The Russian Federation is a key cooperation partner for Germany. Its growth market offers potential for innovative German enterprises. Cooperation in the areas of science and research is one of the cornerstones of German-Russian relations, as reflected by the German-Russian Year of Education, Research and Innovation 2011/2012. In addition to this year of science, the Russia country campaign has been launched in March 2012. Its aim is to draw even more attention in Russia to Germany as a key location for innovation and to make use of synergetic effects at the same time.
With this country-specific campaign, which runs for two years Germany hopes to cast itself as an attractive partner in education, research and innovation and to enhance the visibility in Russia of Germany’s top-class research and cutting-edge technology. The key thematic fields are nanotechnology, environmental technology/energy efficiency, health, and optical technologies. Medium-term objectives include the initiation of teaming agreements between German and Russian research institutions and innovative businesses, building up cooperation in the area of training of skilled staff, and creating incentives for (even more) knowledge-intensive exchanges between the two countries, also with an eye to economic cooperation. A further campaign objective is to stimulate and step up teaming agreements with partners outside the metropolitan areas of Moscow and St. Petersburg.
In order to achieve these goals, the BMBF assists and supports German research institutions and SMEs in heightening their presence and visibility in Russia. They act as a showcase of Germany’s strength in research and innovation in Russia and engage in an intensive dialogue with Russian partners. A network approach has been chosen to provide an equal platform to both research and innovation. Thanks to its established cluster and network structures, Germany enjoys high standing worldwide. Since these structures cover the entire range of products and services, they are the perfect partners with whom to implement the campaign. The competition to select national innovation networks and clusters from within the identified thematic fields has taken place in late 2011. The BMBF provides the four winner networks with funds for a period of 24 months to promote their presence in Russia and intensify a variety of cooperative efforts with Russian partners. One special feature of the Russia country campaign is that it also addresses aspects of vocational training.