General Information about IPO

What is the IPO?

IPO stands for International Philosophy Olympiad. IPO is an annual UNESCO-sponsored philosophy competition for high school students. Participants come from around fifty countries from all over the world. More information about IPO can be found in Philosophy Olympiad website.

Who is responsible for organising this year's IPO?

The IPO2024 is organized by Feto ry., an association of teachers of philosophy and worldview studies in Finland.

Where can I find the rules of the Olympiad?

You can find the rules of the competition in Philosophy Olympiad website.

Is there a way to follow this year’s IPO online?

Yes and no. Most of the activities are solely for the participants, but all the guest lecturers’ talks are available on Unitube and later on YouTube.

Where can participants find information on travelling to Helsinki and to their accommodations?

Helsinki is easiest to reach by plane. There are also ferry connections from Tallinn (Estonia), Stockholm (Sweden), and Travemünde (Germany). Once your delegation has registered, you will receive a letter with more detailed information regarding travelling to Helsinki and how to reach your accommodation once here.

Where will the delegations stay during their visit?

All delegations (students and teachers) will stay in Hotel Arthur, a lovely location in the heart of Helsinki city centre. The hotel is within walking distance from all IPO-related locations and other services (stores, restaurants, etc.). More information about the hotel can be found at Hotel Arthur.

Where are the lectures, essay writing and evaluation, and other IPO-related official activies taking place?

The official venues of the IPO are in three different locations: Hotel Arthur (where all students and teachers are staying), the University of Helsinki building Porthania and the University of Helsinki Main Building. All locations are within walking distance (approx. 500 meters) from one another. You can find a map of the locations under the IPO2024 official program.

What is the best way to move around Helsinki?

Hotel Arthur and other official IPO locations are situated in the city centre, so getting around is easiest on foot. Helsinki also has a very functional and extensive public transportation system. You can find more information regarding public transportation from HSL website.

International Philosophy Olympiad:


The INTERNATIONAL PHILOSOPHY OLYMPIAD (IPO) is based on the perpetual cooperation of teachers in philosophy, promoting education of philosophy, creative thinking, ethical reflections, and fostering the values and principles stipulated in the Regulations of the IPO.

The IPO as a community of teachers is committed to ensure an ethically safe place for all participants during their stay at the competition and the related events. To fulfil this goal, the IPO Code of Ethics serves as guidelines with general and specific rules: all participants should be familiar with the Code of Ethics and a Letter of Compliance must be signed which confers obligations towards the IPO. In this sense, any participant, i.e., teacher, student, or organiser, shall be excluded from the IPO competition and banned from future events as soon as any violation of the Code of Ethics has been proven. In severe cases, the participation might be disqualified, such as the withdrawal of awards is possible retroactively. In cases of legal relevance, based on the proposal of the Ethical Committee and the International Committee, or upon its own decision, the National Organization Committee may also propose criminal investigation at the authorities considered as most appropriate.

General statement

The Code of Ethics is based on the following principles:

  • The IPO must be organised and attended with utmost respect to its general goals and with a true commitment to its successful realisation.
  • All participants, i.e., organisers, teachers, and students, ought to be aware of the moral relevance of their conduct, regardless of their national, cultural, or religious identities.
  • All participants should understand and pursue principles of mutual respect. However, no form of moral misconduct, or behaviours generating conflicts, violence or misconduct can be justified with reference to religious beliefs, cultural traditions, or ideologies. Any form of ideology or religious belief ought to be tolerated solely as opinions–open to free contest and criticism.
  • Participation at the IPO requires a firm ethical commitment during the organisation and the competition events. Therefore, a Letter of Compliance including the Ethical Code: General rules of conduct (Section 1), and the Ethical guideline for the actual IPO event (Section 2) is required to be signed by all participants (National Organization Committee, teachers, and students) upon registration to the IPO event.

The National Organizing Committee, in cooperation with the Ethics Committee, must ensure that all participants receive the Letter of Compliance, including the Code of Ethics edited for the actual IPO, 7 days before the first day of the IPO event, and the Code of Ethics is published on the official web site 30 day prior to the IPO event.


The rules are based on principles valid for organisers, as well as for all educators and students participating at the IPO event.

All participants:

1.1 Shall respect the IPO Code of Ethics and comply with the spirit and principles of IPO. 

1.2 Shall avoid any conduct that may cause physical, moral, psychological, or other harm to any other person and shall by all reasonable means prevent others from doing so.

1.3 Shall contribute to an ethically safe space for the IPO, as a competition and an event, marked by mutual respect, sense of safety and well-being, particularly that of students.

1.4 Shall respect the values, beliefs and conduct of others, pertaining to religions or committed to ideologies without being obliged to comply with the rules required by any religious or ideological prescriptions. However, no moral, physical, psychological, or other form of harm caused to others, or suffered, can be justified on the grounds of religious or ideological beliefs. 
1.5 Shall not intentionally expose other participants, nor any other person they contact during their stay at the IPO event to embarrassment or disparagement on the ground of their race, colour, creed, sex, national origin, marital status, political or religious beliefs, family, social or cultural background, or sexual orientation.

1.6 Shall be committed to respect the spirit of democracy, solidarity, freedom, dignity, and human rights.

In fulfilment of the goals to the students, the organiser or educator: 

1.7 Shall show commitment towards the successful organisation of the International Philosophy Olympiad.

1.8 Shall not unreasonably deny the student’s access to varying points of view.

1.9 Shall not intentionally expose the student to embarrassment or disparagement.

1.10 Shall make reasonable effort to protect the student from conditions harmful to learning or to health and safety.

1.11 Shall not on the basis of race, colour, creed, sex, national origin, marital status, political or religious beliefs, family, social or cultural background, or sexual orientation, unfairly—

- exclude any student from participation in any program

- deny benefits to any student

- grant any advantage to any student.

1.12 Shall not use professional relationships with students for private advantage.

1.13 Shall not disclose information about students obtained in the course of professional service unless disclosure serves a compelling professional purpose or is required by law.

1.14 Shall not unreasonably restrain the student from independent action in their pursuits.

1.15 Shall organise and attend the IPO competition with no financial or other personal benefit lacking a transparent background.

In fulfilment of the obligation related to the IPO, the educator:

1.16 Shall help each student realise his or her potential as a worthy and effective member of the IPO events. The educator therefore works to stimulate the spirit of inquiry, the acquisition of knowledge and understanding, and the thoughtful formulation of worthy goals.

1.17 Shall not deliberately make a false statement or fail to disclose a material fact related to his / her professional competency and qualifications.

1.18 Shall not misrepresent his/her professional qualifications.

1.19 Shall not assist any entry into the profession of a person known to be unqualified in respect to character, education, or other relevant attribute.

1.20 Shall not disclose information about colleagues obtained in the course of professional service unless disclosure serves a compelling professional purpose or is required by law.

1.21 Shall not knowingly make false or malicious statements about a colleague.

1.22 Shall not accept any gratuity, gift, or favour that might impair or appear to influence professional decisions or action.

In fulfilment of the goals of the IPO, the student:

1.23 Shall not use any means that may provide unfair advantage during the competitions.


Generally, the rules are based on principles valid for organisers, as well as for all educators and students participating at the IPO event. However, some rules of conduct during IPO events, organised annually in different countries may vary according to the locally relevant legislation but also based on socio-cultural habits, or local traditions. Therefore, the Code of Ethics Section 2 contains annually changing guidelines based on the difference between compulsory and recommended rules.

2.1 Laws are compulsory for all visitors in any given state. The relevant points of the host country legislation are included in the variable part of the IPO Code of Ethics Section 2.1 and as such, also in the Letter of Compliance. However, unawareness of legislation may not be considered as a valid excuse.

2.2 Recommendations: On the behalf of the organisers and the IPO Ethics Committee, we recommend that all IPO participants follow local customs as much as possible. 

The ETHICS COMMITTEE must comply with the principles stipulated in the IPO Regulations: 

The Ethics Committee can be approached by any participant in the IPO, either student or teacher, that feels treated unjustly in any way. In case of a complaint, the main task of the Ethics Committee is to mediate between all parties concerned. If the matter cannot be resolved, the final decision always lies with the International Committee. In such an event, the Ethics Committee informs the International Committee in so far as a regard for the privacy of the persons involved will allow.

The Organizing Committee of the host country will send the names and email-addresses of the Ethics Committee members to all invited participants, and will put this information on their official website, including a short biography of each Ethics Committee member.

The IPO Ethics Committee is responsible for overseeing the fulfilment of the rules and principles previewed in the Code of Ethics during the IPO events and obliged to take appropriate measures in any case action is required. The Ethics Committee may initiate investigations and has the right to submit proposals for further measures, but the final decision must be made by the International Committee (qualified vote needed in each case). 

Accepted by the IPO International Committee at the XXXI. IPO in Olympia, on May 12, 2023.

Members of the IPO Ethics Committee

Kattya Arroyo-Guerra (Costa Rica)

[email protected]

Born in Mexico and raised in Costa Rica. Graduated in Philosophy and in Teaching Philosophy from the University of Costa Rica (UCR). Master's in Teaching Philosophy for Children, Montclair State University (USA). She has taught Philosophy at primary and secondary level (British School of Costa Rica), with extensive experience in the International Baccalaureate, and has taught several courses in Education, Ethics and Epistemology at university level. At UCR, she has collaborated with the School of Philosophy, the Education Research Institute and the School of Teacher Training as a professor, researcher, and director of the Department of Secondary Education (2020-2023). Since 2014 coordinates the Costa Rican Philosophy Olympiad and delegation for the International Philosophy Olympiad.

Attila Pató (Hungary)

[email protected]

Born in Romania (1967), moved to Hungary in 1984, permanent residence in the Czech Republic since 2007. Graduated from Szeged University (MA in History and Philosophy), where he also held different positions from 1995 to 2007. Obtained a PhD. degree in philosophy at Debrecen University. Currently a teacher at the Language Centre, University of Pardubice. Published essays and translations in different languages in a variety of topics in philosophy, literature, Central Europe. Member of editorial boards, such as Journal of Didactics of Philosophy. Head of the IPO Hungary team since 2005.