In the following the all-embracing strategizing of regional development practice in contemporary Poland will be depicted in more detail. The chapter explores how the existing development strategies of the three selected Polish regions came into being and how they affect development activities in the regions today. According to official statements, the regional development strategies (RDS) are the major documents of development planning of the 16 Polish voivodships and thus the most important policy documents drawn up by the regional governments. They specify the major goals, objectives and priorities of development policy of the regions. And they are supposed to serve as focal points of future development and as guidelines for all operational development activities:

A strategy of the development of a province is the policy tool of the province’s self-government, enabling it to support developmental processes. It expresses aspirations of a regional community and its will to achieve common objectives included in a vision of the development that determines priorities and ways of the realisation of planned activities. (…) It is the most important manifesto document of self-government in the province. Without the strategy it would be very difficult to effectively manage the development of the region and to organize partnership co-operation with the main actors of the regional scene

(Podkarpackie Development Strategy 2000–6, English version: 7, emphasis as original)