The research roots of our Department are located in two traditions. The first consists of studies conducted by prof. Piotr Hubner; the second is the so-called Toruń school of research on inequalities in schooling and higher education, including the work of prof. Ryszard Borowicz. The present shape of the Department is a manifestation of the diverse and interdisciplinary nature of research on science and higher education, reflecting both the aforementioned traditions as well as the new interests of our staff. These include, among others, studies of changes in Polish higher education and reforms of university system in Europe (Dominik Antonowicz); inequalities in the field of higher education and issues of the value of education (Krzysztof Wasilewski); processes of internal differentiation of primary and secondary education, and the functioning of rural schools within their local environments (Jarosław Domalewski); research on women in Polish science (Anna Pokorska); analyses of state policies regarding science and higher education, including regulations of the research funding system (Marta Jaworska).
Thanks to the support of NAWA, under the auspices of the Ulam program, our team was joined by Davide Donina (Italy) and Miroslawa Hladchenko (Ukraine), who study political and managerial issues in higher education. Also collaborating with the team is Svetlana Shenderova (University of Tempere), whose research is focused on the internationalization of higher education.
Among others, we seek answers to questions concerning the processes emerging from the contemporary model of higher education; methods of university management and the principles of their financing; methods of research evaluation; or the sources and dimensions of inequality in science and higher education.
We embrace the area of broadly understood university relations with its external stakeholders (the practical dimension of research), as well as activities in the field of science popularization (more precisely, social sciences). We initiate and willingly engage in projects aimed at implementing the idea of an “open university.”
We enjoy research challenges, and we are pleased that the results of our work have an increasing impact on the way people think about science in many academic centers around the world. We have carried out, or are currently carrying out, research projects financed by sources both domestic (NCN, NAWA, IDUB) and foreign (European Commission). Thus far, our expertise has supported the governments of Poland and Ukraine, the European Commission, OECD, Ernst & Young, as well as non-governmental organizations (Education Development Organization Service, CEDOS, FDPA), among others.
We maintain a constant global presence. We are connected with many institutions and universities in Europe and around the world by close cooperation and joint project of scientific or expert nature (most recently with academic centers in Toronto, Porto, Agder, Prague, Budapest, Oslo, Twente, Rijeka). We participate in large international research projects (Changing Academic Profession [CAP]; Structural Higher Education Reform: Development and Evaluation [SHERDE]; Higher Education Drop-Out and Completion in Europe [HEDOCE]), and we present the results of our research at acclaimed conferences around the world.