SPIEF 2016 Gives Food for Thought

20th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum is at its` highest! Officials from all over the world came to Russia to discuss global issues such as ecological problems, public freedoms and difficulties connected with research development in Russia and abroad.

Over the last 20 years SPIEF has become one of the largest platforms for interaction between business representatives and politicians. According to Sergei Prikhodko, Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation and chairman of the Organizing Committee, its` participants discuss the most challenging topics referring to any country and community. Mr. Prihodko noted that this year representatives of more than 100 countries came to St. Petersburg.

“Our guests are those who believe in development of world`s economy and who want to collaborate with Russia. It means that one appreciates the Forum and supposes that Russia contributes to is` economic strength,” said the expert.

Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, in his speech, drew guests` attention to importance of so-called green economy. He noted that international scientists and engineers would solve such problems as hydrocarbon toxicity.  Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, also commented on this topic. The president added that global ecological and economic challenges should be solved by world`s community as opposed to separate activists. Moreover, business and political officials cannot deal with these problems without assistance of society. That is why it is necessary to provide freedom of speech. Obviously, social activity will not be effective under the pressure of prohibitions. According to the president, often national security is used as a tool for oppressing.

Scientists are those who can solve most of world`s issues, suppose SPIEF guests. Unstable reality constantly makes new demands. New technologies created by researchers correlate with these requirements. The members of plenary session called “Great Challenges as a Driver for Scientific Development” came to the point that modern science is a global activity, which attracts specialists from all over the world.  

“Research progresses depend on financial issues, quality of education and interaction of researchers and scientific centers. Nowadays we meet such problems that cannot be solved by, physicists or mathematicians only. They should cooperate with economists, project managers and other experts. It means that international academic community should serve as the main tool for providing research cooperation,” noted Youngsuk Chi, Chairman at Elsevier, one of the largest scientific publishing houses.

Anatoly Chubais, General Manager of the State Corporation Rosnano, also spoke on this problem. According to the expert, usually entrepreneurs are not interested in scientific development because new technologies provoke new market requirements. It means that companies have to take them into account and become flexible. Investments in scientific projects will not be profitable for business unless Russian economy is innovative-oriented. He also noted that to develop new type of economy one should train new generation of entrepreneurs. It is also very important to take into account that various markets need different periods of time to develop. For example, IT projects get profit in a year. By comparison, a pharmaceutical company starts to bring profit in several decades.

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