sustainable. Only by making a sports event fully sustainable can we ensure a positive legacy for all our host cities and their inhabitants. This philosophy is reflected in the fact that a host city must not build any additional venue, accommodation or infrastructure for The World Games, instead always using existing or temporary venues. IWGA and the host cities work together to adapt every edition of The World Games to the characteristics and specific needs of the city. That mitigates at all levels the negative impact of the event for a host city, dramatically reducing the costs and maximising the positive short and long-term legacy.  


The World Games brings together athletes and fans, both international and national, under one roof. We believe that diversity and inclusion make us stronger; and that is why everybody is welcomed to be part of The World Games family, regardless of age, origin, gender or culture.  

Sport is a most powerful tool for promoting the ideals of friendship and fair play, autonomy and equality, respect and tolerance, especially among children and young people. These ideals can change the world for the better. We, the IWGA, embrace the challenge of building a more inclusive and fair society through sport.

The World Games family

The main constituents of The World Games are the International World Games Association (IWGA), the International Sports Federations (IFs) and the host cities organising the Games.

In a wider sense, The World Games family encompasses National Olympic Committees (NOCs) or National Sports Organisations (NSOs) as well as National Federations, clubs and persons belonging to the different sports, in particular athletes and their entourage, but also judges, referees, coaches and other sport officials.

As the IWGA follows the Olympic Charter, we contribute with our event and efforts to building a better world through sport.