The Foresight method has been successfully applied by the majority of European Union countries. A key element of this method is to predict the possible directions of scientific development by creating a platform of discussion and cooperation between scientific environment, industry and public opinion in a range of scientific and technological priorities as well as main social issues. Therefore the Foresight Project was activated in Poland as well, by Ministry of Science and Higher Education.
The scope of realisation of the National Foresight Programme 'Poland 2020' covers three research areas and twenty special topics making up each area.
Sustainable Development of Poland:
- Quality of life
- Sources and use of power resources
- Key ecological problems
- Environmental protection technologies
- Natural resources
- New materials and technologies
- Integration of ecological policy with sectoral policies
- Product policy
- Sustainable development of regions and areas.
Information and Telecommunications Technologies:
- Access to information
- ICT and the society
- ICT and education
- New media.
- Economic security (external and internal)
- Intellectual security
- Social security
- Technical and technological security
- Development of civic society.
The aim of the National Foresight Programme 'Poland 2020' is to:
- Lay out the development vision of Poland until year 2020.
- Set out – through a consensus with the main beneficiaries – the priority paths of scientific research and development which will, in the long run, have an impact on the acceleration of the social and economic growth.
- Put the research results into practice and create preferences for them when it comes to allotting funds from the budget.
- Present the significance of scientific research to economic growth and how it can be absorbed by the economy.
- Adjust the Polish scientific policy to the requirements of the European Union.
- Shape the scientific and innovative policy towards Knowledge-Based Economy.
Implementation of the National Foresight Programme in Poland should bring about the following effects:
- Focusing of the development of research and technologies on fields guaranteeing fast economic growth in the medium and long run.
- Rationalisation of expenditures from publicly available funds.
- Creation of a public debate language and culture of thinking about the future, leading to coordination of joint efforts towards economic growth and improvement of the quality of life in Poland.
The most important substantive body of the Project is the Main Panel, chaired by professor Michal Kleiber, President of the Polish Academy of Sciences.
The unit responsible for accomplishing the project is the Consortium coordinated by Institute of Fundamental Technological Research Polish Academy of Sciences (IPPT PAN). Other members of the Consortium are: Institute of Economics Polish Academy of Sciences (INE PAN) and Pentor Research International (PENTOR).
The project will be coordinated in cooperation with interdisciplinary group for National Programme Foresight (the Steering Committee) set up by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education. This Committee will be responsible for the correct fulfilment of tasks.