ICA is today a loose global network of private, non-profit, non-governmental organisations, concerned with the human factor in world development. Since 1973 it has worked to develop, test and demonstrate effective approaches to personal, organisational and social transformation. See our history.
ICA:UK is one of around 30 autonomous & independent national ICAs worldwide. The Institute of Cultural Affairs International (ICAI), is an international association of member ICAs, previously registered in Brussels, Belgium and now registered in Montreal, Canada.
ICA:UK was a full and active member of ICAI until June 2006, but has not since renewed its membership to become a member of the new ICAI registered in Montreal. ICA:UK continues to be an active participant in the global network of ICAs, however - working in partnership with ICAs in Africa through our International Programme, networking regularly with sister ICAs in Europe through the annual ICA European Interchange, and collaborating with other national ICAs on specific projects and issues.
ICA also represents a global movement united by historical connections and a shared global culture, and by its active concern with 'the human factor in world development'. This concern has been articulated by way of explanation of our usage of the word 'culture':
"For us, 'culture' is a practical reality - the images, patterns and shared understandings which allow us to do something together. At the heart of ICA's work is the conviction that long-term, sustainable development happens only when people grasp the significance of their own lives in the larger scheme of things, when they actively participate in the changes taking place around them instead of merely being targets of that change.
One principle prevails - the desire to release the creativity of the people involved and allow them to help to shape their own destiny" (ICAI 1996).