Dr. Gerald H. Anderson’s 240-page history of IAMS, Witness to World Christianity: The International Association for Mission Studies, 1972-2012—which includes 44 photographs and an index—is an outstanding overview of the history of IAMS, and a virtual “Who’s Who” in Mission Studies for the past half century.
Purchase the book Witness to World Christianity
The International Association for Mission Studies
The International Association for Mission Studies is an international, interconfessional and interdisciplinary professional society for the scholarly study of Christian witness and its impact in the world and the related field of intercultural theology.
After some preliminary meetings, IAMS was inaugurated in Driebergen, The Netherlands, in 1972. Since then, every four years an international conference has been held on the different continents. There are now more than 400 scholars who are members of IAMS as well as over 50 institutions that are corporate members.
Every four years, an Executive Committee is chosen by the members and is responsible for the development of the association and charged to organise the next quadrennial conference. On this Committee, different regions of the world are represented. The Secretariat of the association is usually taken charge by one of the associated institutions. Currently the Secretariat is located at CMS in Oxford, United Kingdom.
The objectives of the association are:
- to promote the scholarly study of systematic, biblical, historical and practical questions relating to mission and intercultural theology
- to disseminate information concerning mission studies to all those engaged in that and related study fields
- to promote fellowship, cooperation and mutual assistance in mission studies
- to organise international conferences of missiologists and intercultural theologians
- to encourage the creation of centres of research
- to stimulate publications in missiology and intercultural theology
The quadrennial conferences are designed for intensive study and discussion of a particular missiological theme. They attract a large group of scholars that engage in plenary debates, focus groups, Bible study, exposure visits in the local context, etc. Thanks to the intervention of some missionary and other donor agencies, the representation at these conferences is truly international and intercultural. The language used at these conferences is English.