The RF President’s meeting with Viktor Vekselberg//Administration of the RF President. 13.05.2010 - URL:
http://news.kremlin.ru/news/7743. Date of access: 07.02. The Mandate of the Foundation for the Development of the Center of Development and Commercialization of High Technologies (Skolkovo Foundation) “ as approved at the meeting of the Council of the Foundation for the Development of the Center of Development and Commercialization of High Technologies (Skolkovo Foundation)” and enacted on 28 October 2010. – URL: http://www.i-gorod.com/en/newslist/201011001-mand/. Extraction date: 07.02.2011.
Social Sphere Accordingly, leading Russian universities, research centers and foundations expressed their interest in contribution to projects under the Skolkovo’s aegis and started signing bilateral memoranda on cooperation with the Foundation for the Development of the Center of Development and Commercialization of High Technologies (Skolkovo Foundation). The list of university signatories comprises MSU, SPSU, Novosibirsk and Kazan state universities, the Bauman MGTU, MFTI, and SU-HSE1. It is planned that since 2011 the leading Russian universities will be entering into joint projects with their foreign counterparts on building laboratories whose operations will be funded by Skolkovo Foundation’s grants. Presently, as many as 20 such grants are envisaged to be awarded. The initiative appears to a certain extent similar to the RF Ministry of Education and Science’s megagrant project.
As concerns research organizations, it is Russian Research Center “Kurchatov Institute” that became a major partner to Skolkovo. The RRC should contribute with its research and technological base located in the only national center for nano-, bio-, information and cognitive sciences and technologies2.
As of early 2011, the Skolkovo Foundation had registered 16 research centers and institutes that became participants in the project. It is suggested that most projects should be oriented towards technology export3. That, on the one hand, proves some experts’ concerns that an absence of the domestic market for innovative products would entail an outflow of new technologies. On the other hand, export of technologies means an increase of competitiveness of Russian hi-tech developments and, to a certain extent, a turn to a “positive” trend, for so far Russian technological imports are far greater than exports.
Despite great expectations, the process of development of the innocity once again exposed problematic aspects of the governmental innovation policy. Those are, first, the selected approaches falling behind the global trends of innovation systems’ development. Thus, the concept of building a “closed”, in many respects, city and a clearly visible in the Skolkovo’s Mandate linear model of innovation process (from R&D towards development) is at odds with the contemporary logic of innovation-based development. Nowadays, it is increasingly seldom a case of innovations advancing in isolation4, as networks expand and so do stakeholders, institutions and end-users’ networks. The trend implies abandonment from closeness in all its senses and transition to “open innovations” and global innovation networks, and revaluation of significance of various kinds of “zones”.
Second, one can notice some idealization of foreign experiences coupled with the use of a combination of different Western approaches: the Skolkovo’s fathers have opted for a few models at once, rather than for a single model, for instance, Silicon Valley (though it is much referenced to in the context of the building of Skolkovo). They consider and partially adopt elements of techno parks, technopolises, and one can trace some analogy with the UAE’s Masdar City. An attempt to integrate elements of different models is a very challenging task, as it is not easy to ensure their synergy.
Skolkovo razdvigayet granitsy//Rossiyskaya gazeta. 21.09. 2010. - URL: http://www.i-gorod.com/press/ 20100921003/. Date of access: 07.02.2011.
Fedorov E. Transformatsia zakonodatelstva v 2011 godu//Nauka i tekhnologii Rossii. 12.01. 2011. URL:
http://strf.ru/material.aspxd_no=36176&CatalogId=223&print=1. Date of access: 07.02.2011.
Draft Ministerial Report on the OECD Innovation Strategy: Innovation to Strengthen Growth and Address Global and Social Challenges. Key Findings. Paris: OECD, February 26, 2010. P. 6.
RUSSIAN ECONOMY IN trends and outlooks Third, as before, the Government failed to run a hindsight evaluation of initiatives implemented to date. If completed, it would have enabled one to advance more efficiently, particularly with a due account of past failures. With the record of building science cities and research campuses at hand and being aware of a subsequent evolution of “closed” cities, one needs to think through additional measures to cope with phenomena, particularly social ones, which might emerge in the course of the city’s “ageing”. Thus, sooner or later, a limited number of land sites at Skolkovo will ultimately hurdle its expansion. The planned approach, which provides for leasing the housing, rather than selling it to the residents1, does not help overcome potential constraints facing Skolkovo’s growth.
So far Russian corporations and the national research community have remained moderately optimistic regarding Skolkovo’s prospects. According to a sociological survey Corus Consulting ran on high- and medium-level Russian corporate executives, 27% of respondents believe the project is going to be a success, another 23% holds the opposite view, while another 48% considers the idea to be a good one in principle, but doubts the possibility for its actual implementation2.
5.5.8. The Government’s Plans on Shaping Efficient Science In the nearest future, the Government is going to bolster initiatives aimed at increase of the research sphere’s efficiency. The initiatives in question are laid down in the draft Strategy of innovation development of Russian Federation through 2020 the RF Ministry of Economic Development unveiled on 31 December 2010. The Strategy specifies the following development priorities for the national research complex:
The first priority, whose implementation has already been underway, is formed by a set of measures on boosting the university science. That said, the text of the Strategy implicitly holds that over time universities should substitute for RAS as core centers of the national fundamental science. Specifically, the document reads that research universities “should form a nucleus of the new integrated research-educational complex that will ensure …conduct of a significant proportion of the fundamental and applied research”.
The second priority concerns the sphere of applied research and implies establishment of national research centers, particularly on the model of NRS “Kurchatov Institute”. Whether the latter’s performance is adequate and, accordingly, whether it is worth replicating this model sparked animated discussions in the research community. Their opinions, as a rule, appear not that positive. Meanwhile, it is not easy to understand how the RIS has advanced, as there are no objective data in this respect. But there are concerns that the model results in monopolizing a given sphere of research, which hardly can form an incentive to boost efficiency.
The third priority is the human resources policy. The Strategy enumerates quite a number of measures in this respect, including a few brand new ones, such as introducing a status of the “federal research fellow” or implementing a pilot program on attraction onto executive positions at federal and research universities of specialists with the respective record with leading foreign universities.
Minutes of the meeting of the Commission on modernization and technological development of Russia’s economy. The Administration of the RF President. 29.04. 2010. – URL: http://news.kremlin.ru/transcripts/7585. Date of access: 07.02.2011.
Predprinimateli ne veryat v uspeshnost Skolkovo// Nauka i tekhnologii Rossii. 01.10. 2010. – URL:
http://strf.ru/science.aspxCatalogId=222&d_no=33960. Date of access: 07.02.2011.
Social Sphere The fourth priority is improvement of financial mechanisms, focus on priority scientific and technological development avenues, optimization of grantor organizations’ performance.
The work in this direction is currently underway, too.
So, the clearly manifested themselves over 2010 scientific and innovation policy priorities may further unfold as long-term ones, which, in principle, should help enhance the quality of the public regulation.
*** The year of 2010 the current controversial state of the national science. On the one hand, judging a string of indicators, its disruption continued, particularly as far as cadres are concerned. On the other hand, its significance is propped up by certain selected organizations (the status universities) and territories (Skolkovo) wherein a sizeable budget funding has poured in.
From the perspective of innovation activities, the business sector appeared very heterogeneous, with large corporations no longer being overly passive, albeit not so much in anticipation of research organizations, universities and start-ups’ produce.
The Government attempted to establish linkages between science and businesses and boost development of small-sized start-ups, but the policy was poorly coordinated at the interdepartmental level. That said, the Government’s presence in the national research and technological complex still is excessive and it tends to dictate, rather than regulate.
The Government’s active engagement has produced an adverse impact on the development of network interactions, the rise of new grass-root initiatives and their natural spread. That is why horizontal ties, the institution of intermediaries, small innovative entrepreneurship, flexibility and diversity of interactions between science and business – all the components underpinning an innovation system’s sustainability- have so far remained at their nascent state.
Section 6. Institutional Problems 6.1. Public Sector and New Privatization Policy 6.1.1. Public Sector Scope General Dynamics in the Scope of Public Sector in 2008–The currently available official, quantitative data on federal property allows one to infer that the Russian Government kept reducing its direct involvement in the national economy late in the first decade of the 21st century (Table 1).
Table Dynamics of the number of organizations using federal property, and property assets registered in the federal property register in 2008 – 2010 (as units) Joint-stock companies, Federally-owned uni- in which the Russian Movable and immovDate tary enterprises Federation holds an Land plots able assets (FOUSs) interest as a shareholder as of January 1, 2008 5709a 3674à … … as of January 1, 2009 3765à 3337à/3500b/3047c 1293788d 67000e as of January 1, 2010. 3517 a 2950a/2646 f 1276572g 126761g May 2010.h … 3124i 1704958 570 956 808 ha a – according to the data included into privatization programs for the next year;
b – according to the data published by the Federal Agency for State Property Management with reference to the federal property register as of mid-January 2009 ;
c – the number of blocks of shares (interest, stakes) in business companies held by the federal government, according to the data reported in the Progress Report for 2008 issued by the Federal Agency for State Property Management ( net of 136 joint-stock companies which are subject to a special right – “Golden Share” – in participation in their management ) ;
d – according to the data published by the Federal Agency for State Property Management with reference to the federal property register as of mid-January 2009 ;
e – according to the data published by the Federal Agency for State Property Management with reference to the federal property register as of mid-January 2009, whereas the Progress Report for 2008 of the Federal Agency for State Property Management specifies that as of January 1, 2009 the immovable assets registered in the registry include 33,955 land plots, with a total of more than 150 land plots for which the Russian Federation has a registered land title ;
f – the number of blocks of shares in joint-stock companies owned by the Russian Federation, based on the federal property register according to the data of the Federal Agency for State Property Management ;
g – according to the data of the Federal Agency for State Property Management with reference to the federal property register ;
h – according to the data The Federal Agency for State Property Management with reference to the federal property register ;
i – the number of joint-stock companies which are managed by the federal government through the Federal Agency for State Property Management.
Source: The Forecast Plan ( Program ) of Federal Property for 2009 and the Guidelines for Privatization of Federal Property for 2010 and 2011 ; The Forecast Plan (Program) of Federal Property for 2010 and the Guidelines for Privatization of Federal Property for 2011 and 2012, the Progress Report for 2008 issued by the Federal Agency for State Property Management, M., 2009, The Forecast Plan (Program) of Federal Property and the Guidelines for Privatization of Federal Property for 2011 – 2013, www.rosim.ru, www.economy.gov.ru.
This is mostly referred to business economic agents who perform the state business function, which is basically supported by the Rosstat’s (The Federal State Statistics Service) data RUSSIAN ECONOMY IN trends and outlooks which reflect the composition of the public sector of the economy and its contribution in final figures of business activity (Table 2 è 3).
According to the data obtained through a Rosstat’s monitoring of the public sector, the number of the economic agents monitored between mid-2008 and mid-2010 changed as follows (Table 2).
Table The number of public sector organizations registered with territorial offices of the Federal Agency for State Property Management and agencies for federal property management of the constituent territories of the Russian Federation in 2008–2010.