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New Values in the Innovation Policy 'Toolbox'

On January 24, 2018, the Higher School of Economics jointly with RVC JSC held an expert discussion on indicators and instruments of the government’s policy of innovative development, designed for the National Report on Innovation in Russia — 2017.

The Russian Venture Company (RVC), in collaboration with relevant ministries and leading analytical centres, prepares the annual National Report on Innovation in Russia since 2015. As a part of the preparation, the authors evaluate the current state of the innovative environment, carry out an audit of applied innovation policy instruments, offer recommendations on their 'delicate adjustment' and additional optimizations.

In 2017, the staff of the Higher School of Economics joined the preparation of the third report on the development of the 'indicators panel' to measure innovation and the 'toolbox' of innovation policy. HSE specialists offered a number of novations to strengthen the research methodology and expand the range of indicators for evaluating innovation.

Leonid Gokhberg, HSE First Vice Rector and ISSEK Director, commented on key moments of the collaboration: 'We wanted to ensure continuity of the research, while strengthening the focus on international principles and standards of assessments of innovative systems. Special attention was paid to justifying the indicators, their harmonization — we tried to maximize their evidentiary value, make the “toolbox” transparent and verifiable. Priority was given to objectified quantitative indicators, and where it possible, we tried to abandon a number of non-transparent and subjective assessments. In addition, a new section 'Human Capital' was introduced. Block 'Values' was significantly changed — we used data from the World Values Survey. The sample size was expanded; now it includes not only 15 leading innovation economies (as it was earlier), but 45 states, including a number of OECD, BRICS countries, Central and Eastern Europe.'

Evgeny Kutsenko, Head of the Russian Cluster Observatory and of the Cluster Policy Unit of the HSE ISSEK, elaborated the results of the comparative analysis and the dynamics of the development of Russia's innovation system.

During the ensuing discussion, moderated by Konstantin Fursov, Head of the HSE ISSEK Unit for Analysis of R&D Performance, the experts discussed factors that had the greatest impact on the state of the innovation system in Russia and the dynamics of its changes in the last few years, as well as its strengths and weaknesses. Much attention was paid, in particular, to the conditions of commercialization, which remain one of the weaknesses of the Russian innovation system.

Mikhail Gershman, Head of the Centre for Innovation Policy Studies of the HSE ISSEK, spoke about the impact of support measures on the key aspects of the national innovation system taken by the government and development institutions. An integrated 'toolbox' was proposed for their systematization. His speech was followed by the second part of the discussion. It addressed the issues of prioritizing innovation policy measures and their synchronization.

Director of the Programs and Projects at the RVC Centre for Strategic Planning and Development, Svetlana Serebryakova noted the value of the 'National Report on Innovation in Russia' speaking about who and how will use the 'toolbox' and instruments which were prepared for the documents. According to her, it sets the framework for communication between expert community and government — current and next — and is called upon to form a common understanding of the achieved results of innovation policy. She stressed that the presentation of peer review and initiatives in the format of the national report is a common practice around the world, and the russian 'National Report' in this sense is placed in global context. 'It would be interesting to see how the themes and focuses on the international agenda correlate with what is discussed in the national reports of other countries,' said Svetlana Serebryakova.

Igor AgamirzianAnna Belova, Natalia Smorodinskaya, Yuri Simachev, Andrei Mavrenkov, Oleg Movsesyan and other experts took part in the discussion.

Based on its own developments and international practice, HSE ISSEK publishes a series of annual data books 'Indicators of Innovation in the Russian Federation''Science and Technology Indicators in the Russian Federation', etc., the report 'Russian Regional Innovation Ranking'. Also, HSE ISSEK experts participated in 20162014 and 2012 preparations of the annual reports that accompanied the release of the Global Innovation Index.

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