Conference e-mail

The Aleksanteri Institute

Unioninkatu 33 (P.O. Box 42)
00014 University of Helsinki

Past Aleksanteri Conferences

Irina Dezhina (Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, Russia)

Science and Innovation Policy in Russia: Back to the "Catch up and Overtake" Model

The presentation is devoted to the observation and interpretation of Russia's science and innovation policy trends for the post-Soviet period, including external factors that shape science and innovation policy agenda, such as sanctions.

After 25 years of ongoing reforms, both positive and negative results may be seen. There is a slight increase in the number of scientists and a growing share of young researchers. At the same time, "generation gap" (lack of middle-aged researchers) is not closed and brain drain continues to be an issue despite attempts to involve Diaspora researchers to an improvement of science base. Federal funding for research and development (R&D) has increased but its share in total country expenditures on R&D is too high and business still has to be "pushed" to innovate. Russian scientists publish more in peer-review journals but citation score is low. More research is implemented in universities but the reform of the Russian Academy of Sciences negatively affects the productivity in fundamental research. Venture investments are shrinking and knowledge abortion is a serious weakness of the innovation system. Government reports about successes and scientific community return to the alarming rhetoric of the 90-s.

Strategic documents indicate that there is a revival of the well-known Soviet idea to "to catch up and overtake" developed countries. Changing state of foreign affairs and sanctions do influence, though indirectly, decision-making in State science and innovation policy.