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Regular version of the site

A Monitoring Survey of Highly Qualified R&D Personnel

Priority areas of development: economics
2012
The project has been carried out as part of the HSE Program of Fundamental Studies.

This project was implemented within the framework of the HSE's Basic Research Programme.

Research Object: This study is part of the large-scale comparative international project: "Careers of Doctorate Holders" (CDH). This project aims at developing internationally comparable indicators on the careers and mobility of the most qualified personnel in science and technology. It brings together researchers from 25 countries under the auspices of the three major international organizations: OECD, Eurostat, and the UNESCO Institute for Statistics. The project is aimed at collecting data on social characteristics of a group which is supposed to play a major role in advancing Russia’s economic development, namely personnel with the highest level of research qualifications employed in the science and technology sector (doctorate holders).

Research Purpose: To measure the level of graduates’ skills and to determine how the competencies they obtained matched employers’ requirements and the ‘public value’ of R&D competencies.The following aspects were addressed:
          • Personal and socio-demographic characteristics of doctorate holders;
          • Educational characteristics (diplomas; research areas; scientific degrees; LLL);
          • Employment characteristics (employment status, employment sector, labor mobility, average salary);
          • Research output (the number and types of publications, patenting activity, ownership of intellectual property, participation in the commercialization of research results).

Empirical Base of the Research: The survey is based on the results of the study of doctorate holders in science and technology sectors. The collected data allowed the main social, economic, and demographic properties of the group to be analysed. A multi-stage, stratified quota sample is representative by region, type of organization, age of the respondent, and doctorate degree. The total sample amounted to 1,884 respondents. The sampling was analysed by the following axes: 1 — doctorate degree; 2 — economic condition; 3 — age; 4 — type of organization.

Research Results: The report presents the main trends of professional and social mobility of Russian R&D personnel and factors influencing this mobility inside Russia and abroad. The study enabled some indicators of the social mobility of doctorate holders and managers in the science and technology sectors to be specified more exactly.
1. The level of secondary employment is rather high: 37% of the respondents had a supplementary job. The main sector of second employment is the university sector: 57% of all respondents having a second job and 45% of respondents having a third job work in universities.
2. The mobility of R&D personnel depends not only on economic motives but also on the quality and content of the work. Thus, 13% respondents are ready to move to another city for a "satisfactory salary", while 39% are ready to move for the oportunity to "participate in complex projects that are important for the country or the world".
3. The respondents are more inclined to move inside Russia than abroad. As for moving abroad, the most popular countries are Germany and the USA: 13% of respondents mentioned Germany and 7.4% — the USA.
4. The doctorate holders consider special scientific professional skills and competencies to be underestimated in modern Russia. On the contrary, "managerial" skills are overestimated. This distortion between the practical demand for high qualifications and the low evaluation of main professional skills indicates serious problems in the field of R&D personnel motivation.

Implementation of the Research Results: The survey's results may be used to elaborate public policies in the field of employment and the careers of highly qualified R&D personnel.

International Partners:
  •  The OECD Directorate for Science, Technology and Industry
  •  Eurostat
  •  UNESCO Institute for Statistics
  •  Research centers and universities from 26 countries participating in the CDH project
  •  Research centers and universities from 12 countries participating in the KnowINNO project