27 september 2010

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin holds a meeting with the rector of Moscow State University, Viktor Sadovnichy

The two officials discussed the university’s development programme until 2020. Vladimir Putin referred to this programme as a very substantive document based on intensifying cross- referenced research and specifies the use of cutting-edge equipment and methods in education. He also added that the government would set aside an additional 5 billion roubles for the implementation of this programme.

Transcript of the beginning of the meeting:

Vladimir Putin: Mr Sadovnichy, pursuant to the adoption of the new law on Moscow State University, your institution is obliged to provide a development strategy till 2020. We have to approve it. I have familiarised myself with the strategy. It is indeed a very substantive document and is based on intensifying cross-referenced research and specifies the use of cutting-edge equipment and methods in education. I really hope that this university, as has always been the case, will make a big contribution to the development of science.

As you know, the government is currently paying much attention to and allocating significant funds for research activity at higher education institutions in order to enhance the cooperation between university researchers, academic researchers and manufacturers. We have set aside additional funds to implement this programme. This financing is stipulated in a government resolution which I signed today. This resolution provides 5 billion roubles over the next two years, with 2.25 billion roubles to be spent this year and the remaining 2.75 billion roubles in 2011. All in all, the overall financing from non-budget sources may reach 50 billion roubles between 2014 and 2020.

Mr Sadovnichy, I really hope that, we can follow through on this.

Viktor Sadovnichy: Thank you very much. This programme has been planned pursuant to your instruction. This is a large-scale programme and envisages ten development priorities which coincide with the country's overall priorities in the advancement of science. These priorities include certain sectors in which we will assume world leadership.

The university launches satellites of its own. To mark the birthday of Mikhail Lomonosov, with your support and following your instruction, we will launch the Lomonosov satellite to study space. This is a very ambitious programme. With the help of our previous satellites we have discovered new space phenomena. This programme is unparalleled in university research around the world.

Another issue is supercomputing. We currently have the 13th most powerful supercomputer in the world and thanks to this programme we will increase its performance to one petaFLOPS by the end of this year or the beginning of 2011. I believe that it will be ranked even higher at that point. At least, our neighbouring countries do not have a supercomputer like this.

Another interesting issue is the human institute. This issue envisages the development of man in all spheres, including medicine, psychology, the impact of the environment and other areas. This institute has already been set up at our university. And again, we have not heard of such institutes at other universities.

There are other items. We will begin issuing our own authorised diplomas - we will be the first in Russia to launch our own diplomas using our own standards. We also plan to introduce a six-year term of education for certain specialities.

Naturally, the refrain of this programme is that Moscow State University will be doing all this for Russia, including retraining and education. We will do our best to make the university, and thank you for saying this, the leading university in Russia, as it always has, setting education standards for the entire country.

Vladimir Putin: I would like to wish you success in seeing all these plans to fruition.