The Institute was established due to needs of national water resources management and industry. Investigations were specially directed towards maritime and inland hydraulics as well as soil mechanics.
The research works are carried out within following earth-related sciences: oceanology, hydrology, water resources management and geology.
The research schedule was based both on actual needs of industry and interests of our scientific staff.
Initially, the Institute was placed within the structure of Gdansk University of Technology, in the building of the present Faculty of Civil Engineering. The hydraulic laboratory was developed, which was used also for educational purposes. Due to rapid growth, Institute has moved to the former Opats Palace. We used also one floor in the building of The Szewalski Institute of Fluid-Flow Machinery in Gdansk-Wrzeszcz.
In 1969, the special open-air big hydraulic laboratory was created in Gdansk Oliwa. The initial researches, carried out on the big-scale physical models, were related to the Gdansk North Port project and Swina Straight project. The laboratory is placed in beautiful green Happiness Valley in Gdansk Oliwa. Finally, the whole Institute moved there in 80-ties. Maritime Research Laboratory Lubiatowo was developed, as well as Wave Laboratory in Gdansk North Port. In 1998 a modern, 65 meters long wave flume was built.
IBW PAN took a part in several important projects related to Polish water resources management (e.g. research studies of Tresna, Włocławek, Solina, Koronowo dams). Institute has also participated in the number of international projects, being in close cooperation with foreign scientific institutes.
Nowadays, the scientific works are carried out within the structure of 4 departments:
IBW PAN belongs to the Fourth Department of Technical Sciences of Polish Academy of Sciences and is permitted for granting Ph.D. deegrees in the field of civil engineering. Institute’s budget is covered in a big part by Scientific Research Commitee (KBN); we are classified as first-class scientific unit in KBN ranking.
Actually, number of research projects come both from national institutions and from European Union programs.
Our scientific staff participates in a number of international conferences and workshops. We publish number of articles, both in national papers and worldwide, presenting the results of our work.
We publish also our own journal, Archives of Hydroengineering and Environmental Mechanics (AHEM). It is issued quarterly.
IBW PAN among its history was publisher of the following issues:
On December the 1st of 2002 the three-year activity of Centre for Environmental Engineering and Mechanics has started. The main objective is to extend the international scientific cooperation within European Union structures (European Research Area) and recovering the former cooperation between Middle and Eastern Europe countries.