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The first future preparedness index

June 02, 2017, 4:17 UTC+3
1 pages in this article


  • The right criteria are the key to assessing future preparedness

"Our main challenge is not to calculate the scores, but to set out the criteria that will help assess future preparedness," said Fyodor Lukyanov, Research Director, Foundation for Development and Support of the Valdai Discussion Club.

  • The pilot rating made for the G20 nations based on 10 key criteria showed the need for further adjustments

"After defining the 10 key focus areas and outlining a vision of what a country needs to gain leadership in any given focus area going forward, we found the existing ratings prepared by the high-profile global organisations primarily based on the international statistical data. We made relevant calculations and used some of those ratings as a source of inputs for our own ranking," said Valery Fedorov, Director General, Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM).

"I believe that it would be wrong to use the existing ratings for those purposes. All the existing ratings generally extrapolate present trends to construct an image of the future," said Andrei Fursenko, Aide to the President of the Russian Federation.

  • Rich natural resources are no guarantee of future competitiveness

 "When analysing the environmental relevance of natural resources in 10–15 years from now, our experts named the availability of such resources as only one of the three key factors, the other two being rational use of resources <...> and comprehensive waste recycling. <...> Hence, in 10–15 years, the countries that are now leading the charge in terms of natural resources availability may find themselves in the league of underachievers or even outsiders," said Valery Fedorov.

"Japan scored pretty high in the rating of natural resources and ecology. But, surprisingly enough, it was the UK that took the top spot in the rating <...>, with Russia ranking somewhere in between. Out of a total of 100 scores, we assigned it 39 points, which is better than China and India. The US is among the leaders," said Valery Fedorov.

"Out of 20 rated countries, Saudi Arabia, the country with the richest and cheapest energy resources as of today, got the lowest score," said Valery Fedorov.

  • The Education factor is pivotal

This criterion includes "the expected study duration, the share of people with higher education, the share of foreign students in the country, the level of national education expenditures, the adult literacy rate, the number of higher institutions among the Top 100 world's best universities, the number of prize winners in international academic competitions", said Valery Fedorov.

"Those countries that will be able to create conditions for talent to flourish by developing young people and preparing them so that they can live and work effectively in a new society will become future leaders," said Alexander Ivlev, Country Managing Partner for Russia, EY.

“I think our challenge in the United States is to overcome this educational divide and provide technical and scientific education at a younger age and prepare a workforce that is ready for the 21st century, otherwise I think they will sink further and further into unemployment and bad health habits and will not be prepared for the world,” said Angela Stent, Director, Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies, Georgetown University

  • The Society factor should take into account the elderly dependency rate growth

"In this area, Japan is one of the leading countries <...>. The average healthy life expectancy is 75 years <...> But it's a demographic problem: the Japanese society is rapidly aging, and now ¼ of the Japanese population are elderly people of 65 years of age or older," said Akiyoshi Komaki, Moscow Bureau Chief, Asahi Shimbun.

  • The competitive economic ability of states will depend on three aspects

"<...> the level of production research intensity, <...> the level of automation and robotisation of production, <...> cost-effective production and economical consumption," said Valery Fedorov.

  • The role of science in the future society is difficult to assess based on the present situation

"If we were talking about the Nobel Prize winners in the beginning of the last century, it would characterise the science. Today<...> the bias percentage is significantly higher than 100 years ago. Today, after the scientometrics has come to the fore, <...> this parameter does not work because it became the object of manipulation. If we talk about the future, fundamental studies have a slightly different weight than the funding of current research work", said Andrei Fursenko.

  • The expert group will continue its work on the index and submit it in autumn 2017
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