The World Chess Olympiad is a tournament where top ranking players from various countries participate in order to determine which country is superior in the game of chess. The Olympiad is held every second year.

The first World Chess Olympiad was held at Paris, France in 1924. Some 54 players from 18 countries played including well known names such as Max Euwe, Edgar Colle, Hans Johner and Marcel Duchamp. None of the top world masters at the time (Jose Raul Capablanca, Emanuel Lasker, Alexander Alekhine or Akiba Rubinstein) played. Alexander Alekhine directed the tournament.

In 1927, England organized the first Chess Olympiad under official FIDE rules and regulations. Every member country of FIDE was invited to send a team of four players, with two reserves. Matches were held in a round robin between all the competing teams.

Initially there was no special class for women. The first female Olympiad was in 1957. Since 1976, the two Olympiads (mens and womens) have occured at the same time and place.

The World Chess Olympiad has been held at the following times and locations, as well as the champion(s) for each year: