The IUHPS is one of 26 scientific unions belonging to the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU). As the world's leading non-governmental organization in the field of science, ICSU promotes congresses, publications, and other initiatives designed to facilitate international exchanges and understanding. The IUHPS joined the ICSU family in 1947, and the history of science congresses that have taken place since that date have been held under the ICSU umbrella.
The IUHPS is itself composed of two divisions: the DHS and the DLMPS (Division of Logic, Methodology, and Philosophy of Science). Each division organizes its own international congress once every four years. The DHS's last congress took place in Mexico City in 2001; the DLMPS's in Cracow in 1999.
Financial support for the DHS comes from a direct subsidy from ICSU and from the subscriptions of the 49 national committees that adhere to the division. Its scholarly work is conducted mainly through its 13 scientific commissions, 5 inter-union commissions, and 3 independent scientific sections.
With such a structure, the quality of the DHS's work is largely determined by the vigor of its commissions and sections, and inevitably the profile of activity over the years has been variable. But aided by the exceedingly modest support that DHS has been able to give, several commissions and sections have achieved striking results, in the form of meetings, newsletters, and scholarly publications.