HSE Gears up for Staff and Student Conference: A Look Back at the Faculty of Computer Science
On March 20, a conference for HSE staff and students will take place at HSE. It will consider the university’s development programme and elect the new Academic Council. The previous conference took place five years ago, in 2014, and the university has changed a lot since then. HSE News Service talked with some of the university leaders about how their own work at the University has changed over this period.
What’s the main difference between the Faculty of Computer Science of 2014 and now?
The faculty has grown both qualitatively and quantitatively. In 2014, there were two bachelor’s programmes, and now there are three — we launched the HSE and University of London Parallel Degree Programme in International Relations, which is taught in English.
In 2014, our faculty had 321 enrolled first-year bachelor’s students, and in 2018 we had 508. We used to have two master's programmes, and now there are six. In 2014, we had 72 enrolled first-year master’s students, and in 2018 there were 223. Applicants to both the bachelor’s and master’s programmes are becoming stronger every year. There were three joint departments, and now there are five of them — we’ve opened a Joint Department with the RAS Institute for System Programming and a Joint Department with SAS. There were two laboratories, and now there are nine. Moreover, a number of research metrics show significant qualitative growth in our research and teaching.
What has been the main achievement over this time?
We have a lot of achievements; it’s difficult to choose the one. I would say the eight grants from the Russian Science Foundation, the opening of the Samsung Laboratory, our joining the CERN collaboration, our Faculty’s noticeable improvement in the rankings, the enrolment of the first cohort in the 'Applied Mathematics and Information Science' programme, the ABET accreditation of our ‘Software Engineering’ programme, the successful start of the programme 'HSE and University of London Double Degree Programme in Data Science and Business Analytics’, the enrolment of 39 winners of the final round of the All-Russia Olympiad for School Students in our bachelor’ programmes in 2018, our new joint projects with Yandex, the development of bioinformatics, our Data Culture project, the development of continuing education programmes, the IDAO Olympiad, our joint master’s programmes with Sberbank and Skoltech, our courses and specializations on Coursera, electives, open computer science days, computer schools in Lipetsk, work with "Sirius" Centre, and many more.
What do you want to work on or improve next?
I wish more students considered careers in academia as the main career path. There has been a positive trend over the last two years. I’m worried about the lack of defense projects of doctoral students. We have problems with patents and registration of intellectual activity results. We have applied for the megagrant competition (220th Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation) several times, but we haven’t succeeded yet. However, I look forward to our success.
What would you say to yourself and your colleagues if you were to go back to 2014?
I would repeat that I’m sure of our success.
What is HSE’s main goal for the next five years?
We need to strengthen the Faculty’s position as a leader in attracting renowned researchers, innovative teachers and the strongest applicants, as well as our position as an established specialist platform at the intersection of academic science, applied research and industry.
As for the main tasks of the Faculty for the next 5 years, I would also include further work on creating the Faculty core and improving the quality of teaching; graduate school development; cooperation with the world's leading research centres and the internationalization of educational programmes; the formation of the faculty Board of Trustees; the systematization of our work with companies and participation in major technological projects; the development of the faculty as a driver of inter-faculty and transdisciplinary interaction; and active work with graduates.
The conference agenda has been approved by the Academic Council and includes the following items:
- Review of the report on the ‘HSE Development Programme for 2009–2015 and up to 2020’ and discussion of its progress since 2014;
- Discussion of the key points in the HSE University Development Programme up to 2030;
- Election of the HSE Academic Council;
- Election of a representative body representing the interests of HSE staff.
When and where will it take place?
The conference will take place on March 20, 2019, at 1pm, in the HSE building on 57 Trifonovskaya Ulitsa, Moscow (Conference Hall).
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On April 26, the HSE Academic Council approved a charter for the creation of a Board of Trustees at the Faculty of Computer Science. Board members include senior executives from Yandex, JetBrains, SAS, 1C, and Sberbank. The endowment will be used by the faculty to fund long-term projects.
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