SPIEF: Vladimir Mau leads panel session on Digital Economy and Education
On May 24, Rector of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA) Vladimir Mau moderated a panel session, The Digital Economy and Education: Changing the Paradigm, as part of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. Russian Minister of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media Konstantin Noskov attended the discussion.
Dr. Mau opened the discussion and suggested discussing the risks and opportunities of the development of education, pointing out that it was a joint session with representatives of the Russian-French University. Dr. Mau is also the president of the RFU, which includes the Presidential Academy, along with Russian Trade Academy, RUDN University, MEPI, University of Nice Sophia Antipolis and three leading French business schools – EDHEC BS, NEOMA BS, and SKEMA BS.
The first speaker was Minister of Communications Konstantin Noskov. “Speaking about education in the digital economy, we often turn toward new professions related to big data, robotics and artificial intelligence. But the digital economy is influencing us right now, it is already changing the labor market,” the speaker said. Many traditional professions are being ousted from the market. Therefore, a need arises to retrain people and direct them to new labor markets, the minister explained: “The digital economy is not tomorrow; it is the present. It is already promoting changes in education.”
“The Academy's competitors are not universities, but businesses that provide educational services. Diversification is one of the main trends in modern education,” Vladimir Mau said before giving the floor to President of the Eksmo-AST Publishing Group, President of the Russian Textbook Corporation Oleg Novikov. “The publishing industry faced the digitalization problem eight years ago – they had to decide what its role would be,” he added.
“If you do not try to contrast regular books against digital ones, then there is no problem, because digital books actually complement regular ones and make them more accessible. Now the situation in education is similar,” the expert said, adding that the goal is to help students adapt and acquire skills that are in demand in the 21st century. If the groundwork is laid at school, then we will foster modern professionals and an intellectual economy, human capital. “It is important to meet the students’ needs today, to listen to them. They master digital technologies quicker than their teachers,” Oleg Novikov said.
Representatives of business schools that are part of the Russian-French University also spoke at the plenary session.
Vladimir Mau summarized the results of the meeting. The Russian-French University was opened two years ago, and 42 joint programs have been developed, he noted. “Our joint program with the NEOMA school has received 160 applications for training in Russia. We are very grateful to our French partners,” said Vladimir Mau. “In my understanding, a university's task is to foster individuals who are able to adapt rather than narrow professionals.”