Born in Kłodzko on 18 May 1957. Married and a father of two children. In 1975, he moved to Wrocław where he got his first jobs - he worked in the grain-milling industry, became a junior engine driver and was an instructor of photography. He was a member of the Independent Student Association and became its Chairman in 1982. He obtained Master's Degrees in Philosophy and Cultural Studies. He worked in the Department of Sociology of the Wrocław Academy of Economics and in the Institute of Sociology and Cultural Studies at the University of Wrocław.
He gave up his doctoral research when he was elected President of Wrocław in 1990. He stayed in office for 11 years. In 1997, he was elected a Senator, and later, in 2001, Member of the Polish Parliament. He was re-elected in 2005, 2007 and 2011. At the same time, from 2007 to 2014, he held the position of the Minister of Culture and National Heritage.
MEP since 2014.
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