The Interregional Open Social Institute was opened in 2003 in the city of Yoshkar Ola. This decision was dictated by the urgent need for highly qualified personnel of a new breed in the economy of the Republic of Mari El. Lecturers of state universities of Mari El, Tatarstan, Chuvashia, Mordovia and other regions were engaged to teach at the IOSI. Today 110 regular lecturers work at the Institute, among them there are Candidates and Doctors of Sciences, highly-skilled professional practitioners renowned in Mari El and Russia.
In 2007 the IOSI got the certificate attesting that the quality management system in relation to development and providing educational services in the field of higher and additional professional education conforms to the requirements of the standards GOST R ISO 9001-2001 (ISO 9001:2000).
In 2008 the IOSI passed the state accreditation process, received the official status of an Institute and the right to conduct activities on equal terms with state higher educational institutions not only in Mari El, but also beyond its limits. Graduates of the Interregional Open Social Institute on an equal basis with graduates of state educational institutions receive state-recognized degrees (Diplomas).