The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) is the international governing body for the sport of athletics. It was founded on 17 July 1912 at its first congress in Stockholm, Sweden by representatives from 17 national athletics federations as the International Amateur Athletics Federation. Since October 1993, it has been headquartered in Monaco.
Beginning in 1982, the IAAF passed several amendments to its rules allowing athletes to receive compensation for participation in international athletics competitions. However, the IAAF retained the word "amateur" in its name until its 2001 Congress at which the IAAF's name was changed to its current form.
The IAAF's current president is Lamine Diack of Senegal. He became Acting President shortly after the death of the previous president, Primo Nebiolo of Italy in November 1999, and was elected President at the 2001 Congress.
In 2015 IAAF hit controversy when it was revealed that a third of medals (146, including 55 golds) in endurance events at the Olympics and World Championships between 2001 and 2012 were won by athletes who have recorded suspicious drug tests, but the IAAF had caught none of them. Scientific expert Parisotto said: "Never have I seen such an alarmingly abnormal set of blood values. So many athletes appear to have doped with impunity, and it is damning that the IAAF appears to have idly sat by and let this happen." The World Anti-Doping Agency said that it was "very disturbed by these new allegations" and would investigate.
The IAAF has a total of 212 member federations (it had been 213 but at the November 2010 meeting of the IAAF Council it was announced that the Netherlands Antilles would cease to exist independently) divided into 6 area associations.