Russia: Nanotechnology Country Profile

34 Pages Posted: 7 Feb 2015

See all articles by Maria Karaulova

Maria Karaulova

University of Manchester - Manchester Institute of Innovation Research

Mikhail Gershman

National Research University Higher School of Economics

Date Written: February 6, 2015


The Russian Federation is continuing with programmes to renew its national innovation system and to implement its nanotechnology development policy. The state continues as the main driver for innovation, and it is also the most important intermediary between scientific organisations and private sector companies. The government-controlled Joint Stock Company RUSNANO occupies most of the space in nanotechnology commercialisation, both by the amount of the investment and by the variety of activities. The federal government sets science priorities through government programmes and by allocating funds in prioritised orders annually, and pushes innovation through state-owned companies and corporations. The resulting system is a hybrid between a planned science and technology system and a more decentralised system of innovation.

There are many risks associated with the development of the nanotechnology science and innovation system in Russia. One of them is a great reliance on changing agendas; others include high centralisation, limited public engagement, weaknesses in the development and enforcement of standards and regulation, the underdevelopment of markets and the lack of internal demand for nanotechnology processes and products. Additionally, limited attention is paid to possible environmental and health and safety risks associated with nanotechnology.

Stakeholders involved in the innovation process of nanotechnology in Russia have to rely heavily on favourable political will to continue the state funding of nanotechnology. There is a high level of uncertainty and instability in nanotechnology and related markets, notwithstanding continuous investment in science and efforts to undertake large-scale innovation capacity building projects.

Keywords: nanotechnology, Russia, innovation, national innovation system

JEL Classification: O32, O38

Suggested Citation

Karaulova, Maria and Gershman, Mikhail, Russia: Nanotechnology Country Profile (February 6, 2015). Available at SSRN: or

Maria Karaulova (Contact Author)

University of Manchester - Manchester Institute of Innovation Research ( email )

Booth Street West
Manchester, M15 6PB
United Kingdom

Mikhail Gershman

National Research University Higher School of Economics ( email )

Myasnitskaya street, 20
Moscow, Moscow 119017

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