The main projects of the Ural Research and Education Centre (UIREC) have been presented at a meeting chaired by Dmitry Chernyshenko, Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation. The Minister of Science and Higher Education of Russia Valery Falkov, Plenipotentiary Representative of the President of the Russian Federation in the Ural Federal District Vladimir Yakushev, governors of the Sverdlovsk, Tyumen, Chelyabinsk, and Kurgan regions, as well as the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous District took part in the meeting, where the tasks of the research and education centres were discussed. In addition, the meeting was attended by rectors of higher regional educational institutions and business representatives - participants of the UIREC.
Dmitry Chernyshenko summed up the preliminary results of the implementation of the Science national project and announced the upcoming plans and tasks.
“On behalf of the President of the Russian Federation, within the frameworks of the Science national project, we must create 15 world-class research and education centres in Russia. Now we have 10. This year we will choose five more centres. Most of them are interregional ones, with a total coverage of 20 entities. It is important that the heads of the regions have attended the meeting. As practice shows, the performance indicators of these centres directly depend on the involvement of governors. REC is one of the tools for implementing development strategies. Many regional leaders are aware of this and come up with initiatives to create RECs on their territory, even without federal funds. I support these initiatives,” said Dmitry Chernyshenko.
The Deputy Prime Minister also noted that this year it is planned to approve performance criteria for evaluating RECs and maintaining their rating. At the same time, starting from 2023, rotation will be carried out annually, excluding the weakest and taking in their place the most productive centres from among the regional RECs.
“Thanks to the REC activities, there are high-tech jobs in the regions, and work processes are being improved. These are the steps towards Russia's technological leadership. During the time these world-class research and education centres have been operating, several dozen studies have been carried out and, jointly with businesses, their results have been tested in practice. New developments have been introduced in industry, mechanical engineering, waste sorting, and the aircraft industry. Some of them have been scaled,” added Dmitry Chernyshenko.
In his turn, Vladimir Yakushev said that at the moment there is a high interest in the activities of the UIREC of the real sector of the economy. Last year, financing of the events amounted to almost 5 billion roubles, 70% of which were extra-budgetary funds.
The Governor of the Chelyabinsk Region Alexey Texler, who became a member of the REC Supervisory Board this year, presented the main projects by the Ural Research and Education Centre.
“For the Chelyabinsk Region, REC is the most important part of the regional development strategy, a point of growth, a point of attraction for young students and researchers, an opportunity to combine the scientific potential of the region with business. For a little over a year we have been implementing the project of the Ural REC, and I think we have a good start. At the stage of REC creation, we had 11 projects within the frameworks of the formed priorities, and now we have deliberately increased the number of such projects to 17. For each project we carry out work from the point of view of world-class research novelty. What is being done is not import substitution, these are truly new world scientific developments,” said Alexey Texler.
At the same time, at the meeting, Valery Falkov noted that in order to solve world-class problems in the field of scientific and technological development, it is important to have the appropriate competencies; therefore, large transnational companies should be involved in the work of the UIREC.
“Business understands how to turn an idea into a technology or a product, knows foreign and Russian markets,” the minister stressed. “In this sense, we see companies as a driver within research and education centres.”
The Ural Interregional Research and Education Centre for Advanced Industrial Technologies and Materials was created within the frameworks of the Science national project to carry out applied scientific research and development of the world level. The centre participates in obtaining competitive technologies and products, their commercialization, as well as personnel training. The leading universities of the Sverdlovsk, Chelyabinsk and Kurgan regions - UrFU, SUSU and KSU - actively participate in the development of the UIREC. The Ural Federal University initiated the creation and performs the functions of the Project Office of the UIREC. The idea of creating a scientific and educational centre was supported by the Russian President Vladimir Putin during his visit to UrFU in July 2019.