The Politics of Innovation

politics of innovationAuthor asks why some countries are better than others at science and technology.

The subtitle of Mark Zachary Taylor’s new book, The Politics of Innovation (Oxford University Press), asks why some countries are better than others at science and technology. He argues that the answer lies in politics and proposes a theory of “creative insecurity,” arguing that innovation rates should be higher in countries in which external threats outweigh domestic tensions.

“S&T progress creates winners and losers, and the losers resort to politics to slow innovation,” Taylor, an associate professor of political science at Georgia Institute of Technology, writes in the book’s introduction. “However, external threats increase political support for S&T and thereby counteract domestic political resistance to innovation.”

Taylor answered questions by Elizabeth Redden about his book via email.

The Large Hadron Collider Physics (LHCP 2015) Conference

Svetlana Muratova
Head of Strategic Development Department, INNO-MIR


On Saturday 5 September 2015 the international large Hadron collider Physics (LHCP) conference has concluded in Saint Petersburg. The meeting was dedicated to the work of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and other subdivisions of the European Organization for Nuclear Research, CERN. More than three hundred specialists from thirty five different countries met in Saint Petersburg to discuss the latest theoretical and experimental results gained from the LHC.

The main focus of the LHCP 2015 conference, which was the third meeting of established scientists who specialized in the high-energy physics research, was the inspection of the perspectives of further investigations which became possible thanks to the results gained from the newly upgraded LHC. Aside from the main theme, the conference was also touching upon fundamental problems such as the formation of the universe, the nature of dark matter, the discovery of unknown particles and the application of newly acquired theoretical knowledge in medicine.
The conduction of the event on this cutting edge topic in Saint Petersburg shows, without a doubt, the key role that Russian scientists, engineers, and programmers play in the process of world science.
“The input of Russian scientists in the international project of the Large Hadron Collider in both the past and present is very large, the ideas and innovations which the Russians have brought as well as the fact that their scientific instruments do not possess any analogues,” pointed out the Director for Research and Scientific Computing at CERN Sergio Bertolucci.
Our company, “INNO-MIR”, which had the honor of being the coordinator for the LHCP 2015 project, also had the chance to “touch upon” the nuclear physics and received the recognition from the head council of CERN for the high level of organization and conduction of the meeting.
The fruitful work that the scientists have done during the conference in Saint Petersburg has once again confirmed that the achievements of nuclear physics already go beyond pure theory and find practical applications in medicine and other industries. The fundamental discoveries become the basis for all the new directions of interdisciplinary investigations which push the boundaries of knowledge and determine the perspectives of the development of humanity.

Innovations in Brazil

Brazil impresses with its pace of economic development. Every year more and more foreign investment are coming into the country creating the term "Brazilian miracle". Brazilians say that today's "miracle" - is the result of long-term strategy implemented by the government over the last twenty years.
The first step of Brazilian strategy development was to invest in human capital, education and science. The Government's position was the following: the more investment will be invested in universities with proper management of funds, the higher the academic position of Brazil in the world of science. As a result, today Brazil education system is among the ten most strong in the world.
The development of the Brazilian economy was originally close to the South Korea model - creating innovations by large companies. In recent years, innovative model applies to small businesses. In addition, much attention is paid to development of the regions and attempts to unload Sao Paulo, where about 40% of the GDP of the whole country are generated. The next priority for the Brazilian companies was the strengthening of partnerships and access to the neighboring countries’ markets.
Over the past decade science in Brazil has achieved significant success in the international arena. Science and Technology of Brazil in charge of the Ministry of Science and Technology, which includes the CNPq (National Research Council) and FINEP (National Agency for the funding of education and research). The Ministry also provides direct control of the National Institute for Space Research (Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais - INPE), the National Institute for Amazonian Research (Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazonia - INPA) and the National Institute of Technology (Instituto Nacional de Tecnologia - INT). The Ministry also supervises management department in the field of computers and automated equipment - Secretaria de Política de Informática e Automação. The Ministry was established in March 1985.
Today’s Innovative culture in Brazil 
In recent years, the country has witnessed a rapid growth of start-ups and entrepreneurs have chosen a unique strategy of right-product creation. All the world's most popular services, such as Amazon, Groupon etc. are presented In Brazil. But they are created by the Brazilian startups and adapted for the local market.
Brazil is actively developing incubators, most of whom work as accelerators. Programs vary in concepts and methods of organization.
Along with startups there are big companies that are trying to be innovative and learn from international experience, such as cosmetics company Natura - the market leader in Latin America. 300 of the 500 company’s employees work in R & D department. The company was one of the first to apply the concept of open innovation. Natura has created a special portal for discussion of potential projects that could establish cooperation with international universities. As a result, in 2012 the company cooperated with an innovative educational laboratory in Boston.
Basic science in Brazil
Brazil today has a well-developed organization of science and technology. Basic research is mainly carried out in public universities and research centers and institutes and sometimes - in private educational institutions, especially in the non-profit non-government organizations. In the 1990s it increased the number of private universities and companies. However, more than 90% of funding for basic research comes from government sources.
Applied research is also largely carried out in universities and research centers in the system (but not in private companies), which contradicts the experience of more developed countries such as the United States, South Korea, Germany, Japan, etc. The main reasons are:
• small private company in Brazil, which would be competitive enough or rich enough to conduct their own research;
• in particular the high technology sector in Brazil is dominated by large international companies, which, however, do not have their own research centers here.
Now however there is a reverse trend. Companies such as Motorola, Samsung, Nokia opened its own research centers in Brazil, following IBM, which created the IBM Research Center in Brazil in the 1970s. One of the incentives was the so-called "law on information technology," which is exempt from certain taxes high-tech companies in the field of telecommunications, computers, digital electronics, etc. The law draws each year more than 1.5 billion dollars of investment in the Brazilian private sector research. Some of the products and technologies developed and created by Brazilians are highly competitive in other countries: cars, airplanes, software, fiber optics, electrical appliances and so on. 
Funding for research, development and innovation in Brazil comes from six main sources:
• Government (federal, state and municipal) sources
• Indirect funding through the budgets of public and private universities, institutes and centers.
• Public companies, such as Embrapa (Brazilian Enterprise for Agricultural Research).
• Industrial, commercial, private companies and service industries, is opening its research centers because of tax breaks from the government
• Domestic private and non-profit organizations or donations from individuals or companies. Example - fund of the Bank of Brazil.
• Funding from other countries, international organizations and institutions such as the Rockefeller Foundation, the Ford Foundation, Inter-American Development Bank, World Bank, UNESCO, the United Nations Development Programme, World Health Organization, the World Wildlife Fund, the Fund Kellogg Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the Foundation Volkswagen.

Web-site: http://snob.ru/profile/28549/print/79007?v=1443713164
Web-site: http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20131016-brazil-tech-hubs-big-ambitions

Russian Day at the MWC 2015 Shanghai

Julia Arkhipova,
INNO-MIR, analyst

On 16 July, in Shanghai, “Russian Day”, a special event held within the Mobile World Congress Shanghai (MWC 2015) for the leading Russian IT companies in Russia, was a huge success. The visit from the Russian delegation in Shanghai from 14 - 16 of July was organised by the RVC in cooperation with RUSSOFT with support from the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation, the Russian Federation Trade Representative in China and the High Technology Industry Development Center “Torch”. The activities were coordinated by the Interregional Innovative Development Center INNO-MIR.

The trip of the Russian delegation to one of the largest forums in the sphere of mobile technologies has become one of the steps in the Russian IT-industry Export Support Programme, which is currently being conducted by RUSSOFT with support from the Russian Venture Company (RVC). During the three days, from 15 - 17 of July, the participants in the programme were able to acquaint themselves with the newest successes of the rapidly developing area of the industry, explore the world of the latest trends, products , services and understand the main aspect of the evolution of the global mobile ecosystem.“Participation in the Mobile Congress in Shanghai is incredibly interesting for Russian IT companies,” commented Valentin Makarov, President of RUSSOFT. “This interest is tied to the idea of breaking through into the Chinese and Southeast Asian markets as well as the possibility of finding strategic partnerships in China to create cooperative products for the global market.” The members of the Russian delegation who were present at the MWC 2015 were able to partake in every congress event, as well as join the specially organised seminar and contact exchange (“Russian Day”)...

6th University Business Forum

Julia Arkhipova,
INNO-MIR, analyst
 

Certificate of attendance-page-001 1 smallOn the 5th and 6th of March the Interregional Innovative Development Center INNO-MIR participated in the 6th University Business Forum which was held under patronage of the European Commission in Brussels. The event hosted more than four hundred delegates, representing the interests of high schools, large corporations, small and medium businesses, as well as national, regional and local authorities from Europe and even further abroad. The forum presented a unique opportunity to exchange experiences and discuss the newest directions in the innovation processes relating to the integration of the science and the business sectors. The conference’s main goal can be summarised as: finding ways to overcome the cultural divide between these two sectors and promoting new, stable, and closer cooperation.

The World in 2025

10 PREDICTIONS OF INNOVATION  

It’s human nature to want to know what’s coming.

As far back as one can look in history, humans have tried to predict everything from the weather and rise and fall of tides to, in more recent times, stock performance and who will reign as champion in a sporting event. From Nostradamus to Toffler to Kurzweil, academics, stronomers, economists, futurists, mathematicians, scientists, sociologists, sports enthusiasts and others have contributed to the science – and art – of predicting what is to come.

This paper is a compilation of 10 innovation predictions for the world in 2025, based on research done by Thomson Reuters analysts using the company’s patent and scientific literature solutions.

What will be the major innovations impacting our world in 2025?

DEMENTIA DECLINES

Understanding of the human genome and genetic mutations leads to improved detection of, and prevention methods for, the onset of neuro-degenerative diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s.

This work is vital to understanding human genetic variations and will enable scientists to begin to fix genetic malfunctions, such as those impacting dementia patients.

Scientific studies of dementia sufferers have been able to isolate specific chromosomes that cause different forms of the disease, including autosomal dominant frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), among others.

And, as the global population ages, preventing these diseases through understanding the genetics will become increasingly important.

SOLAR IS THE LARGEST SOURCE OF ENERGY ON THE PLANET

Methods for harvesting, storing and converting solar energy are so advanced and efficient that it becomes the primary source of energy on our planet.

Solar thermal and solar photovoltaic energy (from new dye-sensitized and thin-film materials) will heat buildings, water, and provide energy for devices in the home and office, as well as in retail buildings and manufacturing facilities.

TYPE I DIABETES IS PREVENTABLE

A versatile human genome engineering platform is a reality, paving the way for the modification of disease-causing genes and helping to prevent certain metabolic conditions.

The human genome engineering platform will pave the way for the modification of disease-causing genes in humans, leading to the prevention of type I diabetes, among other ailments.

FOOD SHORTAGES AND FOOD PRICE FLUCTUATIONS ARE THINGS OF THE PAST

Advancements in lighting technologies and imaging techniques, coupled with genetic crop modification, provide an environment ripe for successful indoor crop growth and detecting diseased foods.

Imaging techniques such as three-dimensional displays coupled with hyperspectral imaging will also be able to provide early detection of mal-developing crops and diseased animal proteins before human consumption.

Because there is reduced risk of crop failure, price fluctuations and food shortages will become things of the past.

ELECTRIC AIR TRANSPORTATION TAKES OFF

Light-weight aerospace engineering coupled with new battery technologies power electric vehicle transportation - on land and in the air.

Getting from point A to point B will be significantly different in 2025 from how it happens today.

Cars and airplanes will still exist, but they will be smarter, battery-powered, able to travel longer distances and more light-weight.

As these new planes will be able to take off and land in much smaller spaces, getting a pilot’s license could become the new rite-of-passage to adulthood in the 21st Century.

DIGITAL EVERYTHING...EVERYWHERE

From the smallest personal items to the largest continents, everything, everywhere will be digitally connected, and responsive to our wants and likes.

The digital world as we know it today will seem simple and rudimentary in 2025. If you think we’re electronically dependent now, you haven’t seen anything yet.

From cars and homes that respond to your every wish and want, to appliances that think for themselves, to interconnected geographies – from the most remote farmlands to bustling cities – we will all be digitally directed. Imagine the day when the entire continent ofAfricais completely, digitally connected. That day will happen in 2025.

PETROLEUM-BASED PACKAGING IS HISTORY; CELLULOSE-DERIVED PACKAGING RULES

Bio-nanocomposites based on nanocellulose make 100% fully biodegradeable packaging pervasive.

Whether for food, medicine, electronics, textiles or consumer products, all packaging will be made from cellulose-derived products.

Additionally, the new cellulosic packaging will play a part in pharmaceutical packaging that is ingested, such as in controlled–release medicines.

CANCER TREATMENTS HAVE VERY FEW TOXIC SIDE EFFECTS

Drug development is so much more precise, binding to specific proteins and using antibodies to give exact mechanisms of action, that the debilitating effects of toxic chemicals on patients is significantly reduced.

Just as Big Data is enabling companies to deliver personalized customer experiences, so too is life sciences moving from broad-brush drugs to very accurate and targeted treatments that result in significantly improved patient experiences.

The impact of these advancements will be that patients in 2025 will have much more targeted drug treatments that result in fewer toxic side effects.

DNA MAPPING AT BIRTH IS THE NORM TO MANAGE DISEASE RISK

The evolution of micro-total analysis systems (single-cell analysis) and advancements in nanotechnology, coupled with more widespread Big Data technologies, make DNA-mapping at birth the norm, as well as part of one’s annual physician exam.

Big Data will be embedded in society in the next decade, allowing medical researchers and physicians to use it to their advantage. In 2025, humans will have their DNA mapped at birth and checked annually to identify any changes that could point to the onset of autoimmune diseases.

TELEPORTATION IS TESTED

Kinematical techniques used to understand the Higgs Boson particles generated in the Large Hadron Collider advance such that quantum teleportation is more commonplace.

Although in 2025 we as humans won’t yet be able to teleport through space, a significant investment in and testing of quantum teleportation will be underway using other forms of matter.

Web-site: http://sciencewatch.com/sites/sw/files/m/pdf/World-2025.pdf

Rating of Innovative Regions

Rating of innovative regions has been developed by the Association of Innovative Regions of Russia in 2012 together with the Ministry of Economic Development, with the participation of representatives of regional administrations and leading experts in the country for the purposes of monitoring and control. AIRR team conducts regular updates rankings following the publication of new statistics.
The rating leaders are 11 regions in which innovative development index value exceeds 130% of the national average.


Four leaders remained the same as compared to last year's rating :
• St. Petersburg
• Moscow
• The Republic of Tatarstan
• Nizhny Novgorod region
The winners in category "Accelerate 2014" are: Leningrad region (moving up 25 positions ), Republic of Adygea (moving up 20 positions ) and Murmansk region (moving 18 positions ahead).
In the current version of the ranking among the regions of the greatest success achieved AIRR Kaluga region (into fifth place in the ranking ) and Novosibirsk region (moved into the group of "strong" innovators).

Rating of innovative regions


Leaders in terms of research and development are the following regions (over 130% of the average value , in brackets the percentage of the average value of the integral index of the regions of Russia):

1. Moscow ( 197.81 %)
2. St. Petersburg ( 183.43 %)
3. Tomsk region ( 161.73 %)
4. Novosibirsk region ( 148.45 %)
5. Moscow region ( 136.70 %)
6. Ivanovo region ( 136.55 %)
7. Ulyanovsk region ( 131.89 %)
8. The Republic of Tatarstan ( 131.01 %)

Web-site:http://www.i-regions.org/reyting_innovations_regions.pdf

"Human Rights for Animals" – For or Against?

Fight for the animal rights is one of the most progressive international social movements calling for a deeper, more fundamental changes in our society.

At the moment there are hundreds of societies for the protection of animals all over the world, some of which protect certain groups of animals (for example animals used in experiments or wild animals in zoos and circuses), others protect all animals.

Today the cultural level of the human society in each country can be judged by the way the animals are treated. Thus the change in the position of animals in developed countries is inevitable.

Not further than last week a New York appeals court will consider whether chimpanzees are entitled to "legal personhood".

A victory in the case could lead to a further expansion of rights for chimps and other higher-order animals, including elephants, dolphins, orcas and other non-human primates.

However this is not the first case of its kind when such rights are officially recognized for the animals.

 In 2008 the Spanish parliament recognized that great apes have the rights to life and liberty simular to men’s. We are talking about orangutans, gorillas and chimpanzees.

The initiators of the project are scientists from the international organization "Great Ape Project" who believe that our closest genetic relatives deserve the rights which had hitherto enjoyed only a man.

In 2010 Helsinki Group, which includes members of the British Society for the protection of whales and dolphins, proposed the adoption of the Bill of Rights for the animals.
The Bill states that each representative of cetaceans (whales, dolphins and beluga) has the right to life and no one has the right to be the owner of these creatures or do something that violates their rights, freedoms or the rules.

They decided to equalize the rights because these animals have exceptional intellectual abilities.

  • For example dolphins are self-aware (they can recognize themselves in a mirror), grieve for the dead pups, feed the sick relatives and help fishermen if they get feed for this.
  • Non-human primates are able to understand the meaning of the symbols and use items meaningless to them as exchange equivalent for food (money).
  • Studies have shown that dolphins and whales have complex structure of the brain. What is more, they also have self-consciousness close to the human level.

And that is why they deserve to be treated as "individuals" – we should respect their rights to life and liberty.

"The person needs a personality. If this is taken into account then intentional killing of such an individual is ethically similar to killing of a human being " – says Professor Tom White of Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles.

It is reported that the recognition of such animal rights will protect intelligent animals from murder, medical experimentation, purchase and sale, keeping in small cages in zoos and provide them with a decent living.

Education in the XXI Century: New Paths.

Julia Arkhipova,
INNO-MIR, analyst
 
From the 7th to the 10th of July, Paris was host to the 11th International Centre for Innovation and Education (ICIE) Conference, which the Centre for International Innovational Development "INNO-MIR" participated in. This year's central theme was focused around development of creative ability and innovativeness in both middle and high school. The conference posed an opportunity for various educators and psychologists from around the world to express their views and demonstrate original, innovational approaches to the problem, as well as exchange ideas and experience.
For four days, representatives of educational organisations from around the world, Australia to Brazil, attended plenary sessions and symposiums discussing questions that should concerning any caring educator, who thinks about the young generation's prospects and, eventually, the future of our planet. Specialized sessions and post-conference workshops explored concrete research in the area of methods allowing more fully opening up creative potential in students and developing their artistic self.

One Does Not Need To Be A Genius To Be An Innovator

Anastasia Minets,
Head of International Projects of  INNO-MIR

Last week the Interregional Center of Innovation Development (INNO-MIR) took part in the Innovation Convention 2014 held in Brussels on 10-11 March 2014. The event, organized by the European Commission, initially focused on the European Union members. However, non-European participants could also learn much, not only from the content, but also from the way such a big international event was organized.
According the organizers, the event was intended to provide "a platform to debate and inform policies that will contribute towards the building of a research and innovation eco-system in Europe that can support this objective." The mission of the Convention – creation of a  innovation-friendly environment that promotes open communication, sharing of information and experience within European innovation community, politicians, representatives of the young generation and with other regions and countries interested in cooperation.
During the meetings and parallel sessions, a wide range of questions on innovation culture, education, political support of innovations, international cooperation were discussed. Also the winners of the 2014 EU Prize for Women Innovators were announced, and Barcelona was awarded with the European Capital of Innovation ("iCapital") prize.
The basic idea, which could become the slogan of the Convention: "Let's cooperate!" This idea sounded in all the discussed topics.

A Caring Approach to the World Around Us

Touch the world around you, the Nature, the people very gently. Take what you need in moderation. No more, no less.
Do not suck the life out of the world around you, for every day it lights the stars and sun up in the sky, paints the earth in the colour of summer, autumn, winter and spring. One moment the tree that you walk past every day suddenly comes to life, and you catch yourself thinking about greeting him, like an equal. You reach an understanding that 'the world is a reflection of oneself'...
Always remember that the world around you is your world, that it is different aspects of you, various realizations of who you are.
We bring to your attention a wonderful example of a caring attitude to the world - a film "Happy People" by Dmitry Vasjukov.

The Essence and Structure of the Modern Innovation-oriented Culture or What We Need for Creative Work

Tatiana Rubanova, painter

To begin with let's define what Innovative culture is, although I prefer terms like “culture in modern comprehension” or “dynamic concept of culture”...

Modern society has already crossed the line when the abilities to read, write and understand the basic laws of the universe are seen as an achievement worthy of a separate term "culture." Moreover, (and this is even more important): it has crossed the border, when a person who did not have certain cultural skills or knowledge was just of no importance to the culture and society and couldn't make an impact on the development of the planet. It seemed that such a man just didn't exist. He/she seemed to be a kind of ballast, protoplasm.

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