The Polish Committee for the UNESCO Memory of the World Programme

The Polish Committee for the UNESCO Memory of the World Programme has been in existence since 1996. The Committee members are representatives of the most important libraries, archives and HEIs in the country, all of which are highly committed to the preservation of cultural property. Currently, the Committee has been chaired by Wojciech Woźniak, the General Director of the State Archives.

In implementing the Memory of the World Programme, the Committee undertakes activities serving to preserve Poland’s national heritage and render it accessible. One of the results of the international Programme and its operations is the World Register of documentary items of particular cultural and historical significance. In consultation with the Polish Commission for UNESCO, national heritage institutions and experts and following an analysis consisting of multiple stages, the members of the Committee submit Poland’s nominations to the Register.

With a view to achieving the even more effective protection and popularisation of the country’s heritage, the Polish Committee instigated a National Memory of the World Register which constitutes a list of diverse documents of great value to our history and culture.

From the very outset of the Memory of the World initiative, the members of the Polish Committee have taken an active part in creating and building the Programme. Poland has twice played host to meetings of the International Advisory Committee (IAC); the inaugural meeting launching the Programme’s activities was held in Pułtusk in 1993 and, ten years later, the sixth IAC session took place in Gdańsk. In addition, the UNESCO Memory of the World Programme’s Fourth International Conference met in Warsaw in 2011 and the occasion saw the adoption of the Warsaw Declaration, which set out the future directions for the Programme’s activities.