FISU stands for Federation Internationale du Sport Universitaire (International University Sports Federation) and was founded in 1949. FISUs main responsibility is the supervision of both Summer and Winter Universiades (World University Games) as well as the World University Championships (WUC). FISUs main governing body is the General Assembly which represents the members of the organization (153 National University Sports Federations). The Governing Body elects the Executive Committee for a period of four years, which makes all the necessary decisions for the smooth running of FISU. Ten permanent commissions advise the Executive Committee in their specialised areas, simplifying its duties. FISU is funded through subscription, organising and entry fees, television incomes, and marketing activities.
The Universiades (World University Games)
The Universiade is an international sporting and cultural festival which is staged every two years in a different city and which is second in importance only to the Olympic Games. The Summer Universiade consists of 12 compulsory sports (Athletics Basketball Fencing Football Gymnastics Judo Swimming Diving Water Polo Table Tennis Tennis Volleyball) and up to three optional sports chosen by the host country. The record figures are 9,006 participants in Bangkok, Thailand in 2007 and 174 countries in Daegu, Korea in 2003. The Winter Universiade consists of 7 compulsory sports (Alpine skiing Snowboarding Nordic skiing composed of jump, cross country & combined Curling Ice Hockey Short-Track Speed Skating Figure Skating Biathlon) and one or two optional sports also chosen by the host country, and gathered a record of 2,511 participants in Torino, Italy in 2007 and a record number of 50 countries in Innsbruck, Austria in 2005.
The World University Championships
The other important sports events of FISU are the World University Championships. The spreading of university sports in the world created a new series of meetings and competitions to complete the program of the Universiade. FISU supports the competitions which represent the continuity of university sport and allow the FISU federation to be better known. The numbers of participants and sports in World University Championships are growing rapidly. For instance, in 2004, FISU organised 25 World University Championships that attracted 4,845 participants. In 2006, FISU staged 27 WUCs attracting 5,852 participants and for 2008, 29 WUCs were organized, bringing together 6,652 participants. For 2010, 29 WUCs are planned. Currently there are 32 total WUC Sports Programs: Archery Badminton Baseball Beach Volleyball Bridge Chess Cross Country Cycling Equestrian Flat Water Canoeing Floorball Futsal Golf Handball Field Hockey Karate Match Racing Orienteering Rowing Rugby 7 Savate Sailing Shooting Softball Squash Taekwondo Triathlon White Water Canoeing Waterskiing Weightlifting Woodball Wrestling.
The Universiades and Championships are open to all student athletes that have not been out of university or its equivalent for more than a year and that are between 17 and 28 years old. Any association which belongs to FISU may enter a team or an individual competitor. Entries are accepted from any country which is eligible for the Olympic Games and from any national federation which is affiliated to an appropriate International Federation.
The FISU Conference
The FISU Conference takes place at the same time as the Universiade, complementing the sporting aspect with sociological study and scientific research, thus illustrating the need to bring together Sport and the University Spirit. This FISU Conference, also entitled Conference for the Study of University Sport, tackles topics relating to the different aspects of sport and physical education.
The FISU Forum
Since, like the Universiade, the Congress is biennial, FISU wished to give students and university sport officials the opportunity to meet more often to discuss subjects involving education, culture and sport, through Forum seminars. Practically speaking, Forum seminars will take place every two years, alternating with Universiade years, and each time in a different location