Swiss-Russian Roundtable at the “Open Innovations Forum”

Local news, 20.12.2020

One of the highlights for the Science & Technology Unit of the Embassy was the organization of and participation in the Swiss-Russian Roundtable “New and High Technologies in Industry and Cooperation between Science and Industry” in the framework of the Open Innovations Forum, one of the flagship events for the Russian academic and research community, which took place already for the ninth time this year.

The Swiss-Russian Roundtable was co-organized with the International Union of Instrument & ICT Engineers, an official partner of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of Russia (MSHE), therefore it took place in the Pavilion of the Ministry.

Russia, still lagging behind in innovation due to a very weak links between research and business, really needs international experience in this field. And Switzerland, being innovator # 1 in the world according to Global Innovation Index 2020 for the 10-th consecutive year, could not only serve as an example, but also become a reliable partner for Russia. 

During the event, Mr. Andrey Melnikov, Head of Scientific Affairs, told the participants about the education, research and innovation landscape of Switzerland, as well as about the bilateral cooperation in science and technology. Mr. Lorenz Widmer, Director of the Swiss Business Hub in Russia, informed the audience about the opportunities available for Russian high-tech startups in Switzerland and how his organization could assist them in deployment there. While Mr. Fabian Kneubühler, a researcher from the ETHZ, shared his practical experience how his institute worked with industry. In addition, the participants were greeted online by Professor Konrad Wegener, Director of Machine Tool and Manufacturing Institute of the ETHZ. 

Due to the COVID restrictions, the Roundtable took place in a hybrid form – 10 participants at the table representing some leading Russian universities (Bauman, MISiS, Stankin, etc.) and 60 online participants, additionally the event was watched by around 250 people on YouTube. The audience especially appreciated the participation of the ETHZ. The interaction with the Swiss delegation continued afterwards during its round of the exhibition.