Russian universities have great potential for the development of the startups industry. Similarly, the active involvement of universities and students in this area will help the country close the gap with world technology leaders. Denis Kovalevich, the Rusnano group specialist, revealed this at the project’s acceleration stage as part of an educational intensive aimed at training teams in the field of end-to-end technology, “Archipelago 2121,” which is currently taking place in Veliky Novgorod, a Northwestern Russian city.
According to Denis Kovalevich, students and university professors now constitute a quarter of all startups in the world. The number of startups is growing. In Russia, this figure is about 3%. Further, the expert added that the active involvement of domestic universities in the field and the development of student technological entrepreneurship can give the country thousands of additional startups per year.
The potential of today’s youth will be helped by the possibilities of a single ecosystem, the creation of which is now being carried out by the Government of the Russian Federation with the direct participation of the Ministry of Education and Science of Russia. As the Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Science of the Russian Federation Elena Druzhinina said, this year the ecosystem will be supplemented by the events of the initiative “Platform of University Technological Entrepreneurship”. The goal of this initiative is to transform the university environment into a place for launching new startups. It consists of four areas: the massive involvement of students in technological entrepreneurship and their acquisition of the necessary competencies, the creation of infrastructure for testing the idea and launching start-ups, the formation of tools for student grant support,
“The current difference in the number of startups can be seen as new opportunities and huge potential that needs to be helped to unfold. Young people’s interest in innovative and technological entrepreneurship is only growing. It is especially pleasant to talk about this in the Year of Science and Technology, ”said Elena Druzhinina.
In addition, for several years, the Ministry has been attracting talented students, supporting their business ideas within the framework of the Startup as a Diploma program, which is being implemented in 52 regions of the country.
The unified ecosystem of student technology entrepreneurship will include start-up studios created on the basis of the country’s universities within the framework of the national project “Science and Universities”, as well as activities of the initiative “Platform for University Technological Entrepreneurship”.
The development of the domestic sphere of startups, according to Denis Kovalevich, will also be helped by investing in serial entrepreneurship. The expert added that it is necessary to ensure the priority of investments over grants and develop a model for insuring private investments – the investor must be able to withdraw the contribution to the startup without significant losses during the first 24 months, and the development institution must replace it during the search for new capital.