In 1990, fundamental politico-economic transformations started in Poland with a primary purpose to introduce the free-market economy into the country. As a legacy after the previous system, there existed – among other things – two separate ‘worlds’ in the Polish economy: i.e. science and production (in the broad meaning). In the field of science and technology, we inherited: bad communication between science and society,

low level of public understanding of science (PUS), weak co-operation between the science sphere and the production sphere, small scale of science commercialisation, practically non-existent infrastructure of scientific and technological knowledge flows in society.

At present, the market reforms are far advanced. So now, the main direction is to build the knowledge-based economy/society. Here, ‘knowledge’ is obviously understood as a scientific and technological (S&T) one. Achieving this purpose requires a significant intensification of the knowledge flows. There exist two basic sources of this knowledge: (1) a domestic science and technology sector/system, and (2) inflows of S&T knowledge from abroad. Both sources are equally important, however, in my paper I deal mainly with (1).

A broadly developed, well organized and functioning infrastructure of scientific and technological knowledge flows is a basis for the knowledge-based economy or society. However, in the Polish conditions, due to historical occurrences, science-production (S-P) linkages have a crucial role to play in the desired intensification of scientific and technological knowledge flows. Therefore, a special attention must be paid to institutional intermediaries between science and production. I call them ‘uttis’ (units making up technology transfer infrastructure).

As in other numerous countries, there exist three main types of institutional science-production links: (1) science parks, innovation incubators, technology centres, (2) bridging institutions, and (3) spin-off firms. A big progress has been achieved in this field during the Polish transformations. Nowadays, we have twelve science parks, three of them in the course of organization; a quite well developed network of bridging institutions, nevertheless, not all of them working properly; and a certain, but not too big, number of spin-offs.

Of course, not only uttis participate in scientific and technological knowledge flows in the Polish society. Also, the other elements of the infrastructure are engaged in such events organized in the country every year as, for example, science festivals, scientific picnics, a national day of science, scientific and technological exhibitions and fairs, etc.

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Infrastructure of scientific and technological knowledge flows in society
Polish experiences, 1989-2004

Andrzej H Jasinski   Warsaw University, Warsaw, Poland

In 1990, fundamental politico-economic transformations started in Poland with a primary purpose to introduce the free-market economy into the country. As a legacy after the previous system, there existed – among other things – two separate ‘worlds’ in the Polish economy: i.e. science and production (in the broad meaning). In the field of science and technology, we inherited: bad communication between science and society,

low level of public understanding of science (PUS), weak co-operation between the science sphere and the production sphere, small scale of science commercialisation, practically non-existent infrastructure of scientific and technological knowledge flows in society.

At present, the market reforms are far advanced. So now, the main direction is to build the knowledge-based economy/society. Here, ‘knowledge’ is obviously understood as a scientific and technological (S&T) one. Achieving this purpose requires a significant intensification of the knowledge flows. There exist two basic sources of this knowledge: (1) a domestic science and technology sector/system, and (2) inflows of S&T knowledge from abroad. Both sources are equally important, however, in my paper I deal mainly with (1).

A broadly developed, well organized and functioning infrastructure of scientific and technological knowledge flows is a basis for the knowledge-based economy or society. However, in the Polish conditions, due to historical occurrences, science-production (S-P) linkages have a crucial role to play in the desired intensification of scientific and technological knowledge flows. Therefore, a special attention must be paid to institutional intermediaries between science and production. I call them ‘uttis’ (units making up technology transfer infrastructure).

As in other numerous countries, there exist three main types of institutional science-production links: (1) science parks, innovation incubators, technology centres, (2) bridging institutions, and (3) spin-off firms. A big progress has been achieved in this field during the Polish transformations. Nowadays, we have twelve science parks, three of them in the course of organization; a quite well developed network of bridging institutions, nevertheless, not all of them working properly; and a certain, but not too big, number of spin-offs.

Of course, not only uttis participate in scientific and technological knowledge flows in the Polish society. Also, the other elements of the infrastructure are engaged in such events organized in the country every year as, for example, science festivals, scientific picnics, a national day of science, scientific and technological exhibitions and fairs, etc.

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