World Archery was founded in 1931 in Lwow, Poland, which is now known as Lviv, Ukraine, as the Fédération Internationale de Tir à l'Arc (FITA) by delegates representing seven countries.

The mission of the international federation was to regulate archery internationally, promote participation in the sport, organise international events and regain a position on the programme of the Olympic Games, which was achieved in 1972.

Nearly a century since it was founded, World Archery has grown to more than 160 affiliated member associations representing an estimated 30 million archers around the globe. The federation organises a diverse portfolio of international events and promotes the sport through digital media and traditional broadcast partnerships as well.

World Archery’s current president is Prof Dr Ugur Erdener, who has served in the role since 2005, and its secretary general is Tom Dielen. The federation’s headquarters is located in the Olympic Capital of Lausanne, Switzerland.

Timeline: World Archery

10-16 June 2019
Picture of the 2019 Hyundai World Archery Championships.

50th championships

The 50th edition of the World Archery Championships – the pinnacle international archery event – was held in ’s-Hertogenbosch, the Netherlands.

December 2016
Picture of the World Archery Excellence Centre.

Excellence Centre

The World Archery Excellence Centre, a purpose-built facility acting as a hub for archery’s development around the globe, opened in Lausanne, Switzerland.

World Archery logo white on grey.


The Fédération Internationale de Tir à l'Arc identity was retired, and the organisation was rebranded as World Archery. The label became the official name of the federation two years later.


Strategic plan

The federation launched the first World Archery Plan, an all-encompassing strategy to promote, grow and strengthen the sport internationally, leading up to the London 2012 Olympic Games.

November 1996

Lausanne headquarters

The federation opened a permanent headquarters in the Olympic capital of Lausanne, Switzerland. The office had previously moved with each president.

7-10 September 1972

Olympic return

The federation fulfilled one of the purposes for which it was founded when archery returned to the programme of the Olympic Games in Munich. John Williams and Doreen Wilber of the USA were crowned archery’s first Olympic Champions of the modern era.

4 September 1931
World Archery’s founding meeting in 1931.


The Fédération Internationale de Tir à l'Arc (FITA) was founded in Lwow, Poland, which is now known as Lviv, Ukraine, by the following delegates representing seven countries.

  • Czech Republic: Jaroslav Fiala, Jan Horn and Beda Pilotti
  • France: Paul Demare, Gaston Ducatel and Gaston Quentin
  • Hungary: Kalman von Kenderessy
  • Italy: Attilio Battistoni
  • Poland: Captain Mieczyslaw Fularski, Jeanne Kurkowska and Bronislaw Pierzchala
  • Sweden: General J Akerman and Emil Heilborn
  • USA: JK Boles

General Charles Macquoid also attended the meeting, representing Great Britain.

Mieczyslaw Fularski of Poland convened the meeting and served as the first president. But he was obliged to resign immediately, having been promoted to the military rank of major, and was succeeded by compatriot Bronislaw Pierzchala, who served until 1939.

Image: Congress lunch at the Lwow 1931 World Archery Championships. (© Emil Heilborn)