KAVI’s statutory responsibilities include the preservation of films and television and radio programmes and research related to these media, monitoring the provision of audiovisual programmes and promoting media education.
On 1 January 2014, the National Audiovisual Archive KAVA (2008–2013, preceded by the Finnish Film Archive 1957–2007) and the Centre for Media Education and Audiovisual Programmes MEKU (2012–2013, preceded by the Finnish Board of Film Classification 1946–2011) were merged into the National Audiovisual Institute. With KAVA (until 2007 the Finnish Film Archive), the Institute acquired the national film, television and radio archive as well as KAVA’s mandate to preserve and promote Finnish audiovisual culture. The Finnish Film Archive was established as a private organization in 1957, and by the following year had already joined the International Federation of Film Archives (FIAF). In 1979, the Finnish Film Archive became a state institution. In 1984, the Film Deposit Act entered into force, and in 2009, comprehensive archiving of radio and television programmes began.
MEKU’s responsibilities are the promotion of media education and monitoring the provision of audiovisual programmes. As the Media Education and Audiovisual Programmes Unit at KAVI, MEKU serves as an expert in the development of children’s media environment, promotes research related to the field, tracks international developments and provides information on matters related to children and the media.