Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The Slow Process of Brain Death: the Crisis of Science and the State of Scientific Research in modern Russia

Белка в колесе - Google Search

Вручение президентских премий молодым учёным - 11 февраля 2014 года, 17:50  Москва, Кремль

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Crisis of Scientific Research in Russia - Google Search

The Continuing Crisis in Russian Science

Nearly a fifth of scientists are considering abandoning the U.S.

Science in the New Russia: Crisis, Aid, Reform
by Loren R Graham  (Author) , Irina Dezhina (Author) , Loren R. Graham  (Author)

Science in the New Russia: Crisis, Aid, Reform - Google Books

Front Cover
Indiana University Press, 2008 - History - 193 pages

The Russian science establishment was one of the largest in the world, boasting many Nobel prizes, a world-leading space program, and famous schools in mathematics, physics, and other fields. However, when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, the major financial supports for the scientific community were eliminated, with resulting "brain drain." The subsequent expansion of capitalism and globalization revealed that Russian science was ill adapted to compete with other countries in high technology. Science in the New Russia tells the dramatic story of the near collapse of Russian science in the mid-1990s and of subsequent domestic and international efforts to reform and reenergize scientific activity in Russia.
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Russian science odyssey

"The most important and persistent legacy of Soviet science is the seemingly dysfunctional separation between its three organizational “pyramids,” with theoretical and advanced research still dominated by the Russian Academy of Science and its research institutes (with similar academy structures in agriculture, medicine, and pedagogy); technical and applied research separated into economic or industrial branch ministries, much of which has been lost as enterprises have been privatized or experienced cuts in state funding; and a third pyramid of state universities and specialized professional institutes, which focus on undergraduate and graduate education but often with only weak research capacity. Finally, another enduring legacy was the pervasive militarization of science in the Soviet system, which bred yet more organizational barriers and lack of transparency."

"The most useful aspect of the volume for international readers will be the authors’ detailed descriptions and evaluations of the massive and historically unprecedented international assistance programs that sought first to support and then to transform post-Soviet science, higher education, and research. These programs, funded by an array of governments and multilateral organizations, amounted to several billion U.S. dollars (when related programs in energy, nuclear nonproliferation, and agricultural research are included), and offered support in the form of individual grants, international travel and long-term professional exchanges, the purchase of scientific equipment and publications, collaborative research projects, and institutional support."

"Efforts were also launched to disseminate new information technologies throughout Russian education and government and to restore state funding for scientific research, most notably through a series of massive federal grants for innovative university projects and investments in areas such as aerospace and aircraft design, biotechnology, and nanotechnology."

"A key turning point came after 2001, when the highest reaches of the political leadership seemed to recognize the necessity of a coherent science policy and adequate state or public investment for the competitiveness of the Russian economy and began ambitious efforts to better coordinate venture capital with technological innovation, as well as to link together the research capacity of Academy institutes with the educational programs of universities."

"Russian science might soon reclaim its status in the world community and thereby just possibly be able to more directly contribute to the resolution of our common scientific and technological challenges in the 21st century."

M.N.: I doubt it very much.

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