Open Innovations: How Russian Educational Ecosystem is Embracing Digitization


With an aim to create greater awareness about various technological advancements happening while delivering university level education, Open Innovations Forum conducted a meeting “Universidigit. Digitalization of universities: tribute to fashion or unavoidable stage of development?”

This meeting was conducted as part of the business programme at the Open Innovations International Forum.

The event touched upon issues related to digitalization of the educational environment. The speakers discussed how universities are changing in the 21 century, how the digital transformation is affecting the quality of education, and how the business community is interacting with universities.

Today, digitalization of education is not an isolated initiative of leading universities and organizations but a pressing need of the modern world. Online technologies are changing the status quo of traditional educational systems, and special care is needed here.

“The most challenging interaction is where you need to translate very high competencies, since this is the offline environment. Why do we need online? Firstly, it is economically beneficial to relocate a number of formats to the online environment. Secondly, this enables us to reach out to a wider target audience,” says Dmitry Kalaev, Deputy Director for Acceleration and Education Programme at the Internet Initiatives Development Fund.

Digitalization of the educational environment bears both multiple opportunities and threats, the speakers believe. Online services reduce the cost and improve availability of education but also impair the quality of the knowledge being transferred.

To integrate new technologies seamlessly into the educational environment is a challenging task, which thousands of organizations around the world are working on.

And in order to embrace digitization of educational ecosystems such as universities – technologies such as cloud computing, software driven networks, and virtualisation are ideally poised to further the effort of digitization – globally as well as in Russia.