The changing structure of international labour markets and the shortage of jobs for young professionals in the countrys regions are the key challenges for Russian economic development in the twenty-first century. The pull of major urban metropolises is creating imbalances in the workforce available to their small and medium-sized counterparts, and slowing the diversification of local economies. In these complex and unpredictable times, an increasingly important role is being played by young entrepreneurs, who are flexible, proactive, sensitive to innovation, and ready to change the environment around them. They possess the reserves of energy and time needed to experiment, and are developing new economic sectors based on promising ideas and advanced technologies, and creating local manufacturing industries as they revive and rethink traditional crafts. Their efforts are helpig regions to grow their human capital and establish new city brands, and the structure of international exports is changing in favour of rceative goods and services.