July-December 2020



Conducted by

European research agency (ERA)

Lead researchers

Svitlana Horna

About this project

The perception of Ukraine in Poland is part of a comprehensive project to study the perception of Ukraine and Ukrainian culture abroad in a number of countries identified as priority and important in the Ukrainian Institute’s Strategy for 2020-2024.

For the first time, the project explores the attitudes and expectations of foreign audiences regarding Ukraine, its culture and opportunities for cooperation, their awareness of modern culture and cultural heritage of Ukraine.

The research was carried out by the method of in-depth expert interviews with representatives of foreign institutions in the field of culture, education, science, civil society, as well as local and central authorities, the diplomatic corps, international organizations, the Ukrainian professional environment abroad and foreign Ukrainians.

The results of the research made it possible to determine the most popular formats of cultural diplomacy projects at the bilateral level and develop work plans for the Ukrainian Institute.

This study was conducted with the support of the International Renaissance Foundation


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Ukraine’s perception in Poland

  • There are three main themes around which the heterogeneous perception of Ukraine in Poland is formed: political events in Ukraine, Ukrainian immigration to Poland, and a common historical heritage.
  • Ukrainian culture is better known due to folklore, often in the (kitschy) form of “sharovarshchyna,” thus, the contemporary cultural product requires a significant increase in the promotion.
  • There is a need to established permanent bilateral platforms for inviting cultural figures from both sides, such as scholarships or art residencies in Ukraine, to create opportunities to develop cultural dialogue on a permanent, continuous basis.
  • It is necessary to update the formats of representation of cultural phenomena, to move away from stereotyped outdated images, present those already developed in the past in a modernized version (for example, feminism of Lesya Ukrainka).
  • It is necessary to determine the ways and strategies of presenting cultural phenomena in Poland, which respondents define as common (for example, respondents associate Kazimir Malevich, kobzar tradition, Cossacks, Ivan Mazepa, and even borsch with Poland): either as a shared cultural heritage or more clearly outline their links to Ukrainian culture