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Australian Informatics Olympiad Committee (AIOC)

History

In 1989 an International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI) was first held in Pravetz, Bulgaria. Since then it has grown to be the second largest of the International Science Olympiads (behind Mathematics, the others being in Physics, Chemistry and Biology). Unlike the other four, in each of which Australia has a strong history, Australia only entered its first team through the Australian Mathematics Trust in the IOI in 1999 (in Turkey).

(We do note however that a team did participate in the 1992 in Bonn, Germany after a national selection process involving the Toowoomba based school team Computer Competition. Three students represented Australia at this IOI gaining the excellent results of a Silver and two Bronze medals. More details can be found on the honour roll of former olympians. The mechanism which led to the participation in 1992 lapsed.)

A group of interested professionals met at Monash University in February 1998 to form an Interim Committee, under the Chairmanship of Peter Taylor, Executive Director of the Australian Mathematics Trust. This Committee agreed to run an Australian Informatics Competition which was held for the first time in September 1998.

The best students in this competition were identified and invited to a selection school held at the Australian National University, Canberra, from 27 June to 3 July, 1998. As a result of this a team was selected to represent Australia at the 1999 IOI held in Turkey.

On 6 May 1999 the Board of the Australian Mathematics Trust established the Australian Informatics Olympiad Committee (AIOC) as the Trust's third sub-Trust. In 2005 a restructuring of the Trust involved each of the three Sub-Trusts, including AIOC, becoming a Department of the Trust.

An Australian student first won a Gold Medal at the 2006 IOI. In 2007 for the first time all members of the Australian team won a medal at IOI and the medals included a Gold and a Silver. For further information on Australia's performance at IOI see here.