On 11 September 2023, the National Information Processing Institute (OPI), acting on behalf of the Polish Ministry of Education and Science (MEiN), launched the innowacje.opi.org.pl portal. The website serves as a hub for diverse information on innovative projects, benefiting both Polish businesses and the scientific community. It is more than a large innovation database: users are given recommendations on where to seek specific experts, reports, scientific publications, and free-of-charge online courses.
Thousands of innovative projects in one place
‘We believe that the state should support all entities in their innovation endeavours and in eliminating barriers. With this in mind, MEiN championed the initiative to create the innowacje.opi.org.pl portal,’ says Wojciech Murdzek, Secretary of State, Government Representative at MEiN in charge of the reform of research institutes’ operations.
‘Despite having access to billions of pieces of data, the process of selecting the most essential information that concerns innovation in particular areas is no easy task. The new OPI portal categorises innovative initiatives in a simple and logical manner, enabling users to quickly access the reliable data they seek. I recommend the innowacje.opi.org.pl portal to both entrepreneurs and scientists, and encourage them to visit it regularly, as the portal has been designed primarily with their needs in mind,’ adds Mr Murdzek.
Users of innowacje.opi.org.pl are directed to multiple other OPI systems, such as RAD-on, the Polish Scholarly Bibliography (PBN), the Funding Stream Support System (OSF), and the NAVOICA MOOC platform, as well as the Medical Research Agency system. The portal offers information on innovative publications and scientific projects, experts in specific fields, patents, research apparatus, and research funding—all of this and more is presented in the form of free reports and analyses. Users can also benefit from a wide range of free online courses dedicated to innovation development, which are available on NAVOICA.
‘We have noticed that there is no centralised platform on the Polish internet that consolidates the extensive, but dispersed sources of information on Polish innovations for business and science. OPI is the main developer and operator of the IT systems that collect data on Polish science and higher education. The volume of information in these systems is considerable and might sometimes confuse users. By visiting innowacje.opi.org.pl, users gain access to an extensive database of innovative initiatives that are organised in a straightforward and logical manner, which simplifies the search for particular innovations considerably,’ says Dr Jarosław Protasiewicz, Head of the National Information Processing Institute.
Clearing the path for innovation development
The European Innovation Scoreboard 2022 places Poland in the category of ‘emerging innovators’, with a score of 60.5% of the European Union average. In the most recent edition of the Global Innovation Index, Poland ranked 38th of 132 economies worldwide. The growth rate is far from satisfactory, however. Intensive efforts are essential to drive innovation and eliminate existing barriers. Experts at OPI have prepared the National Innovation System: opportunities and challenges report, which can be downloaded from the Innowacje.opi.org.pl portal free of charge. The authors conducted a series of consultations with stakeholders who assisted them in recognising the major obstacles to the development of innovation in Poland. Their primary concerns included the dispersion of knowledge and information, deficiencies in domain-specific knowledge, education and experience, and insufficient access to data and IT tools. When the obstacles were identified, OPI began the development of a portal that works towards eliminating these barriers and addresses users’ needs.
Innovation’s role in synergising business and science
‘Our primary consideration in developing the portal is to address the needs of entrepreneurs and scientists. Entrepreneurs can find information quickly on projects and patents. The portal might act as a starting point for new business solutions. We have prepared a step-by-step scenario in which a fictional entrepreneur explains how to seek industry-relevant information on innovative solutions. This success story is designed to inspire real entrepreneurs to use the portal to their advantage,’ says Małgorzata Paszkowska, project portfolio manager at OPI.
The experts at OPI have also catered to the needs of researchers, enabling them to easily search for and access information on the achievements of other scientists. This can play a crucial role in aiding researchers to build connections for future collaborative endeavours. The portal is also a beneficial tool for anyone interested in innovation initiatives. innowacje.opi.org.pl is free of charge.