The Indian Institute of World Culture was founded on 11 August, 1945 in the pleasant suburb of Basavanagudi in the city of Bangalore.Â It owes its existence to the foresight, vision and sacrifice of its founder President, Shri. B.P. Wadia and his worthy spouse Smt. Sophia Wadia.Â The prime object of the institute has all along been to foster the growth of truly cosmopolitan spirit among citizens, resting on universal brotherhood and a faith in the moral law, which do not belong exclusively to any one age, climate, nation or creed.Â In the words of its founder President, â€œthe institute seeks to make available to those nuggets of knowledge which make a man healthier in body, wealthier in mind, nobler in heart, more self-sacrificing in spiritâ€.Â It was conceived not as an academy for scholars, but as a cultural centre for ordinary men and women, affording them opportunities to develop those graces of living which are the hall-mark of humanism.
For achieving these lofty ideals, public lectures are being organized regularly on relevant topics.Â These are judiciously blended with programmes of music and dance to enrich the cultural life.Â On an average, one hundred and fifty programmes are organized yearly, with not less than two programmes each week.Â Among the many distinguished scholars who have honoured the institute by their visits, special mention could be made of the names ofÂ Mr. C.P. Ramaswamy Ayiar, Prof. Julian Huxley, Prof. Arnold Toybee, Shri. C. Rajagopalachari, Lord Boyd Orr, H.H. the Panchen Lama, Dr. J.V. Narlikar, Dr. K.G. Saiyidain, Dr. Karan Singh, H.H. Jayachamarajendra Wadiayar, and Dr. Martin Luther King. Jr and many other world renowned persons.
Some of the lectures delivered are brought out in print as â€œTransactions of the instituteâ€ for wider dissemination.Â More than hundred such transactions have been issued so far.Â Each monthâ€™s programme is given advance publicity in the monthly bulletin of the institute, along with some useful reading material.Â Sustained efforts are made to conduct all programmes with clock-like precision and punctuality.
The institute maintains a General Library of over 40,000volumes, which is satisfying one of the needs of the community.Â A separate childrenâ€™s library has also been established to cater to the special needs of the younger generation.Â Both these have become very popular and useful over the years.Â Its magazine has over 400 periodicals.
Art and Bhajan classes are also being arranged, besides special short-term summer programmes for the benefit of those interested.
A new dimension to the growth of the institute was given in 1985 through the establishment of the Centre for History and Philosophy of Science (CHPS).Â The centre has undertaken a number of research programmes touching on the history and philosophy of science, sponsored by the state government of Karnataka, the Indian Academy of Science and the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research.Â The volumes prepared by the Centre are rated highly among scholars for the light they shed and the in-depth study they reflect on the themes chosen for study.
The institute is a voluntary agency, zealous of its non-sectarian, non-political and autonomous character.Â It is registered under the Karnataka Societies Registration Act.Â Its management is vested in an executive committee.
The doors of the institute are open to all who are in sympathy with the concept of universal brotherhood and who endeavour to cultivate an attitude of brotherliness in their daily life.