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POB V: Responding to Global Challenges

This POB provides a platform for cooperation among researchers from different disciplines of the social sciences – from economists to sociologists. It will be used to carry out innovative research projects on a European and global scale, on the most important challenges of today’s world. Growing economic and social inequalities, the increasing selectivity, scale, and diversity of mobility, the digital transformation, and ubiquitous systemic risks are all global phenomena, yet they are anchored in processes and structures which are local and regional. It is at these local and regional levels – focusing on Poland and Central and Eastern Europe, while upholding the broader European and global contexts – that researchers from the University of Warsaw will seek answers to questions about the precise nature of these phenomena, concerning their settings, dynamics and consequences.

Our approach is characterised by its interdisciplinarity and openness to new theoretical and empirical solutions. We draw on the potential of outstanding researchers who are active in the field of European and world sciences, as well as on the enthusiasm of its young workers. We also benefit from the achievements and connections which have been developed by the thriving interdisciplinary units and teams which are operating at the University: EUROREG, the Robert Zajoniec Institute for Social Studies, the Laboratory of Media Studies, DELab UW and the Centre of Migration Research.

The basic objective of the activities carried out under POB V is to integrate social researchers at the University of Warsaw and facilitate the development of their potential in national and world sciences. We focus on creating close connections between scientific activities with the teaching process, by creating new fields of study and strengthening existing areas of inquiry, such as urban studies, science studies (scientometrics), or digital sociology.

Examples of fields and disciplines of science related to POB

  • Humanities
    • history
  • Medical and health sciences
    • health sciences
  • Social sciences
    • economics and finance
    • social and economic geography and spatial management
    • management and quality studies
    • sociology
    • political science and public administration
    • security studies
    • communication and media studies
    • law
    • education
    • psychology
  • Natural sciences
    • Earth and related environmental sciences

The above list does not exclude other fields and disciplines of science that could fit into Priority Research Area V.

Focus areas

The focus areas of POB V include the social sciences, in particular:

  • different dimensions of inequality,
  • mobility and migration,
  • demographic change,
  • social change,
  • political change,
  • attitudes, their determinants and consequences,
  • digital revolution and its consequences,
  • the mediatisation of worlds,
  • risks of a systemic nature.


The creation of a Centre of Excellence in Social Sciences

The Centre of Excellence in Social Sciences will become a new space for cooperation among researchers who are working at the intersections of disciplines in the social sciences. It is intended to strengthen the research potential at the University of Warsaw, so that scientific excellence can be put into practice. At the same time, at a conceptual level, the proposal draws on the experience of existing interdisciplinary departments at the University of Warsaw, which has shown that one potential way to increase UW’s competitiveness in European and world science is to go beyond the existing “silos”; it is necessary to make synergistic use of the potential of the social sciences – at both scientific and organisational level – in the most promising research areas. The thematic scope of the activities which have been planned is consistent with the subject matter of all the activities being implemented under POB V. The Centre is intended to be a ‘hub’ to serve as a base for all other activities which are being implemented as part of IDUB, in the field of social sciences. It will provide support for individual researchers and for emerging and existing research teams. It will also ensure that this support is comprehensive (from initiating research and applying for financing, to international cooperation and dissemination of the results of the implemented activities). — detailed description

Coordinator: dr hab. Paweł Kaczmarczyk

Building an Impactful Digital Alliance

The IDA will function as a platform for cooperation which integrates researchers from the University of Warsaw who are involved in researching the area of digital transition. This environment has been designed for exchanging and sharing the latest knowledge, but also for transferring specific competences in processing, analysing, and using data, and experimenting with new research methods. Research on digital transformation will be conducted in an environment that will set an example for working practices in the field of digital transformation of universities, as well as research methods. The IDA will play an important role in building data and design competencies (data literacy) among the University’s academic staff. — detailed description

Coordinator: dr hab. Renata Włoch

Central European Social Survey

The Central European Social Survey will be a unique source of social data for psychologists, sociologists, political scientists, and economists. It will consist of a panel survey on diverse issues, such as migration, inequality, transformation, collective memory, intergroup relations, and radicalisation. The survey design will be carried out in cooperation with leading universities in the region, and the process will also include a number of activities to increase the analytical competence of students and doctoral candidates (methodological specialisation, training, etc.). — detailed description

Coordinator: dr hab. Michał Bilewicz, prof. ucz.

Internal Research Panel

The Internal Research Panel will be another source of unique data. It will enable researchers in the field of human behaviour to conduct large-scale, experimental, or qualitative research questionnaires. It will also allow all of the students at the University of Warsaw to gain experience with participating in scientific research. — detailed description

Coordinator: dr hab. Konrad Jankowski

Mobility and inequalities through the prism of new digital data sources

The aim of this activity is to create a research programme at UW, using new types of data for innovative research on the determinants, dimensions, and effects of territorial mobility, social mobility, and economic inequality. It will provide access to data sets on mobility and inequality (digital data, harmonised/integrated census data, administrative sources, survey collections, and “big data”). The creation of new research teams and groups will be encouraged, especially those characterised by their high potential for international cooperation. — detailed description

Coordinator: dr hab. Michał Brzeziński

The gamification of worlds at the service of modern society in the 21st century – a platform for exchange

The essence of this activity is in creating a virtual platform/network of researchers and research centres, concerned with research in the field of eSports, computer games and AR/VR experiences. Its international recognition will be ensured through joint publications in recognised periodicals and monographs, as well as organisation of (and participation in) prestigious scientific conferences. The aim of this activity is to make the University of Warsaw a kind of virtual hub to engage researchers from various scientific disciplines and fields (from Poland and abroad) who study VR/AR games and experiences. The platform will primarily be a virtual space for mutual learning, sharing databases, and presenting the results of biometric experiments along with their analyses. These, in turn, will provide a basis for joint publications and new grant applications. — detailed description

Coordinator: dr hab. Tomasz Gackowski

Launch of a systemic risk study project

The most important feature of the Centre for Systemic Risk Research is the combination of approaches it incorporates – from the social sciences, exact sciences, and natural sciences. The aim of this cooperation is to achieve a synergy effect and reach a new standard for scientific research. One of the key research tools will be mathematical and computer modelling. We believe that by combining a wealth of empirical data and precise tools from the sciences, researchers will gain deeper insights into the social sciences and humanities. The Centre will be responsible for disseminating the results of scientific research and will also coordinate cooperation with specialists from abroad. — detailed description

Coordinator: dr Sebastian Szymański

Knowledge laboratory: Scientometrics for scientific excellence

The advanced scientific research conducted within the framework of the Knowledge Laboratory will become a resource that can be used by the entire academic community at the University of Warsaw. The aim of this activity is to create a unique centre of research on processes of development in science and technology, as well as the relation of these spheres to society and public policies. — detailed description

Coordinator: dr Adam Płoszaj

Members of the Coordinating Committee