OA in Poland

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The National Research Environment

Higher education institutions play a major role in the national research potential.

Higher education institutions in Poland

The Polish Academy of Sciences (PAS) established in 1952, is an independent research institution.  PAS as a research centre currently comprises of 79 research establishments (institutes and research centres, research stations, botanical gardens and other research units) and auxiliary scientific units (archives, libraries, museums, and foreign PAN stations).

Branch research-development units are state institutions operating as separate entities in terms of their legal basis, organisational arrangements and funding mechanisms supervised by various sector ministries that conduct R&D work in line with the needs of the national economy and social life. Among 189 units there are research institutes, central laboratories and research and development centres.

Development units are business entities active in R&D. Besides their primary activity, they also lead experimental development aimed at the application of existing knowledge attained through basic or applied research or through practical experience.  

(Information of the EURAXESS Poland)

Major research funders

The Minister of Science and Higher Education is responsible for the development and implementation of research policy, research funding (except for military R&D projects) and the promotion of international co-operation in the area of research. In 2005, the Council for Science was established as a new consultative and advisory body for the Minister. Its responsibilities include: giving opinions on draft documents and legislation and proposed economic as well as financial arrangements concerning research and technology development. The Council is also in charge of the assessment of research institutions and the applications for research projects that they submit.

The National Centre for Research and Development (NCBiR) was established in July 2007 with the goal of managing and implementing strategic scientific research and development programmes that directly translate into development of innovative projects and products. The tasks of NCBiR include support for commercialization and other forms of transferring scientific research results into economic value. This ensures ongoing support for scientific development, particularly the participation of young scientists in research programmes and the implementation of international scientists mobility programmes.

(Information of the EURAXESS Poland)

EC research funding

Since Poland’s accession to the European Union on 1 May 2004, the country’s research policy has taken into account the participation in the creation and implementation of scientific activity on a pan-European level.  

A national Development Plan has been created in order to capitalize on Polish membership in the European Union and take advantage of the opportunities it brings. The Plan covers the period of 2007-2013 and is being developed as a combined socio-economic strategy that integrates all national undertakings and activities financed on the national and community level (financed both from public and private sources, including structural funds).

In October 2008 the National Programme for Scientific Research and Development Activities was published by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education. Its principal objective is to strengthen the role of the research community in shaping modern and long-term conditions to ensure social and economy development.

A major instrument for the implementation of changes is the Act on Principles of Financing Science of 2004. It strengthens the role of the Minister of Science in the development of research policy, establishes new consultative and advisory bodies and introduces new instruments for funding research and development activities.

Other funding mechanisms include regional innovation strategies supported by the European Structural Funds and implemented in all 16 Polish provinces (voivodships). The strategies ensure that all partners (research institutions, business entities and local government bodies) co-operate with one another in order to enhance innovativeness in a given region. Support is provided to ensure co-operation between research and industry sectors; to establish technology parks and incubators; and  for the development of Advanced Technology Centres.

(Information of the EURAXESS Poland)

Open Access and Repositories

Open Access projects and initiatives

Poland has already developed a good local tradition for Open Access content, with the active involvement of organisations like Creative Commons Poland.

Open Access repositories

AMUR - Adam Mickiewicz University Repository - Included among the repository collections are: journals published at the University, PhD theses, research papers, conference presentations and learning materials. On November 20, 2009 the Rector of Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan issued an open access PhD theses mandate - the first in Poland.

Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences - Earlier this year the Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences registered an open access institutional mandate – “All newly published manuscripts must be immediately deposited in the repository in the final reviewed version (not publisher's proprietary pdf). Deposits will become available immediately or after expiration of embargo, depending on publisher's policy.”

ECNIS Repository (Environmental Cancer Risk, Nutrition and Individual Susceptibility)

Electrical Engineering Department, Wroclaw University of Technology

Digital Library of the Formal Linguistics Department at the University of Warsaw

Polish digital library federation - the PIONIER Network Digital Libraries Federationis - is maintained by the Poznań Supercomputing and Networking Center affiliated by the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry of Polish Academy of Sciences.

Open Access publishing

There are 75 open access journals listed in DOAJ.

Virtual Libray of Science - Polish Mathematical Collection

Open Access organisations and groups

ICM, Interdisciplinary Centre for Computational and Mathematical Modelling at the University of Warsaw has been active in the field of Open Access to scientific knowledge since the year 2000, when it initiated the Virtual Library of Science project. As part of this project, two Open Access collections have been created: the Mathematical Collection (with 10 archived journals and four book series), and the Natural Sciences Collection (with 8 archived journals). ICM is also developing YADDA, a software platform for large scale publication of digital content, which is an important tool for increasing Open Access capabilities. Finally, ICM has also been working with partners digitizing, cataloguing and providing access to Polish scientific content.

Since 2007 ICM is one of the institutional partners of Creative Commons Poland, responsible for management and promotion of free copyright licenses, especially in the scientific milieu. Creative Commons licenses constitute an important legal tool for the Open Access movement.

ICM has been one of the partners of the DRIVER and DRIVER II consortium, and is a partner of COMMUNIA - a European thematic network on the digital public domain. Through the Creative Commons Poland project, ICM works closely with key players in the field of Open Access, Open Educational Resources and Free Culture, both in Poland, and in Europe and globally (through the international Creative Commons network and European consortia). ICM employees have expertise both in promoting these issues (through conferences, public meetings, lectures and speeches) and in providing guidance for partners interested in implementing open models.

This year, ICM UW also joined the Coalition for Open Educational Resources, comprisied of four institutional actors active in this field – with ICM UW responsible for the field of OER in university-level education. As part of the coalition, ICM is co-organizing a conference in the Polish Parliament this spring, aimed at promoting OER and OA among Polish policymakers.

ICM's latest project, called „Open the Book”, intends to increase awareness about Open Access by building a collection of scientific books made available directly by scientists, under Creative Commons licenses. As part of this project, ICM will organize a conference on Open Science and publish a guidebook on related issue, both first of its kind in Poland.

Poznan Foundation of Scientific Libraries nominated Bożena Bednarek-Michalska, Nicolaus Copernicus University Library in Torun, eIFL-OA country coordinator.

Useful links and resources

Open Science

Contact details of the National Open Access Desk

Jakub Szprot, Interdisciplinary Centre for Computational and Mathematical Modelling at the University of Warsaw, openaire[@]icm.edu.pl