The mission of the Jewish Historical Institute is to spread knowledge about the heritage of the thousand years of Jewish presence on the Polish lands.
The institution realizes its aim among others through presenting its collections as temporary and permanent expositions, organizing various kinds of artistic events, academic conferences and public education meetings, as well as educational and publishing activity. The Institute is both a depository of the memory of the past and a living cultural center – a place that actively participates in the process of creating historical awareness and forming civic attitudes.
The mission of the Jewish Historical Institute is to care for the Jewish legacy preserved in the archives of our Institute. Our collections consist of seven million pages of varied documents. The most significant part of the collections is the Underground Archive of the Warsaw Ghetto, also known as the Ringelblum Archive.
At the Institute, we look after Jewish cultural monuments across Poland and see to their documentation. In addition, we are developing the largest Judaic library in Poland. As of today, the collection numbers over 85,000 volumes, including a few thousand old prints and manuscripts that require special maintenance.
We want to expand our publishing activity in order to publish, among others, Holocaust testimonies and works presenting the history of the Jews in Poland and around the world.
A special task of the JHI is the development of genealogical work. For people from around the world who are searching for their roots, our Institute’s archives, together with the experience and knowledge of our employees, are of invaluable help.
We protect and preserve Poland’s largest collection of works of art of Jewish interest which is held in our storerooms. It consists of over 15,000 pieces that we want to present to the widest possible audience. In our collection, there are works of artists of Jewish origin, as well as a rich collection of crafts and Judaica.
The Jewish Historical Institute is actively involved in educational and cultural activities that show a wide audience — especially those with a special interest in the subject — the history and culture of Polish Jews.
We want to continue our existing cooperation with partner institutions, as well as to establish new working relations with the biggest research and display centers in Poland and throughout the world that are devoted to the subjects of Jewish history, Holocaust memory and museum management.
We have the biggest research team in Poland dedicated to Jewish heritage. There are research teams working at the Jewish Historical Institute that have enabled us to develop our program of educational activities and lectures. Our primary and most important task involves conducting research in the areas of Jewish history and culture, with particular emphasis on JHI Archives-based research.
We create proper IT tools that will enable us to systematize the resources of our Institute and make them more readily available.