As part of the business program of the Open Innovations Forum, RVC held a session “Involving universities in developing products and technologies demanded by the market”. The experts discussed which format of interaction with universities is most interesting for business, how to organize technology transfer from research organizations to promising markets and how to prepare leaders for the development of new technologies.
According to the participants of the session, currently, in Russia there is a need to strengthen cooperation between scientific organizations and business. The state, the scientific and entrepreneurial community are looking for new optimal interaction options for the effective introduction of scientific research into the markets.
Over the past 10 years, advances in this direction have occurred, said Oleg Movsesyan, the general director of the MSU science park. According to him, the state is now encouraging universities to engage not only in basic science but also to find partners and create popular products.
According to the expert, acceleration programs at higher educational institutions also contribute to the interaction with business and encouraging scientists to participate in commercial projects. So the accelerator of Moscow State University annually receives 500 participants — graduate students and young scientists who want to start their own business.
Nevertheless, to attract attention from the business, the university must take reciprocal steps, say the session participants. Russian universities still have to learn how to work with corporations, including international ones. Moreover, it is very important to form a base of real examples of successful implementation of developments on this path.
Corporations really “turned around” to universities, and today it is important to maintain this interest, says Mikhail Filonov, Vice-Rector for Science and Innovations, NITU “MISiS”:
An obstacle to the development of partnerships between universities and industrial companies is often the lack of a unified position at the university on the form of such cooperation, said MTS Innovation Centre Project Manager Maksim Gashkov.
According to the panellists, one of the most promising ways to involve universities in commercial scientific research is to stimulate the creation of university centres for applied research in breakthrough technologies.
In Russia, for these purposes, a network of specialized Competence Centres of the National Technology Initiative has been established on the basis of Russian universities and scientific organizations. The centres conduct research and educational activities in the field of "through-technology NTI in a consortium with the largest technology companies. In total, 14 NTI Competence Centres were selected; RVC provides support and monitoring of the centres’ activities.