NIVA was founded in 1982 in Helsinki, Finland in conjunction with the Finnish Institute for Occupational Health (FIOH). Already at the time there was a strong belief in the importance of discussing common Nordic occupational health and safety matters and in the power of gathering Nordic experts within the field.

NIVA has been an active player in the field of occupational health and safety education for 37 years. During this time, over 13 000 experts and specialists from over 40 countries have attended and networked in NIVA. Some 25 % of the attendees come from countries outside of the Nordics.

Today, NIVA is the only institute in Europe that focuses solely on an international and advanced level of occupational education – course participants are accepted regardless of where in the world they come from.