International Federation of
Vexillological Associations
Formation7 September 1969; 54 years ago (1969-09-07)
TypeInternational association
HeadquartersHouston, Texas, U.S.
London, England, UK[1]
51 associations and institutions[2]
Official languages
English, French, German, Spanish[1]
Željko Heimer[3] Edit this at Wikidata
Michel R. Lupant, former president of FIAV.

The International Federation of Vexillological Associations (French: Fédération internationale des associations vexillologiques; FIAV) is an international federation[4] of 53 regional, national, and multinational associations and institutions across the globe that study vexillology, which FIAV defines in its constitution as "the creation and development of a body of knowledge about flags of all types, their forms and functions, and of scientific theories and principles based on that knowledge."[5]


The study of flags, or vexillology, was formalised by Whitney Smith in 1957.[6] He then moved to organize various flag organisations and meetings including the first International Congress of Vexillology[6] in 1965[7] and International Federation of Vexillological Associations.[6]

The FIAV was provisionally organized on 3 September 1967, at the Second International Congress of Vexillology held in Rüschlikon, Switzerland, and officially created on 7 September 1969, at the Third International Congress of Vexillology held in Boston, Massachusetts, US. The vexillological symbols were created by vexillologist Whitney Smith and then adopted by the FIAV in the early 1970s.[8]


FIAV has a three-person Board consisting of a President, Secretary-General, and Secretary-General for Congresses.[1] The Board manages the current affairs of FIAV and convenes the biennial sessions of the General Assembly,[1] which are held during each International Congress of Vexillology.[9] The FIAV General Assembly is composed of a delegate from each of FIAV's members. The General Assembly elects the Board and is responsible for setting policy.[1]


The current members of the FIAV Board are:

Past officers

Office of FIAV President was previously held by:


Current members of FIAV are:[2]

Abrv. Name Country (& Territory)
AAV Argentina Vexillology Association  Argentina
ACV Catalonian Vexillological Association [ca]  Spain ( Catalonia)
BDA Burgee Data Archives  Canada
BHVS Bulgarian Heraldry and Vexillology Society [bg]  Bulgaria
BS Bandiere Storiche ONLUS  Italy
CBFA Chesapeake Bay Flag Association  United States ( Delaware,  Washington DC,  Maryland,  New Jersey,  Pennsylvania,  Virginia,  West Virginia)
CEBED Belgo-European Studies Center for Flags  Belgium
CFA The Canadian Flag Association  Canada
CIDEC Foundation Interdisciplinary Center for Cultural Studies  Argentina
CISV Italian Centre of Vexillological Studies  Italy
CONAVEX Corporación Nacional de Vexilología de Chile [es]  Chile
CVS Czech Vexillological Society [cs]  Czech Republic
DGF German Vexillological Association  Germany
FHF Flag Heritage Foundation  United States
FI The Flag Institute  UK
FOTW Flags of the World Worldwide (Based in  Canada)
FRC The Flag Research Center [es]  United States
FSA Flag Society of Australia  Australia
GHVI Institute of Genealogy, Heraldry and Vexillology  Lithuania
GSI Genealogical Society of Ireland  Ireland
GWAV Great Waters Association of Vexillology[a]  United States ( Illinois,  Indiana,  Kentucky,  Michigan,  Ohio)
HGZD Croatian Heraldic and Vexillological Association  Croatia
HS Heraldica Slovenica  Slovenia
HVK Heraldic Society "The Clover Leaf" [de]  Germany
IHW Institute of Heraldry and Vexillology [pl]  Poland
IVA Indian Vexillological Association  India
JAVA Japanese Vexillological Association  Japan
KVV Breton Vexillology Society [fr]  France ( Brittany)
NAVA North American Vexillological Association North America ( United States &  Canada)
NEVA New England Vexillological Association  United States ( Connecticut,  Maine,  Massachusetts,  New Hampshire,  Rhode Island,  Vermont)
NF Nordic Flag Society Nordic Europe ( Denmark,  Finland,  Iceland,  Norway,  Sweden)
NVvV Dutch Association for Vexillology [nl]  Netherlands
NZFA New Zealand Flag Association  New Zealand
MGD Macedonian Heraldic Society  North Macedonia
PFA Portland Flag Association  United States ( Oregon)
PH Partioheraldikot r.y.  Finland
PTW Polish Vexillology Society [ru]  Poland
RCVH Russian Centre of Vexillology and Heraldry  Russia
SAVA Southern African Vexillological Association Southern African Development Community Southern Africa ( Angola,  Botswana,  Lesotho,  Madagascar,  Malawi,  Mozambique,  Namibia,  South Africa,  Eswatini,  Zambia,  Zimbabwe)
SCHG State Council of Heraldry at the Parliament of Georgia  Georgia
SEV Spanish Society of Vexillology  Spain
SFV French Society of Vexillology  France
SGHAPG Society of Genealogy, Heraldry and Archivist "Paul Gore"  Moldova
SSV Swiss Society for Vexillology   Switzerland
SVB Belgium Vexillology Society  Belgium
SVI Flag Data Center  Czech Republic
SVPR Rotterdam Flag Parade Foundation [nl]  Netherlands
THVA Transylvanian Heraldic and Vexillological Association  Romania ( Transylvania)
UHT Ukrainian Heraldry Society  Ukraine
VAST Vexillological Association of the State of Texas  United States ( Texas)
VRCC Vexillological Research Center of China  China
VSS Vexillological Society (Singapore)  Singapore
WVRI World Vexillological Research Institute  Germany

International Congresses of Vexillology

It has been suggested that this article should be split into multiple articles. (discuss) (September 2023)

The International Congress of Vexillology is a week long biennial conference. A Congress consists of vexillology presentations, FIAV's General Assembly and flag display tours.[9]

Since 1969, FIAV has sponsored the biennial International Congresses of Vexillology (ICV) with assistance of a local organizing committee.[10] The Congresses have been held in:

ICV 30 is planned to be held in Beijing (China) in 2024.

FIAV flag

The FIAV flag was initially designed by Klaes Sierksma and slightly modified by the organizing committee of the Second International Congress of Vexillology. The flag was introduced on 3 September 1967. Its description is, "On a blue field, extending horizontally from hoist to fly, two yellow halyards forming two interlaced loops." The knot formed is a sheet bend. The color blue is defined as Pantone Matching System U293 and the color yellow is defined as Pantone Matching System U123. Flags for the three officers were approved in 1999, having been designed by the former FIAV president, William Crampton.[14]

FIAV Honours and Medals

Many awards and medals are given out to members of the FIAV or members of an FIAV associated Organization for various reasons.[15] The two medals that come with post-nominals are the LAUREATES OF THE FEDERATION who get LF and the FELLOWS OF THE FEDERATION who get FF.


  1. ^ Defunct since April 4, 2013


  1. ^ a b c d e f "FIAV Constitution". FIAV. 2009-09-11. Retrieved March 13, 2016.
  2. ^ a b "FIAV Membership List". FIAV. Retrieved August 14, 2022.
  3. ^ a b "FIAV Officers". FIAV. 2009-09-11. Retrieved March 13, 2016.
  4. ^ "About vexillology". Vexillology. The Flag Institute. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
  5. ^ "FIAV home page". Retrieved 10 February 2024.
  6. ^ a b c Vulliamy, Elsa (December 15, 2015). "Which flag is it? Take our quiz to find out". The Independent. Retrieved March 13, 2016.
  7. ^ "Consider Vexillology". SemiotiX. Semioticon. May 2013. Archived from the original on April 28, 2021. Retrieved March 13, 2019.
  8. ^ "FIAV Flag Information Symbols". Retrieved 2022-10-20.
  9. ^ a b Koziol, Michael (September 1, 2015). "World experts fly the flag in Sydney". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved March 13, 2016.
  10. ^ Mercer, Phil (14 July 2015). "What do our flags say about us?". Retrieved July 19, 2019.
  11. ^ "ICV27 - London 2017". 27th International Congress of Vexillology. Flag Institute. Archived from the original on 29 August 2019. Retrieved 9 August 2017.
  12. ^ Biediger, Shari (July 4, 2019). "Dixie Flag Stitches Banners with Pride and Patriotism". Rivard Report. Retrieved July 19, 2019.
  13. ^ "ICV29 - Ljubljana 2022". 29th International Congress of Vexillology. Heraldica Slovenica. Retrieved 15 July 2022.
  14. ^ "FIAV - Fédération internationale des associations vexillologiques". Flags of the World. 9 September 2011. Retrieved 2013-08-27.
  15. ^ "Awards and Honors". North American Vexillological Association. Archived from the original on Aug 17, 2021.