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Abstract

Poland is at a critical point in determining whether it will provide the type of intellectual property protection afforded in other countries. Based on its current programs, Poland clearly recognizes that it must improve its infrastructure. It is imperative for Poland to institute and develop new science and technology policies. As a result, Poland must pay attention to issues like privatization and intellectual property because newly privatized companies will lean on patents and other rights as footholds against their competitors. Poland must also address issues concerning physical access and communications and electronic access to the country. Poland's overall science and technology report card is weak. One recent study found that seventy percent of Poland's products are five yeas behind world standards, and half are ten years behind. Attracting international collaborations to Poland will depend largely on the country's future innovative capacity. Although Poland affords some protection to inventors and provides some patentability, Polish inventors do not vigorously pursue patent protection. The lack of Polish inventions pursued in the United States might suggest that patent protection is so bleak in Poland that industry does not see the benefits of filing for patents abroad. Alternatively, it may indicate that Poland's efforts are simply not at the forefront of inventive ideas. Poland's government believes that the world will see a twenty-five year long period of good business trends and is confident that Poland will share in that prosperity. Several factors, including the solidifying of the nation's infrastructure and increased exportation to industrialize nations, indicate that Poland is on its way to seeing such prosperity. As the nation uses its intellectual property laws to gain a strong foothold in the realm of technological leadership, the world should keep a watchful eye on Poland as we move into the next century.