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A Tricky Subject – archaeology in opinion polls on cultural heritage. Recent examples from Poland

Agnieszka Oniszczuk

Cite this as: Oniszczuk, A. 2021 A Tricky Subject – archaeology in opinion polls on cultural heritage. Recent examples from Poland, Internet Archaeology 57. https://doi.org/10.11141/ia.57.14

Summary

Visitors observing long boats arriving at the Slavs and Vikings' Centre Wolin – Jomsborg – Vineta in north-western Poland, July 2013, © Agata Byszewska.
Visitors observing long boats arriving at the Slavs and Vikings' Centre Wolin – Jomsborg – Vineta in north-western Poland, July 2013, © Agata Byszewska.

Understanding the public by analysing the wants, interests and expectations regarding their involvement in archaeology is one of the strategic aims of Europae Archaeologiae Consilium (EAC). Cultural heritage has been the topic of several public opinion polls in Poland over the past few years. In 2011 and 2015, the Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa (National Institute of Cultural Heritage) carried out two representative surveys. Subsequent polls focusing on more specific issues or groups of respondents were undertaken in 2015, 2017 and 2018. Other data from Poland come from the 2017 Special Eurobarometer survey on cultural heritage. They can be contrasted with archaeology-orientated opinion polls: a Europe-wide survey carried out within the NEARCH project led by Inrap (French National Institute for Preventive Archaeological Research) and several smaller-scale projects, which might be treated as starting points for more representative research.

The scope of these surveys includes: public perception of cultural heritage and archaeology, subjective value of cultural heritage, attitudes towards archaeology, relevance of archaeology for the present (also in terms of the socio-economic potential of archaeological heritage), people's interaction with archaeology and archaeological heritage, sources of information about archaeological heritage etc.

Comparison of these data will serve to establish the relevance of surveys for archaeological heritage management. The author will also examine if the specific nature of archaeological heritage is reflected in the surveys and how the public feels about its most hidden heritage. Based on the results of her analysis, the author will look at the desired scope of a survey aimed at filling the identified gaps and shaped to fit the needs of evidence-based archaeological heritage management.

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  • Keywords: Archaeological heritage public opinion polls, archaeological heritage management, cultural heritage public opinion polls, evidence-based cultural heritage management
  • Accepted: 6 Jan 2021. Published: 17 Mar 2021
  • Funding: The publication of this article is funded by the European Archaeological Council.
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Corresponding author: Agnieszka OniszczukORCID logo
aoniszczuk@nid.pl
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa (National Heritage Board of Poland)

Full text

Figure 1: Source: One of the questions from a representative survey carried out by the National Institute of Cultural Heritage in 2015. Fortuna-Marek and Stępnik 2017, 34.

Figure 2: Questions asked in representative surveys carried out by the National Institute of Cultural Heritage (A) in 2011. Source: (A) Kozioł et al. 2013, 73; In 2015 (B) Dąbrowski and Kozioł 2017, 53.

Figure 3: Data from unpublished survey of Local Action Groups carried out for the National Institute of Cultural Heritage in 2017.

Figure 4: One of the questions from a Special Eurobarometer survey on cultural heritage from 2017. Source: Specjalny Eurobarometer 466. Polska, 4, QB11.

Figure 5: Data from un unpublished report from a project entitled Social Engagement in Archaeology ('Zaangażowanie społeczności lokalnej w ochronę dziedzictwa archeologicznego w Polsce') carried out in 2015 by a team of researchers led by Dr Małgorzata Kot from the University of Warsaw (Kot et al. 2015

Figure 6: Selected of answers to a questions asked in the survey carried out in 2015 within the NEARCH project. Source: Martelli-Banégas et al. 2015b, Q13.

Figure 7: One of the questions from the survey carried out in 2015 within the NEARCH project. Based on: Martelli-Banégas et al. 2015b, Q11.

Figure 8: Data from representative surveys carried out by the National Institute of Cultural Heritage (formerly the NHBoP) (A) in 2011 and 2015 (B). Source: (A) Dąbrowski and Kozioł 2017, 55; Kozioł et al. 2013, 81; (B) Dąbrowski and Kozioł 2017, 57. Purely participatory activities are marked with a frame.

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