Olympiads, Postdocs, World-class Research Centres: Opportunities for Young International Researchers in Russia
The III Young Scientists Congress took place in the Sirius Science and Art Park on November 28–30, 2023. On the first day of the forum, a discussion was held on the tools and opportunities for engaging international early-career researchers in Russian science. The meeting was organised by HSE University together with members of the Association of Global Universities.
The discussion was moderated by Irina Karelina, HSE University Vice President. In her welcoming speech, she highlighted the importance of intercultural interaction in the academic environment. ‘Talent blooms if it reaches the level of mastery, and mastery develops only in an environment of amazing academic communication. And this communication not only helps you grow, but also find research partners,’ said Karelina.
Konstantin Mogilevsky, Deputy Minister of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation, says that in Russia, there are two ways to attract international researchers to science. One of them is launching international collaborations and joint research projects. The other involves supporting students in their academic development. Last year, 351,000 students from other countries enrolled at Russian universities. According to the deputy minister, it is important to improve the quality of admission, as well as to think over a grant system for students to attract talent.
Konstantin Mogilevsky also notes that Russia's tasks in attracting foreigners to domestic science differ from those in Western countries: ‘Our task is to train specialists, immerse them in Russian culture, and return them to their homeland so that they understand Russia and can be friends of our country, so that they can build careers there thanks to the good education they received here.’
Admission to Russian doctoral programmes appears to be one of the most popular career paths for international scientists. Andrey Keller, Acting Director of Sociocenter, adds that the number of international doctoral students has doubled compared to 2017. The leading countries are China, Kazakhstan, and Syria. As for the share of international students in comparison with other countries, Russia is in the top thirty alongside Israel, Lithuania, Slovakia, Poland and Mexico.
Dmitry Arsenyev, Vice-Rector for International Affairs of Peter the Great St Petersburg Polytechnic University, says that about a third of applicants were enrolled on university doctoral programmes following the results of the Open Doors Olympiad.
The International ‘Open Doors’ Olympiad of the ‘Global Universities’ Association is intended for international applicants of master's and doctoral programmes at Russian universities. The olympiad is held with the support of the Ministry of Education and Science of Russia and Rossotrudnichestvo, and a distributed project office operates at HSE University. In 2018–2020, the olympiad was included in the ‘Education’ national project, and in the ‘Science and Universities’ national project from 2021. Every year, the olympiad attracts about 80,000 applicants from 195 countries around the world.
The olympiad website features videos from laboratories, descriptions of scientific tracks, interviews with potential academic supervisors, lists of journals and other materials. ‘This allows us to reach hundreds of thousands of potential candidates,’ says Dmitry Arsenyev. Oleg Nagornov, First Vice-Rector of MEPhI, also highlighted the olympiad’s success in attracting master’s and doctoral students to the university and proposed creating a single master's and doctoral track for motivated early-career researchers.
Dmitry Livanov, Rector of the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, says that the university uses two tools to attract scientists. These are study laboratories created around the scientific agenda that the scientist works on and the post-doc recruitment programme. The average age of such scientists is 30 years, and about half of them are foreigners.
Larisa Efremova, Vice-Rector for International Affairs at RUDN University, spoke on the prospects of attracting international students and scientists via the platforms of the Association of International Students and the Alumni Association of Russian and Soviet Union Universities, as well as the Ambassadors of Russian Education and Science programme.
Marina Borovskaya, President of Southern Federal University and President of the Council of Rectors of Southern Federal District, spoke about strategic projects implemented by researchers from universities in the southern regions of Russia together with international scientists and students.
Dmitry Vishnevsky, Rector of Donbass State Technical University, noted that the university is open to international students who want to become engineers with a knowledge of Asian languages.
Danis Nurgaliyev, Vice-Rector for Earth Sciences, Director of the Institute of Geology and Petroleum Technologies at Kazan Federal University, highlighted the development of the university's branch network within the framework of international cooperation, and spoke about engaging international young scientists in the work of the world-class research centre in the field of hydrocarbon reserve development. Doctoral students from China, the Middle East and Latin America participate in the centre's research.
More than a hundred participants, including international early-career researchers, took part in the event.
A video of the meeting is available on the congress website.
On December 15, the Second Sino-Russian Economic Cooperation Workshop–Youth Forum took place online. The event was organised jointly by HSE University and the Shanghai University School of Economics. Anastasia Stepanova, Deputy Vice Rector of HSE University, Associate Professor at the School of Finance, and one of the workshop organisers, talked to the HSE News Service about cooperation with Shanghai University and the topics covered by the workshop.
Maria Krivosheina, a second-year student in HSE’s Comparative Studies: Russian Literature in Cross-cultural Perspective master’s programme, placed third in Russia’s national student research paper competition in the category of Humanities and Social Sciences. Maria’s research focused on problems with how Sherlock Holmes was perceived in Russia at the beginning of the 20th century.
Three events in one at the HSE Faculty of Management combined an academic seminar of young management researchers, the seventh annual research conference ‘Contemporary management problems: exploring the boundaries’ and the first international conference on network analysis. The speakers and audience were the same for all three.
A young scientists’ conference organized by the European Consortium for Political Research recently took place at the University of Innsbruck (Austria). Students of the HSE Institute of Education’s Master’s programme on Contemporary Political Conflicts organized a session called ‘Political Power & Foreign Policy Analysis’.
On May 12, 2014, a Youth Day took place in Seoul, South Korea as part of the Fifth Clean Energy Ministerial. Anastasia Edelkina, Research Fellow of the ISSEK Foresight Centre, represented Russia at the meeting of young scientists from 16 countries.