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authority records
Corporate body

International Civil Aviation Organization

  • Corporate body
  • 1947-04-04 -

“The consequence of the studies initiated by the US and subsequent consultations between the Major Allies was that the US government extended an invitation to 55 States or authorities to attend, in November 1944, an International Civil Aviation Conference in Chicago. Fifty-four States attended this Conference [at the] end of which a Convention on International Civil Aviation was signed by 52 States. [The Convention] set up the permanent International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) as a means to secure international co-operation [for the] highest possible degree of uniformity in regulations and standards, procedures and organization regarding civil aviation matters. At the same time the International Services Transit Agreement and the International Air Transport Agreement were signed" (International Civil Aviation Organization, Foundation webpage).

An Interim Agreement was also signed at the Chicago Conference which established a Provisional International Civil Aviation Organization which existed from August 1945 to April 1947 at which point, with the 26th ratification of a member state, the ICAO formally came into existence (International Civil Aviation Organization, Foundation webpage).

“From the very assumption of activities of PICAO/ICAO, it was realized that the work of the Secretariat, especially in the technical field, would have to cover two major activities:
-those which covered generally applicable rules and regulations concerning training and licensing of aeronautical personnel both in the air and on the ground, communication systems and procedures, rules for the air and air traffic control systems and practices, airworthiness requirements for aircraft engaged in international air navigation as well as their registration and identification, aeronautical meteorology and maps and charts. For obvious reasons, these aspects required uniformity on a world-wide scale if truly international air navigation was to become a possibility. Activities in these fields had therefore to be handled by a central agency, i.e. ICAO headquarters, if local deviations or separate developments were to be avoided;
-those concerning the practical application of air navigation services and facilities by States and their coordinated implementation in specific areas where operating conditions and other relevant parameters were comparable.”
(International Civil Aviation Organization, Foundation webpage).

International Commission for a History of the Scientific and Cultural Development of Mankind

  • Corporate body
  • 1950-1969

In 1946 those attending the meeting of the first Preparatory Commission of UNESCO agreed that it was part of fundamental mission of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization to lay the foundations for a collective memory of humanity and of all its parts, spread all over the world and expressing themselves in every civilization. From December 12 to 16 1949 a Committee of Experts prepared a plan of the Scientific and Cultural History of Mankind. The International Scientific Commission with the apparently gigantic task of drafting a History of the Scientific and Cultural Development of Mankind came into being four years later, when the 5th General Conference (Florence, Italy, June 1952) decided to undertake the publication of the history. Publication of the six volumes began in 1963, marking the successful conclusion of an international endeavour without parallel, but not without risks. Success with general public was immediate and lasting, notwithstanding the reservations expressed by the critics, who often found certain choices disconcerting but were not consistent in the choices and interpretations they proposed as alternatives. UNESCO published a completely revised edition in the 1980s and a third edition in 2009.

International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation. Permanent Committee on Arts and Letters

  • Corporate body
  • 1931-1946

The desire to establish a Sub-Committee on Arts and Letters was mentioned by Jules Destrée at an International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation (ICIC) meeting in July 1925. The Sub-Committee was created in 1926, and the corresponding International Institute of Intellectual Cooperation (IIIC) Sections were founded that same year: the Arts Section and the Letters Section. The IIIC helped to execute the program established by the Committee.

The Sub-Committee on Arts and Letters counted among its members prestigious authors and artists, among them Paul Valéry, Thomas Mann, Henri Focillon, Jules Destrée, John Galsworthy, Salvador de Madariaga, Béla Bartók, and Karel Čapek. From 1931, the Sub-Committee was upgraded and adopted the name “Permanent Committee on Arts and Letters”, with Destrée as Chairman. The Committee had no fixed number of members; in 1932, for example, there were nineteen members.

The first projects of the Committee on Arts and Letters were to pursue a survey by the ICIC on the condition of intellectual and artistic life in the countries affected by the war, to investigate options for collaboration in the fields of music, literature and art, and to consider cinema as an element of the arts.

The Sub-Committee played an active role within the IIIC and allowed for the creation of new institutions: the International Museums Office (IMO) (1927–1946) and the International Committee of Popular Arts (1928–1964).

At the suggestion of Paul Valéry and Henri Focillon, the Committee organised “interviews”, gathering principle intellectuals of the time in order to stimulate discussion and reflection on various questions: "Entretiens sur Goethe" (Frankfurt/Main, 1932); "L’Avenir de la culture" (Madrid, 1933); "L’Avenir de l’esprit européen" (Paris, 1933); "L’Art et la réalité" et "L’Art et l’Etat" (Venice, 1934) ; "La Formation de l’homme moderne" (Nice, 1935); "Vers un nouvel humanisme" (Budapest, 1936); "Europe-Amérique latine" (Buenos Aires, 1936); "Le Destin prochain des Lettres" (Paris, 1937). The Committee also issued “correspondences”, published by the IIIC: "Pour une Société des Esprits" (1933); "Pourquoi la guerre ?" (letters between Albert Einstein and Sigmund Freud, 1933); "L’Esprit, l’éthique et la guerre" (1934); "Civilisations" (1935).

International Computation Centre

  • Corporate body
  • 1951-1974

The International Computation Centre (ICC) was created after a series of resolutions by the United Nations Economic and Social Council and UNESCO between the years 1946 to 1951. In 1951, a Conference for the Establishment of the ICC was held and resulted in an International Convention creating the Centre. However, it was not until November 1961 that the ICC began operations as an organization autonomous from UNESCO.

At the end of 1969, the objectives of the Organization were modified to take into account significant technological changes. Through these changes, the ICC was to transform into a new organization to be called the Intergovernmental Bureau for Informatics. The transformation happened in three stages, during which the ICC became known as ICC-IBI (1971-1972), then IBI-ICI (1973-1974), until the VII General Assembly in December 1974 when the organization officially transformed to the IBI.

International Council for Philosophy and Humanistic Studies

  • Corporate body
  • 1948-

In September 1947 Julian Huxley, the first Director-General of UNESCO, decided to ask a group of experts from different countries and from different fields of knowledge to investigate how UNESCO could comply with the duties laid down by its constitution in the domain of humanistic studies.
The preparatory committee of a common organism for humanistic studies met in 1948. Its task was to define the relationship of the organism-to-be with UNESCO, and its aims were to keep ICPHS's autonomy, to concentrate on tasks of international interest and insure that its character remained strictly scientific. The composition of the Council was to guarantee its Non-Governmental (NGO) nature.
The first general assembly of the International Council for Philosophy and Humanistic Studies met in January 1949. A supporting organ for a multi-disciplinary and international vocation, ICPHS was conceived as the intermediary between UNESCO on one hand, and learned societies and national academies on the other. Its aim was to extend UNESCO's action in the domain of humanistic studies.
Among its initial activities, in 1949, a first analysis of national-socialism was prefaced by ICPHS's first president, Jaques Rueff. This collective study had been prescribed in 1948 by the UNESCO General Conference, but had met with reticences about its publication.
Its status of non-gouvernemental organisation in UNESCO granted the advantage of freeing it from sometimes insurmontable political matters. Hence scientists from countries that were not represented at UNESCO could make themselves heard and be kept informed of worldwide works thanks to ICPHS.

International Educational Cinematographic Institute (IECI)

  • Corporate body
  • 1928-1937

An International Congress of Cinematography, organized by the International Commission for Intellectual Cooperation, was held in Paris in 27 September - 3 October 1926. The idea for an International Educational Cinematographic Institute was discussed at this meeting, but proposals for such an institute were being advanced even before 1925. At the end of the 1926 meeting, an international preparatory commission was established to study how such an international body should be organized. In April 1927, a European Conference on educational film was held in Bâle, Switzerland. One of the results of this conference was a resolution to establish a new permanent committee to be based in Rome to replace the former preparatory commission. Soon after, the Government of Italy proposed to the General Assembly of the League of Nations to establish and finance an International Educational Cinematographic Institute that would be under the direction of the League. After reviews of the proposed statutes carried out by the League and several of its organs, the General Assembly approved the project on 30 August 1928.
The governing bodies of the Institute were: a Board of Directors; a permanent Executive Committee; and a Director. There was also a Budget Commission to oversee financial matters. The Board of Directors met once a year and was composed of a President and fourteen members to be named by the Council of the League of Nations from members of the International Commission on Intellectual Cooperation (CICI) and the League of Nation’s Committee for the Protection of Children. The Italian member of the CICI served as President of the Board. Members of the League of Nations could make proposals to be considered by the Institute through the members of the Board of Directors. The Institute submitted a report of its activities to the Council of the League of Nations and the Government of Italy once a year.
IECI’s Statutes were modified in 1933 in the face of financial difficulties. The membership of the Board of Directors was reduced to twelve.
The mandate of the IECI was to encourage the production, dissemination and exchange of educational films in order to promote international understanding among the world’s peoples. It was also charged with the diffusion of best practices in the use of film for educational purposes. The statutes called for the Institute to act as an international cinémathèque, maintaining a current catalogue of educational films, and to act as an international clearing house for information on educational films.
In pursuit of its mandate, the IECI carried out the following activities through the course of its history: publication of the journals International Review of Educational Cinematograph (1929-1934), Interciné (1935) and Cinema (1936-1937); the organization of international conferences; collection of information on the associations and organizations involved in educational cinema around the world; collection of information on film in general and educational film for international dissemination; research on the influence of cinema on the intellectual development and mentality of children and youth; research on the use of film and visual imagery in teaching, including a study on the subjects best adapted for instruction through films; research on the social role of film as pastime and the use of film in propaganda and in public education; research and development of legislation concerning censorship, protection of children, copyright, conservation of films, and, in particular, work for the adoption of an International Convention on the international dissemination of educational films (adopted in October 1933 at an international conference convened by the League of Nations); studies on television; publication of the Encyclopedia of Cinematography , the first volume published in 1937; and, celebrations for the 40th anniversary of the birth of cinema.
The International Educational Cinematographic Institute was dissolved in 1937 when Italy withdrew from the League of Nations. CICI inherited some of its functions in 1938 with regards to the Interational Convention. The Comité international pour la diffusion artistique et littéraire par le cinématographe, created in 1930 and based in Paris, also pursued some of the IECI’s former activities. UNESCO, in particular in its activities in support of the free flow of information, was also a successor to the IECI.

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