The 2011 Women's Handball World Championship will be carried out from 3 to 18 December 2011 in Brazil. The groups for the European Qualification Tournaments were drawn on 27 July 2010.
A total of 24 teams will compete in Brazil. Besides Russia as defending champions and Brazil as host nation, Asia with 4 teams and Africa as well as Pan America with 3 teams each will match up with 11 European teams (excluding Russia).
From these 11 places, three are reserved for the best three teams at the EHF EURO 2010 (7 - 19 December) in Denmark and Norway. 29 European teams will play in two qualification phases for the remaining 8 places.
The qualification round will be played in four groups as tournaments during the week 30 November to 5 December 2010 among the following 17 national teams:
Group 1 (5 Teams)
Group 2 (4 Teams)
Group 3 (4 Teams)
Group 4 (4 Teams)
The teams in row 5 - this only applies to Cyprus - were drawn to possess the right to organise the tournament. In the groups 2, 3 and 4 and if Cyprus decline, the home right was drawn to the teams in row 3. The right is if declined then passed on to the teams in row 4, row 2 and then row 1.
The four group winners proceed to the Play-Off matches.
From the 16 teams at the EHF EURO 2010 in Denmark and Norway, Russia as current World Championship titleholder and the three best placed teams are directly qualified for Brazil. The remaining 12 EHF EURO 2010 teams qualify directly for the play-off matches, including 12 of the following 15 national teams:
These 12 together with the 4 group winners of the Qualification Round will be drawn to 8 play-off match-ups on 19 December 2010 in Herning, Denmark, at the occasion of the final day of the EHF EURO 2010. The play-off matches will be played on 4/5 June and 11/12 June 2011.