Ceremony awarding the President’s Prize in Science and Innovation for Young Scientists for 2013 2014-02-11 17:50:00 The Kremlin, Moscow Vladimir Putin awarded the 2013 President’s Prize in Science and Innovation for Young Scientists. The award ceremony took place at the Grand Kremlin Palace’s Catherine Hall. The prize, established in 2008, is awarded for contributions to developing Russian science and innovative work and aims to encourage the laureates’ continued research. The 2013 President’s Prize in Science and Innovation for Young Scientists and the honorary title of Laureate of the President’s Prize in Science and Innovation for Young Scientists is awarded to: Natalia Baurova for the development of progressive technology for metal construction diagnostics through the use of intellectual materials; Andrei Gorobets and Alexander Davydov for their series of studies to create algorithms and software for high-performing calculations on modern and emerging supercomputers; Vladimir Novikov for achievements in protecting special information and calculation complexes and systems; Alexei Polilov for the results of research on the structure and limitations of miniaturising the smallest multicellular live organisms. * * * Address at the ceremony for presenting the President’s Prize in Science and Innovation for Young Scientists President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, friends, Today is the sixth time young scientists will be awarded the President’s Prize for their achievements in science and innovation. Traditionally, this ceremony is timed to coincide with the Russian Science Day that we celebrate on February 8. As you may have guessed, we had to change the date due to the events connected with the opening of the Olympic Games. However, this makes the event no less interesting and significant. I would like to begin by congratulating all our scientists present here, for whom research has become their lifework, on their professional holiday that, as I have said, has just passed. Our scientists have made great discoveries in all areas of science, and we are proud that new names are appearing; new generations of researchers with unique potential are taking the scene, ready to promote national and international science, our society and our country. Scientific thought is developing rapidly. New technologies are changing the economy, our life style, and balance of power on the world map. Today Russia needs advance scientific and technical development that would make the country competitive and would help implement our most complicated and pressing social tasks. We will definitely continue to educate new leaders in scientific research, to create conditions for strong research teams and the most talented and – importantly – young scientists to have the best working conditions, so that doing research in Russia becomes interesting and prestigious. I would like to reiterate that all the reforms currently underway in national scientific research are aimed at achieving these very goals. We have set up the Federal Agency for Scientific Organisations. Its goal is not only to preserve, but also to develop the resource base of research institutes, to use these resources efficiently and to focus them on key priority areas. Incidentally, as far as I know, the current funding has been made fully available to research institutions this year. We are introducing modern mechanisms of funding scientific research. Thus, we are shifting to a model predominantly based on grants. There are new organisations that are designed to support fundamental research and breakthrough technologies. Among them are the Russian Science Foundation and Advanced Research Foundation. By the way, the Russian Science Foundation’s budget for 2014–2016 is over 47 billion rubles [almost $1.4 billion]. An equally impressive amount will be directed to the Advance Research Foundation over the course of 2014, 2015 and 2016. This will be 3.8 billion, 3.3 billion and 3.5 billion, respectively. I should mention here that the Russian Science Foundation has already launched its first contest for 700 grants to be awarded to research teams. Every grant consists of three annual payments of 5 million rubles each. In case of significant achievements, the grant can be extended for another two years. Already this year contests will be held for research laboratories and research institutions. The size of annual payments depends on the tasks and may reach 150 million rubles. I would like to draw your attention to the fact that a significant amount of the funding is denominated as ‘special purpose’, which means it can only be spent to pay salaries to young scientists: postgraduate students, candidates and doctors of sciences. A mandatory requirement is their participation in projects. The interval between a scientific discovery and its practical implementation is very short nowadays. A present-day scientist actually combines the qualities of a researcher and a founder of a high-tech start-up company. We will continue to further improve the mechanisms of the scientific developments’ practical implementation based on technological platforms. We will carry on the development of innovative entrepreneurship at universities, of cooperation between educational institutions and industrial facilities. Intellectual property should become the source of economic growth and higher labour productivity in this country. Our most important goal is to provide for Russia’s active participation in shaping the international research agenda, and not only for the medium, but also for the long term. To achieve this we need to focus on new areas that are traditionally linked to a new technological practice, where we can expect breakthroughs and where possibilities for new markets are concentrated. This includes bio- and genetic engineering, robotics, technologies for building and arranging space for people to live. It is important to form powerful research teams in these new prospective areas, to consolidate interdisciplinary ties and strengthen integration of science and education; we need to promote the responsibility and independence of research teams, to attract young talented researchers to the laboratories. I am convinced that we can entrust the younger generation with complicated, very complicated projects. We should more actively promote young people to key positions in scientific research, and to achieve such a rotation of human resources, we intend to set an age cap for applicants to positions of heads of research facilities. However, to maintain continuity and to make use of the expertise and knowledge of distinguished scientists and researchers, we suggest introducing the position of scientific supervisor within research teams, the way many institutions have been doing for quite some time. We will definitely continue working to resolve the social issues facing young scientists: firstly, this has to do with housing. In other words, we intend to invest into the intellectual potential of Russia, to protect and educate the nation’s human assets. It is undoubtedly very important to be in demand in your own country, to feel proud when your ideas and discoveries are used in the national economy, for the benefit of the citizens of the Russian Federation. Dear friends, Despite their young age, our winners are accomplished scientists, while their research is a significant contribution to the development of science. Natalia Baurova has developed a technology for metal construction diagnostics through the use of intellectual materials. The practical implementation of this technology will make it possible to significantly reduce production loss and provide advance warning of emergencies. Alexei Polilov, an associate professor at the Department of Entomology, Biological Faculty of Lomonosov Moscow State University, is an acknowledged world leader in the study of fundamental problems of evolutional biology. His findings can be used in micro robotics, nano-optics and in neural networks modelling. Andrei Gorobets and Alexander Davydov, who are senior researchers at the Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics at the Russian Academy of Sciences, managed to solve one of the most important problems of today: they created algorithms and software for high-performing calculations on modern and emerging supercomputers Vladimir Novikov proposed an original solution to protecting special information and calculation complexes and systems. This is extremely important for the information security of the entire country. Dear friends, I would like to once again congratulate our winners, their teachers and mentors. I wish you all the best, good health and every success. Thank you for your attention. <…> Dear friends, dear laureates, I would like to congratulate you all. I am very happy to see here representatives of both civil and military research, both fundamental and applied sciences. The most important thing is that all this research is conducted by young people, by very promising and already accomplished scientists. My congratulations to you once again, and to all your near and dear ones and your mentors, as I said earlier. All the best. Thank you for your efforts.