Academy Executives Present Roadmap for Innovation to Russian Leaders

Scientists in the Academy's Innovation & Sustainability program have advised Russian Federation President Dmitry Medvedev on steps his country must take to evolve an innovation economy.

Published September 13, 2010

Academy CEO Ellis Rubinstein last week delivered a report to Russian Federation President Dmitry Medvedev on steps his country must take to evolve an innovation economy. The report, "Yaroslavl Roadmap 10-15-20: 10 Years to Implement, 15 Steps to Take, 20 Pitfalls to Avoid-International Experience and the Path Forward for Russian Innovation Policy," was produced by scientists in the Academy's Innovation & Sustainability program.

Honorable Ilya Ponomarev, Chair of the High Tech Subcommittee of the Russian State Duma, presented details from the 83-page document during the plenary session of Global Policy Forum 2010, hosted by President Medvedev, Sept. 9-10 in Yaroslavl. During the conference, Academy President Rubinstein and Vice President, Innovation & Sustainability, Karin Ezbiansky Pavese led a roundtable dialogue on "The Roadmap," which describes the innovation policies, successes, and challenges of four countries-Israel, Finland, India, and the U.S.-and Taiwan Province, China. Based on analyses of how those regions developed innovation economies, and on a study of the current state of Russia's economy compared to the priorities of President Medvedev, the report offers 15 specific recommendations. It also highlights 20 pitfalls for Russia to avoid.

Pavese, who led the Academy team that authored the report, said, "This 12-week project was focused on thematic trends in how a subset of locales has successfully fostered innovation. The report is meant to be a set of practical recommendations to be used by President Medvedev and his staff as they continue to develop innovation policy for Russia.

"Under President Medvedev, the Russian Federation has set a priority to develop a robust national innovation system, and to transform itself from an economy reliant on natural resource production into a knowledge-based economy," she said. "Modernization of the society as a whole will be accompanied by a thorough integration of cutting-edge science and innovation into productive activity, fulfilling the human and intellectual potentials of the country and creating entirely new areas of world-class technology."

"The Yaroslavl Roadmap 10-15-20" includes recommendations that Russia focus on basic research to ensure a pipeline of cutting-edge technology and human talent, and that the country define mission-oriented grand challenges based on its needs and strengths in areas of energy; communications, transportation, telecom, and space technology; biotechnology and life sciences; and IT and supercomputing. The report also advocates establishing trusted and complete intellectual property law and clear IP ownership rules for government-funded research, mandating international standards and regulations, and creating a network of state procurement agencies. Download the full report here.