Born August 18, 1959 in Leningrad.
After graduating, in 1981, from the Leningrad Institute of Railway Engineers, worked as a workshop expert of the Leningrad-Baltic Locomotive Depot of the Oktyabrskaya Railways.
1983–1984: carried out Young Communist League work in Leningrad.
1984–1990: served as an officer in the Soviet Army, in the army press division.
1990–1991: people’s deputy of the Leningrad City Soviet, head of the Leningrad Soviet and city executive committee press centre.
1991–1996: Chairman of the Press and Media Committee of the St. Petersburg Mayor’s Office, representative of the Ministry for Information and the Press of Russia.
1996–1999: Deputy Chairman of the State Press Committee of the Russian Federation.
November 1999: President, Centre for Strategic Research (Moscow).
January 2002 – June 2009: member of the Council of the Federation, Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation (CF FARF), representative of the Administration of the Irkutsk Region on the CF FARF; 2002–2006: Chairman of the CF Commission on information policy.
2004–2009: Vice Chairman of the CF FARF
2006: by directive of the Government of the RF, appointed authorized representative for the SCO Business Council and elected Chairman of the SCO Business Council; re-elected in 2009.
2009–2012: Governor and Chairman of the Government of the Irkutsk Region.
On June 7, 2012, at the SCO summit in Beijing, appointed Secretary-General of the Organisation for January 1, 2013 through December 31, 2015.
Professor, Head of Political Psychology Department, St. Petersburg University, since 2008, CSc (Psych.), associate professor of MGIMO (U) of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation.
Member of the Union of Journalists of the USSR and of Russia since 1988.
Marries with a daughter and a grandson.
Awards: Order ‘For services to the Homeland’ 4th degree, Order of Honour, medals, officer of the state Order of the Legion d’Honneur (France), medal ‘For strengthening Russian–Chinese Friendship’.