A socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of international conventions, congress, exhibitions, business, social and sporting, public, and cultural events.

The Roscongress Foundation is a socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of international conventions; exhibitions; and business, public, sporting, and cultural events. It was established in pursuance of a decision by the President of the Russian Federation.

The Foundation was established in 2007 with the aim of facilitating the development of Russia’s economic potential, promoting its national interests, and strengthening the country’s image. One of the roles of the Foundation is to comprehensively evaluate, analyse, and cover issues on the Russian and global economic agendas. It also offers administrative services, provides promotional support for business projects and attracting investment, and helps foster social entrepreneurship and charitable initiatives.

Each year, the Foundation’s events draw participants from 208 countries and territories, with more than 15,000 media representatives working on-site at Roscongress’ various venues. The Foundation benefits from analytical and professional expertise provided by 5000 people working in Russia and abroad. In addition, it works in close cooperation with 155 economic partners; industrialists’ and entrepreneurs’ unions; and financial, trade, and business associations from 75 countries worldwide.

The Roscongress Foundation has Telegram channels in Russian (t.me/Roscongress), English (t.me/RoscongressDirect), and Spanish (t.me/RoscongressEsp). Official website and Information and Analytical System of the Roscongress Foundation: roscongress.org.

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The New Elite: How Accumulated Knowledge Can be Converted into Capital
5 June 2021
14:00—15:15
KEY CONCLUSIONS
The set of relevant skills and expertise is constantly changing

When people talk about education, they are often referring to a single narrow block from this whole set [of universal, functional, and relevant skills] […] The correct answer is that all these skills […] are universally important […] In late 2020, new trends emerged in all three dimensions […] In universal skills […] now the most relevant trend […] is change management […] As for functional skills […], every day there are some new trends […] in technologies in each separate industry […] And the biggest demand from the universal [skills] is the theme of sustainable development and ESG, — Alexey Dolinsky, Co-founder, Coursalytics; Member of the Russian Government Expert Council.

We also […] interviewed our corporate clients […] about the skills they would like to teach their employees. We found basically the same set of leadership competencies [...] They are change management skills, interaction in cross-functional teams, and digital literacy. I think that state-owned companies are adding [their own voice] to this point and are still largely switching to digital, — Ksenia Trifonova, Director for External and Internal Communications, Moscow School of Management SKOLKOVO.

To stay relevant on the labour market, you have to maintain the ability for life-long learning

The most important skill is knowing how to learn and ideally loving to do it […] We won’t be able to learn all the academic and theoretical knowledge. And it’s obvious that […] what we will learn today may not be needed tomorrow. But to be able to learn something and the flexibility [...] to listen to feedback, be open, and take into account an alternative point of view [...] This adaptability is a very important element today. In addition, the ability to be flexible and adapt […] should be attributable to a balanced internal psychological state […] Then you will be effective, productive, and healthy, — Tatiana Sorokina, General Manager, IBM Russia & CIS.

The most important thing is to learn and […] maintain learning skills throughout life. This comes from inquisitiveness and curiosity […] Gratitude is surprisingly good at helping us return […] to the state of greatest productivity, when we feel good and can […] produce a lot, feel […] energy, are ready to share, and so on […] Feeling grateful is the easiest way to get to this state. When we feel sincere gratitude to ourselves and those around us, we talk [...] about this and that helps us a lot, — Alexey Dolinsky, Co-founder, Coursalytics; Member of the Russian Government Expert Council.

Approaches to traditional education are changing and also being influenced by business

Over the past five years, the quality of graduates leaving university has nevertheless become much closer to us and to employers. This is partly because the generation of teachers has changed […], on the other hand, it’s because […] business works differently with the education system, — Olga Dergunova, Deputy President and Chairman of the Management Board, VTB Bank.

Our goal is to create opportunities for people to learn these soft skills and prepare them for the future and the challenges that may loom on the horizon. We must understand that current jobs may disappear in the future and the professions themselves may change. By developing their skills and expertise, people will become more flexible. They will be less vulnerable in the face of the challenges that await us, — Aleksandar Ruzevic, Chief Executive Officer, Coca-Cola HBC Russia.

Businesses are creating educational programmes to correct the shortcomings of traditional education

A link needs to be established between the theoretical knowledge that young people receive at universities and the best practices that are applied in business […] We are setting up summer internships, internship programmes, and special mentoring systems. We have 15 business modules that aim to eliminate these gaps in skills, — Aleksandar Ruzevic, Chief Executive Officer, Coca-Cola HBC Russia.

Traditional education is not always important for an entrepreneur

If we are talking about what knowledge and skills are lacking, it all depends on the stage during which the founder came to us with a startup. Unicorns are not born unicorns right away. They are born, rather, as little ponies. And on the way from a pony to becoming a unicorn, they go through many different stages of development, and at each of these stages, they need a certain set of knowledge, skills, and expertise, — Natalya Magidey, Head, Sberbank Accelerator; Managing Director, SberZ.

An entrepreneur […] comes in with an excellent idea for a fellow student […] to make money. Because […] friends and family and the people who make these first investments are the people you know well, — Olga Dergunova, Deputy President and Chairman of the Management Board, VTB Bank.

ISSUES
Students aren’t engaged in the learning process and are getting an education to tick a box

A student has very little time if you want him to ultimately be a quality product. The student must study. And if you are doing a good balanced curriculum, you don’t want the student to be distracted by work […] in order to earn money […] We don’t want him to go for an internship just to tick a box that he was there. We want him to leave pollinated with new knowledge, — Olga Dergunova, Deputy President and Chairman of the Management Board, VTB Bank.

University graduates lack practical knowledge

The new generations are now mastering theoretical knowledge very quickly. They come to companies and, of course, they want to have a career quickly. However, in order for them to do this, it is crucial to eliminate this gap. And this gap is mainly concentrated on soft skills […] These are the skills and competencies that they […] cannot acquire in their university education, — Aleksandar Ruzevic, Chief Executive Officer, Coca-Cola HBC Russia.

SOLUTIONS
Introduce new forms of training in the educational process to strengthen the practical component

The confrontation of theoretical and practical knowledge is not working [...] They need to be united and a link needs to be created that will allow people to be ready for the current conditions. And it will also satisfy their thirst for fast career growth, — Aleksandar Ruzevic, Chief Executive Officer, Coca-Cola HBC Russia.

We [business] are forced [...] to look for new ways of getting inside universities so that together with the university we can give students the opportunity to essentially work to acquire these professional skills directly within the walls of the university […] When they get out, we have […] a student who doesn’t need to be retrained, — Olga Dergunova, Deputy President and Chairman of the Management Board, VTB Bank.

Of course, business wants a ready-made [specialist]. But something needs to be done for this, and business understands this. This involves the practical involvement of people, when [...] the fruits of their labour are real products for business [...] This involves a completely different kind of motivation. This involves a completely different level of awareness of the value that you have brought and the degree of confidence you have that you can engage in practical business affairs […] In the student environment […], this is a very important element – their condition in the process of education, — Tatiana Sorokina, General Manager, IBM Russia & CIS.

Business can contribute both to theory and to practical […] elements of education […] A more traditional […] joint path is when we are involved in the development of certain programmes at universities and allocate our resources for these programmes that are fully or partially offered at these universities […] But […] the realities of modern life call for some other formats as well […] We […] have been doing this for many years, and […] not only […] in order to get good specialists for ourselves later, but also for organic participation in what is socially significant for our country […] Big business […] is now actively participating in this, and this is a good thing, — Tatiana Sorokina, General Manager, IBM Russia & CIS.