Administrative divisions of Poland

Last updated

The administrative division of Poland since 1999 has been based on three levels of subdivision. The territory of Poland is divided into voivodeships (provinces); these are further divided into powiats (counties or districts), and these in turn are divided into gminas (communes or municipalities). Major cities normally have the status of both gmina and powiat. Poland currently has 16 voivodeships, 380 powiats (including 66 cities with powiat status), and 2,478 gminas. [1]

Contents

The current system was introduced pursuant to a series of acts passed by the Polish parliament in 1998, and came into effect on 1 January 1999. Previously (in the period from 1975 to 1998) there had been 49 smaller voivodeships, and no powiats (see subdivisions of the Polish People's Republic). The reform created 16 larger voivodeships (largely based on and named after historical regions) and reintroduced powiats.

The boundaries of the voivodeships do not always reflect the historical borders of Polish regions. Around half of the Silesian Voivodeship belongs to the historical province of Lesser Poland. Similarly, the area around Radom, which historically is part of Lesser Poland, is located in the Masovian Voivodeship. Also, the Pomeranian Voivodeship includes only the eastern extreme of historical Pomerania, as the western part is in Germany and the eastern border has shifted again and again.

Division of Poland into voivodeships and powiats (2007) POLSKA mapa woj z powiatami.png
Division of Poland into voivodeships and powiats (2007)

Voivodeships

Poland is currently divided into 16 provinces known as voivodeships (Polish : województwa, singular województwo). Legally they are called "units of I rate" (jednostki I stopnia). Administrative authority at voivodeship level is shared between a central government-appointed governor, called the voivode (usually a political appointee), an elected assembly called the sejmik, and an executive board (zarząd województwa) chosen by that assembly. The leader of that executive is called the marszałek.

#VoivodeshipPolish nameCapital city (cities)
1 Greater Poland wielkopolskie Poznań
2 Kuyavia-Pomerania kujawsko-pomorskie Bydgoszcz and Toruń
3 Lesser Poland małopolskie Kraków
4 Łódź łódzkie Łódź
5 Lower Silesia dolnośląskie Wrocław
6 Lublin lubelskie Lublin
7 Lubusz lubuskie Gorzów Wielkopolski and Zielona Góra
8 Masovia mazowieckie Warsaw
9 Opole opolskie Opole
10 Podlaskie podlaskie Białystok
11 Pomerania pomorskie Gdańsk
12 Silesia śląskie Katowice
13 Subcarpathia podkarpackie Rzeszów
14 Holy Cross Province świętokrzyskie Kielce
15 Warmia-Masuria warmińsko-mazurskie Olsztyn
16 West Pomerania zachodniopomorskie Szczecin

Powiats

Each voivodeship is divided into a number of smaller entities known as powiats (counties), which are legally "units of II rate" (jednostki II stopnia). The number of powiats per voivodeship ranges from 12 (Opole Voivodeship) to 42 (Masovian Voivodeship). They include two types of administrative divisions:

Gminas

The "units of III rate" (jednostki III stopnia) are 2477 gminas (also called commune or municipality). A powiat is typically divided into a number of gminas (between 3 and 19), although the city counties constitute single gminas. A gmina has an elected council as well as a directly elected mayor (known as prezydent in large towns, burmistrz in most urban and urban-rural gminas, and wójt in rural gminas). A gmina may be classed as:

Smaller units

Gminas are generally sub-divided into smaller units, called osiedle or dzielnica in towns, and sołectwo in rural areas. However, these units are of lesser importance and are subordinate in status to the gmina.

Historical subdivisions

Polish territory has been subject to significant changes over the course of Polish history. Therefore, the modern Polish administrative division, while on some levels similar to some historical ones, is quite different from others. Historical Polish administrative divisions can be divided into the following periods:

See also

Cultural and economic:

Related Research Articles

Voivodeships of Poland Highest-level administrative divisions of Poland

A voivodeship is the highest-level administrative division of Poland, corresponding to a "province" in many other countries. The term has been in use since the 14th century, and is commonly translated in English as "province" or "state".

Powiat Local government in Poland

A powiat is the second-level unit of local government and administration in Poland, equivalent to a county, district or prefecture in other countries. The term "powiat" is most often translated into English as "county" or "district".

Białystok Voivodeship (1975–1998)

Białystok Voivodeship was a unit of administrative division and local government in Poland from 1975 to 1998, when it was superseded by the Podlaskie Voivodeship. Its capital city was Białystok. It was formed in 1975 from part of the existing Białystok Voivodeship. The region was 10,055 km2 (3,882 sq mi), and its population in 1994, about 700 000 inhabitants. It was divided into 20 cities and 50 municipalities. It bordered with four Voivodeships: Suwałki, Łomża, Siedlce and Biała Podlaska and until 1991 with the Soviet Union, and later with Belarus.

Karkonosze County County in Lower Silesian Voivodeship, Poland

Karkonosze County is a unit of territorial administration and local government (powiat) in Lower Silesian Voivodeship, south-western Poland. It came into being on January 1, 1999, as a result of the Polish local government reforms passed in 1998.

Kreis Wirsitz

Kreis Wirsitz was one of 14 or 15 Kreise in the northern administrative district of Bromberg, in the Prussian province of Posen. The county existed with essentially the same boundaries beginning in 1815 as a German Kreise then from 1919 as a Polish Powiat until 1975. Its administrative center was the town of Wyrzysk (Wirsitz). The county contained additional municipalities such as Bialosliwie, Lobzenica (Lobsens), Miasteczko Krajeńskie (Friedheim), Mrocza (Mrotschen), Nakło nad Notecią (Nakel), Sadki and Wysoka (Wissek) plus over 100 villages. Many villages that had Germanic names were changed to completely different Polish names following World War II, such as Radzicz. In 1954 the central government abolished the commune as the smallest unit of government, dividing the county into 28 clusters. In 1973 municipalities were restored. After the administrative reform of 1975, the territory of the county was divided between the new (lower) region of Bydgoszcz and the region Piła. The territory of the defunct county was annexed by Naklo County, Kujavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship and Pila County, Greater Poland Voivodeship. Wyrzysk was incorporated into Piła County.

Administrative divisions of Ukraine Political divisions of Ukraine

Ukraine has several levels of administrative subdivisions. The first level of subdivision consists of 27 regions:

Gmina Municipal-level administrative division of Poland

The gmina is the principal unit of the administrative division of Poland, similar to a municipality. As of January 1, 2019, there were 2477 communes throughout the country, encompassing 940 cities and over 43,000 villages.

Malbork Voivodeship

The Malbork Voivodeship was a unit of administrative division and local government in the Kingdom of Poland from 1454/1466 until the partitions in 1772–1795. Together with the Pomeranian and Chełmno Voivodeships and the Prince-Bishopric of Warmia it formed the historical province of Royal Prussia. Its capital was at Marienburg (Malbork).

Cieszyn County County in Silesian Voivodeship, Poland

Cieszyn County is a unit of territorial administration and local government (powiat) in Silesian Voivodeship, southern Poland, on the Czech and Slovak border. It came into being on January 1, 1999, as a result of the Polish local government reforms passed in 1998.

Łuków County County in Lublin Voivodeship, Poland

Łuków County is a unit of territorial administration and local government (powiat) in Lublin Voivodeship, eastern Poland. It was established on January 1, 1999, as a result of the Polish local government reforms passed in 1998. Its administrative seat and largest town is Łuków, which lies 76 kilometres (47 mi) north of the regional capital Lublin. The only other town in the county is Stoczek Łukowski, lying 30 km (19 mi) west of Łuków.

Opoczno County County in Łódź Voivodeship, Poland

Opoczno County is a unit of territorial administration and local government (powiat) in Łódź Voivodeship, south-east Poland. It came into being on January 1, 1999, as a result of the Polish local government reforms passed in 1998. Its administrative seat and largest town is Opoczno, which lies 72 kilometres (45 mi) south-east of the regional capital Łódź. The only other town in the county is Drzewica, lying 15 km (9 mi) north-east of Opoczno.

Bydgoszcz County County in Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland

Bydgoszcz County is a unit of territorial administration and local government (powiat) in Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship, north-central Poland. It was created on 1 January 1999 as a result of the Polish local government reforms passed in 1998. Its administrative seat is the city of Bydgoszcz, although the city is not part of the county. The only towns in Bydgoszcz County are Solec Kujawski, which lies 17 km (11 mi) east of Bydgoszcz, and Koronowo, 23 km (14 mi) north of Bydgoszcz.

Polesie Voivodeship

Polesie Voivodeship was an administrative unit of interwar Poland (1918–1939), named after the historical region of Polesia. It was created by the Council of Ministers of the Second Polish Republic on February 19, 1921, as a result of peace agreement signed with the Russian and Ukrainian SSRs in Riga. Polesie Voivodeship was the largest province of interwar Poland. It ceased to function in September 1939, following the Nazi-German and Soviet invasion of Poland in accordance with a secret protocol of the Nazi–Soviet Pact of aggression.

Subdivisions of Congress Poland

Congress Poland was subdivided several times from its creation in 1815 until its dissolution in 1918. Congress Poland was divided into departments, a relic from the times of the French-dominated Duchy of Warsaw. In 1816 the administrative divisions were changed to forms that were more traditionally Polish: voivodeships, obwóds and powiats. Following the November Uprising, the subdivisions were again changed in 1837 to bring the subdivisions closer to the structure of the Russian Empire when guberniyas (governorates) were introduced. In this way, Congress Poland was gradually transformed into the "Vistulan Country". Over the next several decades, various smaller reforms were carried out, either changing the smaller administrative units or merging/splitting various guberniyas.

Subdivisions of the Second Polish Republic

Subdivisions of the Second Polish Republic became an issue immediately after the creation of the Second Polish Republic in 1918. The Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth had been partitioned in the late 18th century. Various parts of new Polish territory had belonged to different administrative structures of Austrian Empire, Imperial Germany and Russian Empire.

National Electoral Commission (Poland)

The National Electoral Commission is the only permanent election commission in Poland. The second permanent electoral organs are komisarze wyborczy, which number is 51.

LGBT-free zone Region declared to be free of "LGBT ideology"

LGBT-free zones or LGBT ideology–free zones are municipalities and regions of Poland that have declared themselves unwelcoming of an alleged "LGBT ideology", in order to ban equality marches and other LGBT events. As of June 2020, some 100 municipalities, encompassing about a third of the country, have adopted resolutions which have led to them being called "LGBT-free zones".

References

  1. "Population. Size and structure and vital statistics in Poland by territorial division in 2017. As of December, 31" (PDF) (in Polish). Główny Urząd Statystyczny (Central Statistical Office). Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  2. www.ideo.pl, ideo- (2019-04-27). "Gminy wiejskie chcą lepszej ochrony swych granic". Prawo.pl (in Polish). Retrieved 2021-02-15.