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Russian Technology Updates - Oct., 2012
No understanding of Russia is complete without an understanding of its rural villages. Now many of these villages have become an endangered species.Prior to the 1917 Russian Revolution when the Czarist government was toppled, Russia was a leading grain exporter. Stupid Stalin policy (the famine) and later the lack of investment destroyed Russia's agricultural production. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - Sept., 2012
So how safe is it to fly in Russia? It depends on who you ask. More importantly, it depends on who you fly. Russian civil aviation's reputation for safety took a hit in the post-Soviet period. Rightfully so. For several years Russia has had the
worst or near worst safety record. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - August, 2012
Russia is a land of many challenges. Many multi-nationals doing business in Russia have achieved great success. Once there, Tussia quickly becomes a leading growth area for these multi-nationals. But, once fluch with success these copmanies are faced with yet another layer of difficulties - finding the right people. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - July, 2012
We have frequently reported on corruption in Russia. So far there has been a lot of talk to fix the problem. There has been limited action and results. The problem is systemic and probably cultural, too. It dates to the Czars. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - June, 2012
Prior to the 1917 Russian Revolution when the Czarist government was toppled, Russia was a leading grain exporter.  Stupid Stalin policy (the famine) and later the lack of investment destroyed Russia's agricultural production. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - May, 2012
A campaign promise made by President Elect Putin was to improve Russia's demographics and to improve public health. One tool i that effort is to reduce smoking. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - April, 2012
At the start of 2012, 55% of Russians used the internet. And, 36% of Russians used the internet daily. Based on a February surver, 82% of Russian internet users are registered on at least one social networking site.  Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - March, 2012
Spiritual Health - In February, the Russian Orthodox Church opened a hot line to help fight superstition and promote the practice of confession instead. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - February, 2012
The average bribe in Russia surged 3.5 times in  2011 in comparison to 2010. Many see the government's anti-corruption efforts as half-hearted at best. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - January, 2012
Last month, in advance of Russia's Parliamentary elections I commented on likely shifts in voter sentiment. The shifts were significant. When the electorate felt there was wide spread voter fraud protests erupted. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - December, 2011
Russia votes next week for its Parliament and in March for its President. historically,Russia's elections have not been much of an election as known in the EU and US. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - November, 2011
The anti-smoking drive has finally reached Russia. The Ministry of health and Social Development has proposed a fairly tough bill that (1) bans smoking in public places (2) raises tobacco prices and (3) changes the way smokers will purchase cigarettes.  Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - October, 2011
Beer - russia's President Dmitry Medvedev recently signed legislation that defines beer as an alcoholic beverage. This is a first in Russia. The law limits where and when beer can be sold.  Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - September, 2011
Russia marked the Day of Married Love and Family Happiness last month amid a deepening demographic crisis and a record divorce rate. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - August, 2011
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin had some tough words for lazy bureaucrats: cut the red tape or be fined. The fine is approximately one month's salary. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - July, 2011
The following is an edited and abridged story written by Galina Masterova. According to the Russian constitution, Russian citizens are entitled to free health care. The 1993 constitution guarantees universal health care. Yet, when Yevgenivy Ivanovna's mother went into the hospital her daughter, Zoya, knew that she should pay the nurse an unofficial fee in cash. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - June, 2011
Following the trends in Russia:
Internet users - Internet users in Russia rose 22% in 2010 to 57 million, the Russian Association of Electronic Communications (RAEC) Director Sergei Plugotarenko said Wednesday, ITAR-TASS reported. Internet users in Russia are expected to increase to 80 million by 2014, Plugotarenko said citing data from the Public Opinion Fund. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - May, 2011
The following are taken from recently published polls and statistical reports published in Russia.  Did you know that almost half of Russian (45%) have a poor assessment of living conditions in their cities. The most worrying issues for Russian are poor road conditions (71%) and poor street lighting (54%). Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - April, 2011
From one extreme to the other: 1.The Russian Orthodox church-from banishment to leadership. Endorsed by Kremlin leaders as Russia's main faith, the Russian Orthodox church has grown increasingly powerful since communism fell 20 years ago. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - March, 2011
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev tried to woo world economic leaders in Davos by boasting of significant improvements in economic conditions under his watch. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - February, 2011
According to the Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM), most russians on a daily basis, see their rights abused and freedoms encroached on. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - January, 2011
Trends we have come upon in recent readings:
Consumers - In 1990, Russian households spent 41% of their income on food; last year that share was 35%. Relative to developed countries, however, Russian households still spend a sizable chunk of their income on food.  Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - December, 2010
On November 30, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev delivered his third state of the nation address to both houses of parliamint...Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - November, 2010
Most well educated and wealthy Russian would like to emigrate, a poll conducted by SuperJob.ru, an online research center reported. Seventy-three percent of respondents said that, given the opportunity, they would prefer to live in a foreign country. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - October, 2010
Russia's worst ever summer heat and drought has triggered some innovative thinking. Water could become a "strategic resource". With proper water management, Russia's vast water resources may soon become a "strategic resource" as the global water deficit increases. This is a new position being taken by Russia's Security Council. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - September, 2010
This summer Russia has suffered from extreme high temperatures, drought, forest fires, and resultant smog.  Drownings, (people drinking and then swimming), respiratory disease causing death, people walking the streets wearing face masks, and fire deaths are all at record levels. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - August, 2010
The Russian labor market is suffering, with the jobless total, if hidden unemployment is taken into account, at nearly 20 percent of the economically active population. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - July, 2010
The Service Industry. The Russian newspaper Gazeta reports shop
assistants are not known for their smiles. According to a survey of 14
countries' service industries, Russia ranked 12th. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - June, 2010
The Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia's Orthodox Church, Kirill, said he is skeptical about the idea of political pluralism. "Political pluralism is not our idea, it is not a church idea," Partriarch Kirill said at a meeting with professors and students of Yerevan State University. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - May, 2010
Russia saw its economy shrink by 7.9% in 2009.  Depending on the source, 2010 GDP growth ranges from -3% to +3.7% with the government predicting 3.1% growth.  All agree growth is expected in 2011. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - April, 2010
Another topic we have written about is Russia's public health system.  The following is an update. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - March, 2010
We have written in the past about corruption in Russia. It appears that Russia Federal Government is taking action to address the problem. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - February, 2010
Russia's economy has been hit hard in the world wide recession.  Even with a strong third quarter and a spectacular fourth quarter the decrease in GDP is  expected to be 8.9%. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - January, 2010

When asked to describe Russia, I frequently respond by saying there are three Russias: Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - December, 2009
Some facts about the Internet in Russia: #1 - The Public Opinion Foundation (POF) reported that only one fourth of Russians use the Internet from home. The majority of Internet users reside in Russia's two largest cities: Moscow and St. Petersburg. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - November, 2009
We have written several times about corruption in Russia.  It's getting worse not better.  It's becoming more creative.  How's this for greed?  The nineteenth-century Russian novelist Nikolai Gogol said his country has two problems: roads and fools.  Read more...    

Russian Technology Updates - October, 2009
A new study by an international public health research team published in the British medical journal The Lancet documents the impact of alcohol abuse on Russia. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - September, 2009
More on the Russian demographics. According to the most recent UN National Human Development Report on Russia, males born in Russia in 2006 can only expcet to live to 60 years; women born that same year can expect to live to 73 years. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - August, 2009
It is really not news - but now it's official.  A new study by an international public health research team published in the British medical journal The Lancet documents the impact of alcohol abuse on Russia. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - July, 2009
Russia, the world's largest country in terms of land mass, is divided into 7 federal districts. For regional governing, these 7 federal districts are broken into 47 oblasts, 22 republics, and 9 krais.  Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - June, 2009
The Kremlin is positioning itself to exert more control over major Russian based Internet companies. Yandex (Russia's largest) is in discussions with the Kremlin to give the state veto power over changes in its ownership. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - May, 2009
Doing business in Russia might appear to be similar to elsewhere, but it is really unlike anywhere else in the world. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - April, 2009
The number of Russians who have traveled outside the Former Soviet Union is negligible.  Because people have little first-hand knowledge of other cultures and ways of life, Russia is often ignorant and frequently stagnant. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - March 2009
Health and consumer rights activitists are up in arms over the contents of legislation regulating the tobacco industry, saying it contradicts a UN convention that Russia signed in April. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - February 2009
Corruption is deeply ingrained in Russia's society.  It was present during the time of the czars, continued during communism, and is a stifling proglem today. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - January 2009
For centuries, the Russian Orthodox Church and the Russian State have had a close relationship. It's the Byzantine tradition! Like much in the Russian society, relationships with the State change. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - December 2008
As Prime Minister and President of Russia, one of the greatest achievements of the Putin administrations is the creation of the middle class. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - November, 2008

Russia is in denial.  It's government is saying that the world wide financial crises is under control while its currency and stock market are in free fall.  Consumers are even worse. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - October, 2008
Russia is facing a severe labor shortage.  The shortage is present at all levels - from laborers to senior managers, including executives. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - September, 2008

Russia's public health care is a disaster. What was a source of great pride and a showpiece under the Soviet communism is the recipient of public ridicule and criticism. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - August, 2008
Russia has long had a problem with corruption.  Immediately on taking office, Dmitry Medvedev declared that he will change what has been pervasive in Russia for centuries and he has promised legislative steps to do so. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - July, 2008
More on the Russian economy. In 2008, Russia's economy is an unbridled success.  Only a overheating by inflation or a catastrophic fall in oil prices will dampen, not interrupt, this Russian success.  Former President Putin announced his economic goal in 2000 - grow the economy so it doubles by 2020. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - June, 2008
In early May, Dmitry Medvedev was sworn in as Russia’s new
President. His first act was appointing former President Putin as
Prime Minister. Not much has changed. Not in government policy
and not in business practices. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - May, 2008
There is a trend developing in Russia: after much skepticism by companies in the world's developed economies the R in BRIC is being recognized for its science and technology.  Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - April, 2008
The Russian Election season is over.  No surprises. The Duma (Parliament) elected in December and the new President Medvedev elected in March won scripted elections by scripted majorities. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - March, 2008
During the years of the Cold War, the Former Soviet Union (FSU) outspent the United States in scientific research 2:1. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - February, 2008
The US (in November) and Russia (in March) will elect their next president. Predicting who may be the next US president is wide open for speculation, predicting who will be the next Russian President can be stated with great certainty - Dimitry Medvedev. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - January, 2008
We begin 2008 with exuberance and confidence that Russian science and technology will find greater and wider success in markets in Europe and the United States. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - December, 2007

This month we focus on Russia's health sciences. Russia has a different and less stringent registration process for new vaccines, drugs, diagnostics, and devices than the EU and the US. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - November, 2007
This month we report on a wide breadth of Russia's high tech technologies. Russia has adopted a technology policy to develop those technologies that will enable it to compete in seven world markets. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - October, 2007
This month we go back to the basics and Russia's strengths. We focus in this newsletter on several materials technologies and a sprinkle of physics technologies. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - September, 2007
We are often asked ' what technology does Russia have that would be of interest to world markets. Said another way ' is Russia active in cutting edge technology. The answer is yes and here are four examples ' materials science, nanotechnology, biotech for the homeland security, pharmaceutical, and metals industries.Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - August, 2007
In August, our focus is on two of Russia's traditional technology strengths ' physics applied to devices and physics applied to materials. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - July, 2007
This month, we hope to explain away a myth - Many believe that all of Russia's science and technology developments are taking place in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - June, 2007
In Russia, in the past month, there have been multiple announcements from both the government and private industry of billions of dollars being invested in science. The investments range from direct grants to VC supported research. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - May, 2007
Though the prevailing view is that Russia lags in health sciences developments, there are instances where Russia has better, less expensive, faster technology than what we have developed in the US and Europe. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - April, 2007
This month's update on Russian technology focuses on developments reported in local Russian newspapers in energy and materials sciences. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - March, 2007
Our March update on Russian technology focuses on developments in materials sciences. The developments reported on are new examples of Russia's continued leadership in developing, working with, and commercially applying new materials. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - February, 2007
Again this month we have drafted our update on Russian technology from developments published in Russian newspapers. The first topic is an update on Tunguska. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - January, 2007
In January, our update on Russian technology shares with you three newspaper reports. Russia, long a laggard in microelectronics and those fields closely related, has made it a national policy to catch up and lead. Read more...

Russian Technology Updates - December, 2006
As mentioned last month, we plan to share with you published reports and papers touting Russian science. What is discussed has narrow commercial application. But, it has very broad social implication. Read more...


September/October 2005 Russia ' A Buyer's Market for Technology
By Neil B. Godick
The Independent Review

Prior to the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990, the Soviet Government maintained a vast scientific research and development infrastructure, much of which was supported by the Soviet national security apparatus. The closed nature of the Soviet society, combined with the national security dimension of much Former Soviet Union (FSU) scientific work, led to a high degree of secrecy and isolation among Soviet scientists on the one hand, and between Soviet scientists and their Western counterparts on the other hand. This secrecy and isolation, in turn, resulted in unique approaches to discovery, invention, design, and systems engineering. Read more...



04/12/2005 Where Has the Good IT Gone?
By Sveta Skibinsky
The St. Petersburg Times

Imagine it - an investment fund in Russia that is ready and willing to invest $1.5 million into the country's high-tech companies, but it simply cannot find a suitable recipient! Is this a prince charming of funds or a super-selective sugardaddy? Most investment funds operating in Russia say that they are looking to invest in innovative IT companies with potential to grow into a global business. The expectations are pretty high, but since there are over 40 such funds working in Russia at the moment, something in the domestic IT sector must be catching their eye. Read more...

03/22/2005 Western Investors to Pay for Russian Brainpower
By Ksenia Ranchina
Delovoy Peterburg (Business St. Petersburg)

St. Petersburg. PHLburg Technologies, Mirantis and Landbridge Capital (USA) are setting up a venture foundation with an initial capital of $1.5 mln. in St. Petersburg. The venture foundation announced by PHLburg Technologies plans to provide enough capital to enable two or three start-up companies to grow from scratch to the level of a medium-sized business capable of attracting direct investments. Read more...

03/10/2005 PHLburg Technologies, Mirantis and Landbridge Capital Set Up a Venture Foundation
Saint-Petersburg.ru

The new venture foundation, a joint project of PHLburg Technologies, Mirantis and Landbridge Capital, will promote filling up the lacunas on the Russian venture capital market. It is no secret that in today's Russia it is hard to find an investor for a technology project at an early stage of its development. To date almost all the hi-tech venture capital has been invested in a limited number of companies, which had achieved a certain degree of success with their technologies at a fairly advanced stage (e.g. Cybico, RBC, IBS, Ru-Net Holdings and some others). Read more...

02/18/2005 Taking Stock of Russian Science
By Darya Petrova
Nevskoye Vremya

The quality and potential of Russian science, even now with fewer and fewer scientists around, remain very high. However, in a market economy, quality is not enough - science must also be efficient. The urgency of this problem was again confirmed in a speech by the RF President at a joint session of the Security Council, RF State Council Presidium and Council for Science and High Technologies. In particular, the President said: "While we have 10% of all the scientists of the world, we produce as little as 1% of the science-intensive products on the world market." Read more...

02/17/2005 US Venture Foundations Promise Support for Russian Hi-Tech Businesses
By Nikolai Krupenik
ITAR-TASS - St. Petersburg Regional Center, Northwest Federal District

The 2nd US-Russian technology symposium with the participation of RF Government and business and science circles of Russia and the USA opened today at Stanford University (USA). Our correspondent was informed of the fact at the St. Petersburg representation of PHLburg Technologies, a well-known US company specializing in commercialization of Russian technologies and acting as a sponsor of the symposium. Read more...

02/17/2005 US Annual Russo-American Technology Symposium to Discuss Joint Venture Foundation Model
Novosti Dnya (News of the Day) - RBC St. Petersburg

Today, 17th February the 2nd US-Russian technology symposium will open in the USA. As was reported to RBC by Project Manager Anton Konkin, the event will take place at Stanford University (USA) with the participation of leading representatives of the Russian and US government, business and science circles. PHLburg Technologies specializing in commercialization of Russian technologies is a sponsor of the symposium. Company President Neil B. Godick will make a presentation of a joint investment project by PHLburg Technologies, Mirantis and Landbridge Capital. The experts of these three companies are developing a fundamentally new model of venture investment for Russia. Read more...

02/16/2005 Is Russia Ready for Commercialization of Science?
St. Petersburg Chas Pik (St. Petersburg Rush Hour)

Russia is currently in a period of transition from a science guided exclusively by its own needs and priorities to one whose development is dictated by the country's needs. According to (Ms.) V.N. Yevdokimova, a Rospatent specialist, today the world market share of Russia's science-intensive products is 0.5%, while that of USA is 36%, Japan - 30%, China - 6%. Up to now Russia has been following the path of development based on raw materials. However, it is an effective interaction between the science sector and entrepreneurs that will determine the rate of transition to an innovations economy. Read more...