Young Poles in Times of Dramatic Change: Refugees, Identity and Social Engagement

Young people have experienced profound changes in the way Polish national identity is expressed in public since the conservative Law and Justice Party (PiS) gained far-reaching control of Polish politics in 2015. This report exam­ines young people’s political attitudes in conjunction with their views on the arrival of over two million refugees from Ukraine in 2022, and their views on those refugees who have been trying to get into the EU through the Polish- Belarusian border since 2021. Views on both events allow us to better under­stand young people’s sense of Polishness. Moreover, opinions on national his­tory are central to understandings of identity, as are young people’s percep­tions of Poland’s place in Europe.

The fears and uncertainties young Poles express are analysed in an original online survey conducted in March 2022 among 2 002 respondents aged 16–34, combined with insights from focus group discussions conducted in May 2022 among a set of young participants and participants aged 65 and older in the cit­ies of Gdańsk and Lublin. Such a combination of methodologies allows unique insights into the reasoning behind the patterns that a survey can identify.

You can read more about the report on the ZOiS website, or read or download the report below.

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