IBBY's biennial international congresses bring together IBBY members and other people involved in children's books and reading development from all over the world. The congresses are excellent occasions to make contacts, exchange ideas and open horizons.

Every two years a different National Section hosts the Congress. Several hundred people attend the lectures, panel discussions, seminar sessions and workshops on current congress themes. An IBBY International Congress also serves as a frame not only for the General Assembly and other meetings, but also for the presentation of different exhibitions and celebrations such as the Hans Christian Andersen Awards and the IBBY Honour List.

The most recent IBBY International Congress was held in Auckland, New Zealand on 18-21 August 2016,

Future IBBY International Congresses will be held in:

Istanbul, Turkey on 1-4 September 2018, with the theme East meets West around children's books and fairy tales,

Moscow, Russia on 5-7 September 2020, with the theme Great big world through children's books, ibbycongress2020 on

36th IBBY International Congress: Istanbul, Turkey 1-4 September 2018

35th IBBY International Congress: Auckland, New Zealand 18-21 August 2016