May 12, 2022
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“Effective managers” vs. engineers – who will win?

Photo: Sergey Bobylev / TASS

Western experts are increasingly saying that the Russian economy is currently coping with unprecedented sanctions challenges. Recently, the British magazine The Economist expressed this opinion.

This makes me happy. But it is also upsetting, since the sale of energy carriers is called the most important factor in the stability of the Russian economy under Western pressure.

There is only one way to challenge this: to change the model of Russia’s economic development, relying on the real economy.

– In industry, it is necessary to raise the technological level and simultaneously introduce digital management methods – both business processes, that is, the organization of production and communication with the outside world, and technological processes and digitalization. It is a single process, indivisible. doctor of technical sciences, professor, expert in the field of rocket and space and military-industrial complex, mechanical engineering, metalworking and foundry production, on-board test engineer for aviation and space technology Vladimir Evseev:

– And it is absolutely right that such a course is being taken in our country now. But the same neoliberal model of our economy, which does not allow us to develop it comprehensively, slows us down. We need real industrialization – we need to create hundreds, if not thousands, of flexible, automated, high-tech industries that could supply the market with both individual components and final products. Different levels and different directions. This requires the Federal Comprehensive Target Program, regional and sectoral programs.

Following. It is necessary to immediately organize a large-scale process of investment through any funding channels – the state budget, the private sector, especially it is necessary to attract big business. Now this process does not fully correspond to the necessary scale of the revival of industry and the Russian economy.

Innovation. Since Soviet times and now, we have millions of developments not only in defense, but also in any industry. There are also many new projects created by small industrial enterprises. But, since branch science in our country is practically ruined in all areas, it must be immediately revived – there are specialists, there is a desire, and there are opportunities. Everything we need has already been developed, but patents and know-how lie dormant, they are not being promoted, because it is impossible to innovate under the current model of economic and industrial development. Even at the level of state corporations, it is not profitable for them, there are production risks (it is not known what will happen, especially if new developments come from other companies, small businesses or scientific institutions).

In terms of innovation, it is necessary to establish a large-scale process of innovative industrial type. All branch remnants of science should be directed towards creating new, innovative products at the modern level and implementing them. For the large-scale implementation of this direction, it is necessary to recreate the State Committee for Science and Technology at the modern level, which should have the authority and the necessary resources (an analogue of the Soviet-era SCST).

Import substitution was announced to us in 2015, we quickly drew out the resources and available domestic developments and began to replace them. Progress here has been good. But after a couple of years, everything died out, the process came to naught. The process was led by Deputy Prime Minister A. Dvorkovich. And now, again, they suddenly woke up, they are trying to start the process of import substitution in the country’s economy again. And the time when import substitution had to be increased in order for today’s external impact on the economy of our country to be minimal has been missed. Now, in fact, it is necessary to replace everything, only then we will move forward, we will be able to develop our own, modernized industry and the entire economy.

“SP”: – And then not only our raw materials will be in demand in foreign markets …

– Certainly. But even now we have something to trade. All space and related developments and technologies will certainly be in demand all over the world, since they may well become competitive. It’s just that today the Americans crushed everyone here. But when the dollar system and the global dominance of the United States goes downhill (which is already observed), our developments will start to play.

We have something to offer the world. This applies not only to high-tech industries such as space. Our mechanical engineering also has a strong potential. Turbines, electric and nuclear power plants etc. We have many developments and good products. And the process we are talking about will bring to the international market a huge amount of high-tech products and technologies under the Russian brand.

And the process of joining the efforts of interested countries, primarily with China and India, will be launched immediately, joint development and joint investment in such projects to boost the industry both in them and in our country. These will be joint projects financed in rubles, yuan, rupees etc. They will help us to quickly bring to mind the modernization of the industry and bring its products to the international market.

“SP”: – Into a new life with old staff?

— Of course, we are talking about expanding our technological and economic priority to the whole world, although we have a huge problem with the training and use of professional personnel. Colossal! If we are preparing something else in our defense sector, in general, somehow keeping the required level, then in general civilian sectors – in industry, science, education – things are much worse there. So you just type in the search engine “personnel problem in Russia” – so many sites on this problem will fall out … But even here, with the right approach, we can also say our weighty word at the world level. Because we have preserved in people a serious base of higher education from Soviet times, graduates of that engineering school are still alive. But we must immediately return to the positions occupied by our Soviet engineering school. She was then in demand all over the world.

And now we can occupy this niche by training personnel for our economy and industry. But it is necessary to close the universities that graduate the so-called “economists and effective managers”, who, having no practice, immediately occupy high positions. And this is where science, industry, and economics end immediately.

So, we can organize the training of specialists not only for ourselves, but also for all interested countries, both developing and developed. It will be an ideological, engineering, scientific, publishing system that unites a number of countries outside the dollar system, outside the influence of the United States and the European Union. After all, even now we have students from many countries. And when we bring the political, economic and professional aspects of this process to the required level, the number of people wishing to study at our universities will increase. Actually, the basis for their further work is already there.

Dozens of countries buy weapons from us. We recently delivered S-400 complexes to India. This is a significant figure, especially considering the military special operation in Ukraine. But are we not able to reach such a level that they also buy general civilian products from us, for example, machine-building and construction equipment? So that they do not buy a Caterpillar, but a Russian tractor from the Kirov Plant.

Excellent tractors, but now they are made, at best, a hundred pieces, and in Soviet times hundreds of thousands were made. Or the famous Rostselmash, owned by my colleague Konstantin BabkinHead of the Council of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation for Industrial Development and Competitiveness of the Russian Economy. He owned factories in Canada, and translated Western technologies, as well as everything he earned in Rostselmash. And now Rostselmash is sweet. Not only our farmers are in line for it, but also those who want to buy machines from this agro-industrial holding from many European countries. This is what a patriotic approach with knowledge of the matter means. And we can achieve this nationwide.

And what happened to Russian aviation? “Effective managers” pushed our wonderful Tu, Ily and new aircraft projects of all domestic aviation design bureaus out of the airlines, opening the way for foreign technology. And now, when we have blocked the supply and use of imported aircraft and components, we urgently got the pending projects in order to produce and put our legendary aircraft on the wing.

“SP”: – What is now necessary in order not to repeat such mistakes of past years?

– Develop a real strategy, economic and industrial policy. The law on industrial policy was adopted long ago, but it is slowed down and torpedoed, first of all, by the government bureaucracy. And it is necessary to start, finally, strategic planning in the country (there is also a federal law). But the Ministry of Economic Development is not engaged in this and will not cope, it is necessary to create a modern specialized body – Rosplan. By the way, the EAEU has a similar ministry headed by Academician Sergey Glazyev in the rank of Minister for Integration and Macroeconomics of the Eurasian Economic Commission. He is engaged in strategic planning in cooperation with other member countries of the Union.

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