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The International Olympic Committee is an organisation based in Lausanne Switzerland created by Pierre de Coubertin in 1894 to reinstate the Ancient Olympic Games held in Greece and organise this sports event every four yearsThe IOC receives its operating funds through advertising and merchandising Olympic memorabilia as well as through sale of rights to the media who report on the occurrences at the Olympic games


President Juan Antonio Samaranch has also been elected as Honorary President For Life


See  list of members of the IOC

History and Function

On June 23 1894 the Olympic games were re-created by Pierre de Coubertin after a hiatus of 1500 years The baron hoped to foster international communication and peace through the Olympic Games The IOC is a parent organisation intended to localize administration and authority for the Games as well as to provide a single legal entity which owns copyrights trademarks and other intangible properties associated with the Olympic games For example the Olympic logos the design of the Olympic flag the motto creed and anthem are all owned and administered by the IOC There are other organisations which the IOC coordinates as well which are collectively called the Olympic Movement The IOC President is responsible for representing the IOC as a whole and there are members of the IOC which represent the IOC in their respective countries

Host city bids

Countries which wish to host the Summer Olympic Games or the Winter Olympic Games must bid for the organisation with the IOC which has the ultimate authority of deciding where the Games will take place The IOC members representing most of the member countries vote to decide where the Games will take place Members from countries which have cities bidding to host the games are excluded from the voting process up until the point where their city drops out of the contest

IOC Members

For most of its existence the IOC was controlled by members who were co-opted which means they were selected by other members Countries that had hosted the Games were allowed two members others one or none When named they became not representatives of their respective countries to the IOC but rather to opposite IOC members in their respective countries
For a long time members of the royalty were popular targets of cooption and there are still some around like Prince Albert de Monaco and then former athletes These last 10 years the composition has evolved in order to get a better representation of the sports world Members seats have been allocated specifically to athletes International Federations leaders and National Olympic Commitees leaders
IOC members are natural persons The total number of IOC members may not exceed 115The IOC is composed of:
1 A majority of members whose memberships are not linked to any specific function oroffice; their total number may not exceed 70; there may be no more than one such member national of any given country;
2 Active athletes the total number of whom may not exceed 15, elected for eight years by their pairs during the Olympic Games;
3 Presidents or persons holding an executive or senior leadership position within IFs associations of IFs or other organisations recognised by the IOC the total number of whom may not exceed 15;
4 Presidents or persons holding an executive or senior leadership position within NOCs orworld or continental associations of NOCs the total number of whom may not exceed 15; there may be no more than one such member national of any given country within the IOC


The IOC has been involved in a number of scandals most involving members taking advantage of the bidding cities to extort financial and other rewards The most widely publicised example occurred in relation to the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City but earlier stories reported by British journalist Andrew Jennings date back decades After the Salt Lake City scandal efforts were made to clamp down on the most blatant misbehaviour of IOC delegates (who used their position as voters for the host city to extract favours from bidders for the games) and an advisory board of recently retired former athletes has been set up. Critics of the organisation believe more fundamental reform is required for instance replacing the self-perpetuating system of delegate selection with a more democratic process

See also

  • List of members of the International Olympic Committee
  • List of IOC meetings
  • International Paralympic Committee
  • List of IOC codes]

External link