Russia through the hidden eye (continuation)

Lalas

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Faculty of Global Processes, Moscow State University
At the GLOBALISTICS 2023 Congress, a report by MSU scientists "Rethinking the Limits to Growth" was presented

Author: Dean's Office
Publication date: 14.11.2023


Categories: Science


At the autumn session of the Congress "Global Studies", the Dean of the FSP MSU, Professor I.V. Ilyin, presented the results of a large scientific work carried out at the FSP MSU. In October 2023, the Springer Publishing House published a report (monograph) "Rethinking the Limits of Growth", prepared by a group of Russian scientists under the leadership of the Rector of Moscow State University, Academician V.A. Sadovnichy, and a foreign member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Professor of the Faculty of State Engineering of Moscow State University A.A. Akaev.

The report, edited by V.A. Sadovnichy, A.A. Akaev, I.V. Ilyin, S.Y. Malkov, L.E. Grinin, and A.V. Korotaev, was prepared in 2020–2022 as part of the development program of the Interdisciplinary Scientific and Educational School of Moscow State University "Mathematical Methods for the Analysis of Complex Systems" and the implementation of a grant from the Russian Science Foundation.*

The report is timed to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the publication of the famous report to the Club of Rome "The Limits to Growth" (D. Meadows et al.) and summarizes the long-term scientific work of the team on the study of the dynamics of the world system.

The authors propose a new complex modeling method based on the positions of historicism and allowing forecasting on long time intervals, the testing of which has shown its effectiveness. The very title – "Rethinking the Limits of Growth" – also points to the possibility of a way out of the catastrophic situation that threatens humanity.

The work carried out at Moscow State University differs significantly from the work and conclusions of the Club of Rome in a number of parameters: in the breadth of the problems considered; on the complexity of the approach; according to the research methodology, which is much more complex, more grounded mathematically, and the analysis of global changes is based on the identification of patterns of world dynamics over a historical period of several thousand years; by the scope of testing of model calculations; by time intervals on which the state of planet Earth and humanity is considered and predicted.

The results of the authors of the report (the Russian version is "Overcoming the Limits of Growth") can be interpreted as a concretization, a development of the idea of humanity's transition to the noospheric stage of human evolution, based on the latest research in a number of fields of science, primarily cybernetics, biology, and geophysics. It is this model of human evolution that makes it possible to provide concrete solutions to the global problems of humanity, which the authors do. The conclusions of the report and the proposals based on them in comparison with the conclusions of the works of the Club of Rome are distinguished by optimism, implicit in the proposed solutions to the global problems of the planet there is a belief in the triumph of human reason.

Scenarios for the development of humanity have been developed to solve key global problems. The report refutes a number of assumptions about the high probability of catastrophic scenarios of the global future and proposes long-term paths based on a model developed by Russian scientists related to the reasonable and calculated co-development of energy, economy, society, a sustainable environmental situation and the construction of a multipolar world based on the principles of a broad partnership of civilizations.

The report "Rethinking the Limits to Growth" was discussed at the meetings of the Club of Rome in 2021-2022, received the approval of full members of the Club of Rome and was published under the auspices of the Russian Association for the Promotion of the Club of Rome. The Association for the Promotion of the Club of Rome was established in the USSR in 1989. Until 2003, its president was Academician D.M. Gvishiani.

Link to the monograph on the website of the publishing house "Springer":
https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-3-031-34999-7"

...

...
The work is timed to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the publication of the famous report to the Club of Rome "The Limits to Growth" authored by D. Meadows and his colleagues and summarizes the long-term scientific work of the team on the study of the dynamics of the world system.
...
The report "Rethinking the Limits to Growth" was discussed at the meetings of the Club of Rome in 2021-2022 and was approved by full members of the Club of Rome."


**




Alexander Ivanovich AGEEV

Director General of the International Research Institute of Management Problems (IMNIIPU)...

PARTNERS
IRIAS actively cooperates with the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS), as well as with other academies of sciences of the host countries and their scientific organizations.

The Institute maintains close relations with many world-class organizations of the world’s leading countries.
...


1687893980927.png

http://mniipu.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/DARPA.jpg

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At the GLOBALISTICS 2023 Congress, a report by MSU scientists "Rethinking the Limits to Growth" was presented
...
The report, edited by V.A. Sadovnichy, A.A. Akaev, I.V. Ilyin, S.Y. Malkov, L.E. Grinin, and A.V. Korotaev, was prepared in 2020–2022 as part of the development program of the Interdisciplinary Scientific and Educational School of Moscow State University "Mathematical Methods for the Analysis of Complex Systems" and the implementation of a grant from the Russian Science Foundation.*
COVID-19 pandemic as a trigger for the acceleration of the cybernetic revolution, transition from e-government to e-state, and change in social relations

Authors: Leonid Grinin (HSE University, Moscow; Institute of Oriental Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia), Anton Grinin (Moscow State Lomonosov University, Russia), Andrey Korotayev (HSE University, Moscow; Institute of Oriental Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia)

Received 7 April 2021, Revised 4 November 2021, Accepted 7 November 2021, Available online 12 November 2021, Version of Record 19 January 2022.

(excerpts)

Highlights

COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the MANBRIC-convergence.

MANBRIC-convergence involves medical, additive, bio-, nano-, info-, robotics, and cognitive technologies.

COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating start of final phase of Cybernetic Revolution.

Final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution will begin in the 2030s.

A special role will be played by socio-technical self-regulating systems (SSSs).



Abstract

Among many influences that the pandemic has and will have on society and the World System as a whole, one of the most important is the acceleration of the start of a new technological wave and a new technological paradigm in the near future. This impact is determined by the growing need for the development of a number of areas in medicine, bio- and nanotechnology, artificial intelligence and others, which we denote as “MANBRIC convergence”. It is shown that the experience of dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic has confirmed that the final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution will begin in the 2030s at the intersection of a number of medical, bio, digital and several other technologies, with medical needs as an integrating link. Among the multitude of self-regulating systems in the economy and life (which, in our opinion, will flourish during the Cybernetic Revolution) socio-technical self-regulating systems (SSSs) will play a special role. Thus, COVID-19 becomes a powerful impetus not only in terms of accelerating technological development and approaching the final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution, but also in changing sociopolitical (and socio-administrative) relations in the forthcoming decades.


...
Acknowledgement

This research has been supported by the Russian Science Foundation (project No. 20-61-46004).

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2022.01.27
THE HEAD OF THE INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC FORUM INCLUDED LEONID E. GRININ AND ANTON L. GRININ INTO THE LIST OF 50 “FOREMOST GLOBAL THINKERS AND OPINION-MAKERS"

According to the World Economic Forum, Leonid E. Grinin and Anton L. Grinin are included in the list of 50 “foremost global thinkers and opinion-makers”. Their and other thinkers' interviews concerning the vision of the future world contributed to the new book "Great Narrative For a Better Future". The book is now widely discussed around the world, while the contributors received a personal gratitude from the chairman of the forum, who noted that the interviews became “a great inspiration to the book, making it intellectually rich and diverse”.







.....
About the Foundation

Russian Science Foundation was established on the initiative of the President of the Russian Federation to support basic research and development of leading research teams in different fields of science.


...

PROJECT CARD,
SUPPORTED BY THE RUSSIAN SCIENCE FOUNDATION

general information

Number: 20-61-46004

Name: World development and "limits of growth" in the 21st century: modeling and forecast

Supervisor: Viktor Antonovich Sadovnichy, Doctor of Physical and Mathematical Sciences

Financing organization, region: Federal State Budgetary Educational Institution of Higher Education "Lomonosov Moscow State University", Moscow

Years of implementation with the support of the RNF: 2020 - 2022

Contest: 2020 Contest "Conducting fundamental scientific research and exploratory scientific research on behalf (instructions) of the President of the Russian Federation" (leading scientists)

...
Annotation

Until recently, human civilization has developed along the path of mainly extensive development. In the second half of the twentieth century, the situation began to change dramatically. Thanks to the activities of the Club of Rome, the UN, and other organizations, it became clear that extensive economic development and consumer attitude to nature will inevitably lead to an environmental catastrophe, that scientific knowledge should be directed not only to improving the material aspects of human life, but also to ensuring the sustainability of socio-natural processes.
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The project aims to:
..

- Prepare a report to the Club of Rome outlining the Russian vision of achieving the sustainability of global development and overcoming the "limits of growth".

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Abstract of the results obtained in 2022
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The results of mathematical modeling have shown that humanity is currently moving to a fundamentally new phase of historical development, when the old economic and social technologies no longer work. There is a transition of human society into a new phase state, the shape of which has not yet been determined. In this situation, we are not talking about forecasting, but about designing the future in new historical conditions. The analysis of options for further world development is made. Based on the analysis and modeling results, a project of the future society with the conditional name "World-organism" is proposed, based on the primacy of the principles of cooperation over the principles of competition. If this project is implemented, as mathematical modeling shows, it is possible to solve global problems related to ecology, global warming, and energy. Based on the conducted research, an initiative report was prepared to the Rome Club, which was sent to the Club's management.

..
The developed methodological apparatus can be used in information and analytical systems of strategic planning and management in the Russian Federation.
...

(*The MSU Wikisystem is a digital space of Moscow University organized by the staff of the Faculty of Computational Mathematics and Cybernetics (VMK MSU) in the year of the faculty's 50th anniversary (2020).

Viktor Antonovich Sadovnichy
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Honorary titles: [...] Member of the Club of Rome (2000)”


....
Each of the last two rectors of Lomonosov Moscow State University was or is a full member of the Club of Rome.


..
"VI International Scientific Congress "Globalistics-2020"
From May 18 to 22, the first stage of the VI International Scientific Congress "Globalistics 2020: Global Problems and the Future of Humanity" is being held in an online format. It is traditionally organized by the Lomonosov Moscow State University, and such influential international organizations as UNESCO and the Club of Rome are its partners. This year the Congress will be held in three stages — in May, June-August and October.

All participants of the global expert panel were greeted by the Rector of Moscow University, Academician V.A. Sadovnichy."
 
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clammertoe

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What should I throw away? Putin's daughter? :)
(Because the last time, we talked about her...)
The robot waiter and robot cat thing. If I run into one, it's going over.
Then I will kick it.
It it cannot get up, it's useless.
I like watching the videos of people assaulting the robot things.
 

Lalas

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Joined
Nov 8, 2022
Messages
1,520
The robot waiter and robot cat thing. If I run into one, it's going over.
Then I will kick it.
It it cannot get up, it's useless.
I like watching the videos of people assaulting the robot things.
I agree 100%. Stupid robocat, suck it! :D
(As well as dumb genetic wizards, Putin's daughters, and everyone else.)
 

Lalas

Star
Joined
Nov 8, 2022
Messages
1,520


Presents unique long-term forecasts of global futures

Provides a new vision through a reassessment of global challenges

Includes recommendations for a transition to a favorable development trajectory



About this book
Echoing the famous "The Limits to Growth" report from 1972, this edited volume analyses the changes that the World System has undergone to the present, on the fiftieth anniversary of the original report. During the past fifty years, both the concept and understanding of these limits have significantly changed. This book highlights that the evolution of the World System has approached a new critical milestone, moving into a fundamentally new phase of historical development, when the old economic and social technologies no longer work as efficiently as before or even begin to function counterproductively, which leads the World System into a systemic crisis.

The book discusses the transition of human society to a new phase state, the shape of which has not yet been determined. New approaches are needed for both, for the analysis of the global situation, and for forecasts. The book is based on an integrated approach including the world-systems, historical and evolutionary perspectives, as well as a systematic view of society, in which changes in one subsystem cause transformations in others. Through mathematical modeling, it defines the main vectors of transformations of the World System; makes a detailed forecast of the development of all the main subsystems of the society and the World System, while presenting horizons of changes from short-term to ultra-long-term; and presents different development scenarios as well as recommendations on how to achieve a transition to the most favorable scenario.

The book will appeal to members and followers of the Club of Rome, policy-makers, as well as to scholars from various disciplines interested in a better understanding of the World System evolution, global futures, development studies, climate change, and future societies.



This chapter analyzes the current historical situation and the prospects for its further development. It is evident that drastic changes are currently taking place in the world, reflecting a phase transition in historical development, namely, the transition from the late industrial phase to the cybernetic phase, features of which are largely determined by the ongoing Cybernetic Revolution. One could also talk about a transition from an economically organized World System to a politically organized one. Sadovnichy et al. consider the most important features of the ongoing changes and their impact on various spheres of society’s life, taking into account various scenarios of the future global evolution. In particular, Sadovnichy et al. discuss the possible transition from a liberal market capitalist society to a model of society with an equal distribution (but still preserving private initiative and the spirit of enterprise). This global transition is facilitated by the limitation of extensive growth opportunities due to objective reasons.

Modern transition is also connected with the achievement of a high level of technological development, which objectively demands the transformation of social, political, and international relations to correspond to the level of technology. There are some contradictions with respect to technological development. On the one hand, the benefits of new technology implementation are significant for solving many modern problems in providing a higher quality of life, since for the first time in history, it is becoming possible to satisfy the material needs of the majority of the world’s population. On the other hand, the development of technological innovations leads to the formation of socio-technical self-regulating systems based on artificial intelligence, the introduction of which also carries with it serious risks, and their scale remains unknown. At the moment, the rate of demographic growth is declining, alleviating the problem of overpopulation of the Earth. However, the high-income countries and some of the low-income ones will experience depopulation, while on the contrary, in most Sub-Saharan African countries, fast population growth will continue for a few decades. Therefore, the optimization of demographic processes is an extremely important task. It is very important that the development of medical technologies leads to an increase in life expectancy, as well as to a change in the demographic structure of society, i.e., to global aging, which is leading to changing social and labor force structure. Therefore, ensuring the quality of life of the aging population will present a critical problem. Aging at the same time gradually reduces the acuteness of material problems and their role in motivating people’s activities, while at the same time increasing the role of ideological factors.

In this regard, it makes sense to talk about the formation of a new type of society (cybernetic W-society), since the ongoing phase transition will affect all the foundations of life and the organization of society. The transition to a new model of society is inevitably interconnected with global political transformations, involving the formation of a new world order in which new principles of interaction between states will appear with a gradual rejection of competitive confrontation in favor of mutually beneficial cooperation.

The chapter is devoted to the analysis of climate change issues and the transition to renewable energy sources. The features of the current climate situation are associated with a general increase in the average global temperature as a result of an extremely high concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere, the amount of which is increasing and posing a threat to the stability of the global ecological system as a whole.

Taking into consideration the fact that the main share of CO2 emissions is accounted for by energy consumption (which experienced over the entire timeline of history transitions from one type of energy resources to another—from biomass to coal, from coal to oil, and from oil to natural gas), Akaev and Davydova analyze the possibilities of transitioning to renewable energy sources (RES) forecasted to take place by the second half of the twenty-first century. They carry out mathematical modeling of this transition with various scenarios for the future of the fuel and energy balance in the twenty-first century. For this, Akaev and Davydova have developed a specialized mathematical model that takes into account current trends in energy consumption based on the data from the largest energy companies and international organizations in the energy sector, such as BP, Equinor, Shell, International Energy Agency (IEA), International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), and others. Three scenarios for the increase in the average global temperature of the surface atmosphere in the twenty-first century are proposed: the conservative scenario, the ambitious scenario, and the Net Zero scenario.

The conservative scenario assumes that government policies, technologies, and social preferences continue to evolve in the same way as in the recent past.

The ambitious scenario envisages the introduction of measures leading to a significant reduction in carbon emissions from energy use, which in turn makes it possible to limit the increase in global temperature in the twenty-first century.

The Net Zero scenario, which the authors consider the optimal one, assumes that the measures proposed in the ambitious scenario are complemented and reinforced by significant changes in the behavior and preferences of society. The chapter details modern energy-efficient technologies and methods of using renewable energy sources, the implementation of which is envisaged in the framework of the optimal Net Zero scenario.


Natalia Kovaleva

In this chapter, Kovaleva analyzes the modern ecological situation, characterized by an imbalance in the circulation of matter and energy, reduction of the area of the active functioning of the biosphere and biodiversity. Biosphere parameters are approaching acceptable limits of changes, the transition through which entails a loss of system stability and its destruction. Humankind, as thousands of years ago, obtains almost all food as a result of the use of soil energy in agriculture and animal husbandry. These circumstances are forcing many countries to expand the plowing of land by reducing the area of forests, meadows, and pastures. Meanwhile, the share of arable soils on the planet and the productivity of biocenoses are declining. Replacing natural ecosystems with anthropogenic ones leads to the openness of the cycles of elements, primarily biophilic ones—carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus—and the removal of elements from biological cycles, which in turn reduces the stability of the biosphere as a whole. Urbanization, which implies a loss of highly fertile agricultural land, deforestation, and a significant reduction in biological diversity, seriously impacts global ecology. In this chapter, Kovaleva considers the problems of negative anthropogenic impact both within the framework of the global crisis and within the framework of local crisis conditions. She analyzes the experience of implementing global and local measures aimed at the minimization or elimination of anthropogenic damage to the environment, as well as available theoretical and methodological scientific research from various countries aimed at solving the identified problems.

Kovaleva outlines priorities in resolving those problems in the framework of developing a science-based strategy for sustainable development and suggests measures to improve the environment and rehabilitate contaminated territories.
The author maintains that the next few decades will be of decisive importance for the formation and implementation of a new global agenda aimed at ensuring the survival of humankind.

The present chapter analyzes one of the most important factors in world development—the dynamics of global demographic growth, which demonstrates that the fears of uncontrolled population growth expressed in the framework of the report to the Club of Rome “Limits to Growth” were partially justified and were typical for the period before the 1980s. However, statistical evidence after more than half a century demonstrates that the situation has changed, and in the 1960s and early 1970s, there was a peak of global demographic growth, after which a slowdown began. According to the UN forecasts, by the end of this century, there will be a stabilization of the population of the Earth. The chapter provides an explanation for the change in the dynamics of the global demographic transition—most of economically high-income states and a significant part of developing countries have moved to the second phase of the demographic transition, in which the birth rate falls to a level corresponding to a simple replacement of generations or below that level. At the same time, a new problem has arisen associated with a decline in fertility to the “lowest-low” level—a tendency formed to the negative natural population change in many countries, which is sometimes compensated by migration processes.

Along with that, the process of population aging is developing in many countries of the world, with an increase in life expectancy (LE) alongside low fertility. The indicated trends in the stabilization of the world population occur unevenly, with a fairly significant number of countries (mainly the countries of Tropical Africa) in which the second phase started not long ago, and fertility rates are still very high. At the same time, there is an acceleration of urbanization of the population in many developing countries. The chapter also notes the mutual influence of demographic processes and developments in various spheres of society and provides scenarios for their possible subsequent evolution, highlighting as a possible optimum scenario the one in which the stabilization of the Earth’s population will reduce the degree of negative anthropogenic impact on the environment, but a significant global depopulation will also be avoided.

Given the unevenness of demographic processes, different approaches to stabilization have been noted: stimulating birth rate in countries with the lowest-low fertility
and accelerating fertility transition in the countries with very high birth rates.

This chapter analyzes the process of global population aging, which has a significant impact on all areas of public life in the twenty-first century. Already today, in almost two dozen countries of the world, 20% of the population is over 65 years old. According to the WHO, the 60+ age group in the world already exceeds the number of children under 5 years of age. At the same time, by 2050 the number of 65+ will exceed the number of adolescents and young people aged 15–24. The influence of the population aging process on various areas of social activity will be determined by its scale and depth, i.e. by the possible demographic structure of the future society. At the same time, the ability of modern society to cope with increasing risks associated with this process is problematic. Among the risks and problems associated with population aging, one finds economic slowdowns, pension crisis, problems of care for the growing numbers of disabled and frail people, maintaining the financial savings of the elderly, the issue of ageism, and the vulnerability of the elderly during periods of crisis and pandemics and consequently maintaining life expectancy as well as a stable democracy and even world order.

These risks and problems are of particular concern given that by the mid-twenty-first century, two-thirds of people over 65 will live in middle and low-income countries. Moreover, aging will affect even the currently poorest countries in sub-Saharan Africa with young populations. In view of this, the problem of social security and health care for the elderly is becoming increasingly acute and requires the adoption of proactive measures. The problem of population aging is given insufficient attention by such international organizations as the UN and WHO; in general, studies of this issue are limited in the public sphere as well as in scientific discourse.

However, even now the, global aging is an extremely important problem and, we suppose, it will become the most crucial problem in the future. So, insufficient attention to it is threatening societal tensions, crisis, and intergenerational conflicts as well as political and social instability. In the present chapter, we approach this process from the point of view of the transition from perceiving it as a problem to considering it as providing new opportunities associated with the presence of worldly wisdom and experience in a more mature and older generation. Today, concrete measures must be taken in different spheres, and special long-term programs must be adopted to create a higher health-related quality of life (HRQoL) for the older generation and to combat the widespread stereotype of the end of life and the feeling of doom.

Grinin et al. point out the importance of technologies, the development of which can be stimulated precisely by the process of global aging and the need to increase life expectancy. As a background for the forthcoming technological wave (which we denote as the Cybernetic Revolution), global aging may create an acute demand for labor-saving technologies, as well as give a powerful impulse in the field of medicine. Progress in the latter will help to extend the working age and improve health-related (biological) quality of life.

Leonid Grinin & Anton Grinin

This chapter examines technologies’ current and future development in the framework of the Cybernetic Revolution—the third of the largest production (or technological) revolutions after the Agrarian and Industrial ones. The Cybernetic Revolution is a fundamental transition from industrial production to the production of services and goods based on the widespread implementation of self-regulating systems, that is, systems that can function in the absence or with minimum involvement of people and independently make complex decisions. This transition has already started and will continue up to the 2070s. The Cybernetic Revolution began its active development in the 1950s and has now finished its modernization phase. At the moment, the key technologies are information and communication technology and artificial intelligence, whose role in society is gradually increasing, and they come with benefits and potential risks.

However, Grinin & Grinin assume that from the 2030s, the new—final—phase of the Cybernetic Revolution will start. Its major technological breakthroughs will lead to self-regulating systems’ formation and widespread implementation. So, Grinin & Grinin assume that new technologies will emerge. They forecast that it will be a set of technological spheres, and the MANBRIC complex/convergence is taking shape and will actively develop in the final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution (in the 2030s–2070s). The MANBRIC is an abbreviation formed from the initial letters of the seven breakthrough areas: Medicine-Additive-Nano-Bio-Robotics-Info-Cognitive technologies. These technological fields closely interact and corroborate each other and will continue to do so increasingly in the future.

Due to its specific characteristics, medicine will be an integral part of the MANBRIC complex. Grinin & Grinin also offer some scenarios for further technological development. They significantly depend on the areas where technological breakthroughs will start. The main developmental scenario is presented as a breakthrough that will occur in the 2030s in the field of medicine, especially at the nexus of its new directions and some areas of the MANBRIC. There will be the introduction of innovations based on self-regulating systems in various fields of social activity (economy, medicine, biology, and socio-administrative structures). Grinin & Grinin describe the most favorable scenario and recommend how to move toward this scenario.


The chapter examines the issues of mutual influence of technological and economic growth, the pace of which, after unprecedentedly high rates in the middle of the twentieth century, stabilized and began to slow down. Limited opportunities for extensive growth, a decrease in demand due to the stabilization of demographic growth, a worsening problem of inequality, the transfer of most industries to low-income countries, as well as an aggravation of the environmental problem, are identified as causes of this slowdown. These circumstances lead to the question of whether the current system of capitalist relations ceases to be relevant.

This chapter discusses the problems of future economic growth and available resources, its rates, as well as possibilities to transform capitalism, to support tendencies toward lessening of consumerism, and to move to a less stratified society. Grinin et al. emphasize that the problems of inequality, injustice, and overconsumption cannot be solved only through increasing regulation and redistribution, as is sometimes suggested. This is a way to create more contradictions and to split society (as we could see during the pandemic). Grinin et al. suggest that there are more complex but more effective ways through simultaneous use of regulations, development of innovative technologies, and keeping optimal rates of economic growth. Reducing social tension currently requires reducing wealth inequality and strengthening economic regulation, but these measures can suppress economic activity and extinguish economic growth. Without the personal initiative and personal interest of millions of people, the internal economic engine of society stalls; the common good cannot be created by redistribution alone.

The development of the economy in conjunction with a correct social policy (redistribution) is the only way to raise the standard of living. And regarding inequality, it should not be about trying to eliminate inequality in principle but only about how to smooth it out without destroying the driving forces of development and, at the same time, reducing social tensions. The task of society is to find ways to channel development in the direction of a course that is beneficial for it, to find the optimal combination between private initiative and social programs, and between the growth of production as an important characteristic of economic development (without increasing the burden on the environment) and consumption optimization.

In general, the authors' vision of economic development is that it is necessary to optimize it both in its pace and indicators and also take into account the need to more quickly pull growing economies closer to high-income ones. There are several factors, including the new technological wave—the Cybernetic Revolution—that are accelerating the development of third-world countries and providing conditions for world economic growth. At the same time, of course, the directions, sources, and centers of economic growth will change. So, the modern world economy has faced serious problems and limitations in growth opportunities, which has begun to slow down the growth of high-income and low-income countries.

However, Grinin et al. do not believe that the opportunities for economic growth have been exhausted. On the contrary, the new technologies of the Cybernetic Revolution in 2030–2040 can give an impetus to an increase in economic growth rates compared to current rates. The authors also assume that in connection with the global aging of the population, the model of consumption in society will also change, and consequently, the model of the economy itself will begin to transform.


Leonid Grinin, Anton Grinin & Sergey Malkov

Since the second half of the twentieth century, there have been radical changes in all spheres of life, which qualitatively distinguish the new phase of development from the previous ones. The chapter is devoted to the ongoing transformations in the social and political sphere, which include: the increasing digitalization of all spheres of life together with their positive and negative consequences, the change in the demographic structure of the population (including global aging), the development of global interactions, the increasing interdependence of the countries of the world, etc. The most important factor in these transformations is technological development, the Cybernetic Revolution unfolding before our eyes. These transformations lead to a serious restructuring of the social structure and sociopolitical changes.

Grinin et al. consider the shape of future society, which they call “Cybernetic W-society” in different areas: technological, demographic, economic, political and administrative, international relations, social, and environmental. They also consider different scenarios of future Cybernetic W-society. According to them, as a result of the completion of the Cybernetic Revolution and the achievement by the global aging of an advanced phase, a new society will be formed–Cybernetic W-society. It will be an elderly society, with the institutionalization of age differences, relying almost entirely on smart (cybernetic) technologies and AI-based self-regulating systems.

Grinin et al. also consider other scenarios and aspects of this society. They analyze two extreme alternatives which are not likely to be implemented in their pure forms but rather indicate the limits within which the actual trajectory of global evolution will proceed: (1) “new feudalism,” (2) “World-Organism.” The former alternative essentially involves the reincarnation of a totalitarian-type system in the cybernetic era, whereas the latter alternative is a society where, in the presence of a deep professional specialization of the population, there is no discrimination, management is carried out on the basis of network technologies (network technologies are used to “synchronize” collective action and to exercise direct democracy).

The second variant of development—“World-Organism”—is considered as favorable because it assumes cooperation, instead of competition, as a fundamental principle in development.

Grinin et al. also note that ideology, which is of a universal nature, is of great importance in an effective transition to the second developmental option, which allows overcoming the confrontation between representatives of different faiths, nationalities, and civilizations.

Grinin et al. point out that it would be preferable if we could move to a future society that is based on cooperation rather than competition and, at the same time, preserves the privacy, individuality, and initiative of its citizens.


Leonid Grinin, Anton Grinin & Andrey Korotayev

In the chapter, Grinin et al. give the outline of a new world order whose emergence will be caused by a new technological wave (the final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution), aggravation of global problems (shortage of resources, demographic disproportions, climate change, and so on), and constant transformation of international relations. The chapter deals with issues of changing world order in the current period of global transformations. This period is called the reconfiguration of the World System.

Grinin et al. offer short-term, medium-term, and long-term forecasts for the development of the world order, which are based on the assumption that the change in the world order is an inevitable process that happens when former leaders lose their positions. For a new world order to emerge, the balance of power must change significantly. The process of weakening the U.S. hegemony has been continuing for more than two decades. The U.S. position will be further weakening. So, the modern world order will undergo transformations too, until in the middle of the twenty-first century a new world order emerges in its main features. The World System directions of development, the global problems, necessity to avoid military conflicts, as well as the aspiration for progress require a stable balance of forces and interests, as well as a coordination of the activities of international actors, i.e., new principles of the world order.

Grinin et al. formulate such principles. However, the authors note that the transition to a new more efficient world order will not be smooth, it will be accompanied by crises, tensions, conflicts, and disturbances, which implies a high degree of uncertainty. Along with this, Grinin et al. emphasize the importance of changing the balance of power for the formation of a more just order based on cooperation, which is facilitated by the active growth of low-income countries (especially in Africa), and the necessity to direct this development to the right track.

Finally, Grinin et al. analyze various scenarios of political changes and the establishment of a new world.


[ :D ]

Leonid Grinin & Andrey Korotayev

Grinin and Korotayev’s main approach in this chapter is formulated in its title “Africa—the Continent of the Future. Challenges and Opportunities.” And it is really so. Africa is the most rapidly growing continent, and its growth (demographic, economic, cultural, etc.) will inevitably influence the World System (and the further, the stronger). The growth of African societies will bring at the same time both challenges and opportunities. Grinin and Korotayev discuss both of them in detail.

Grinin and Korotayev consider Africa as the main intrigue of demographic transformations in the twenty-first century. But they also think that this continent can constitute a very important intrigue in other respects (economic, political, ethnical etc.). No doubt, in the future, African countries will produce many surprises both positive and negative. Grinin and Korotayev suppose that, with respect to the humankind’s future development, Africa will be a great source of both problems and their solutions. For example, the problem of surplus labor force will continue to be acute in Africa. But on the other hand, in the context of declining birth rates in most of regions of the planet, these are African labor resources that can partially help solve the problem of labor shortages in high income countries.

The growth of the African economy should be inevitable already in connection with the growth of the population, especially urban one, and its escape from extreme poverty. On the one hand, African growth could greatly influence ecology (especially in agrarian sector). But on the other hand, the future African growth can become an increasingly important source of global growth, which is close to its exhaustion. Besides, this growth is able to partially solve the problem of the shortage of many resources, at least for some significant time. Much will also depend on how deeply, systematically and quickly the green energy transition will develop. For its implementation, in addition to a host of technological and other restraining problems, an important limiting factor is the shortage of many metals and components (like silicon) necessary for green energy, electric vehicles and other equipment. Some countries of Africa are rich in resources that are in great demand in the modern electronics industry and green energy; in addition, one cannot but mention the reserves of rare earth metals. The need for these minerals can activate foreign capital and accelerate the industrial development of Africa, which will undoubtedly affect the decline in fertility, as well as the growth of interest in Africa among the leading geopolitical and economic players with all the pros and cons of their active penetration to this continent.

Therefore, the world community faces an important task of trying to use the African resources as efficiently as possible to solve global problems, with the maximum benefit for the Africans themselves. Grinin and Korotayev also discuss problems of current and future instability in many African countries, connected with rapid growth, modernization, weakness of statehood and national historical experience, traditions, and so on. So in some sense Grinin and Korotayev expect that the twenty-first century will be the African century.


This chapter presents the results of the application of the set of basic models outlined in chapter “Modeling Social Self-Organization and Historical Dynamics. A General Approach” (Akaev et al., 2023, this volume) to model the current historical situation and to forecast its further development. Akaev et al. show that the modern historical period is a period of transition from the “epoch of growth,” which followed the industrial revolution of the early nineteenth century, to the “era of deceleration,” one of the strongest indicators of which is a rapid decrease in the growth rate of the Earth's population and its aging. They perform the analysis of the ongoing changes in all spheres of life. Akaev et al show the uniqueness of the ongoing changes and consider alternative options for further development.

Leonid Grinin & Anton Grinin

Leonid Grinin and Anton Grinin look at the forthcoming decades up to the late twenty-first century, focusing on two important processes of development. The first of them is technological changes connected with a new technological wave or, in the authors’ terms, the final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution. This technological revolution will result in the widespread introduction of self-regulating systems. The second one is the process of global aging, which will influence more and more all spheres and relations in future society.

As a result of the two processes, a society will emerge, which Leonid Grinin and Anton Grinin call “cybernetic society” because its formation will be inextricably linked with the completion of the Cybernetic Revolution and its consequences. It will be society, which will have fundamentally new characteristics, and consequently, it will be very different from all previous societies. On the one hand, it will be closely connected with very deep technological changes in the management and regulation of our life at all levels. On the other hand, it is inextricably linked with the process of global aging because aging becomes an integral part of society.

As it develops and the institutions adapt to it, no sphere of society will remain unchanged, including technology, economy, consumption, social sphere, ideology, etc. In short, cybernetic society is an elderly society with the institutionalization of age differences, relying almost entirely on smart (cybernetic) technologies and self-regulating systems. Accordingly, this society will have its strengths and weaknesses, successes, and even triumphs, but it will not be free from some serious problems.

Cybernetic society must go through a difficult path of social frictions, conflicts, and optimizations before many things become institutionalized. Techno-social regulation has important advantages, but it also includes violence against the will and freedom of people. Therefore, a long way is required to optimize regulations to consider a variety of needs, desires, and problems. Even short-term regulation with the help of technology during the COVID-19 pandemic has shown how painful it could be for societies.


Conclusion: Reconsidering the Limits – Suggestions (Come On!).

This concluding chapter provides summary of main ideas expressed in the previous chapters of the present report to the Club of Rome, which are:

(1) population growth has ceased to be the main cause of many other global problems; the issue has shifted to other dimensions and requires optimization of demographic processes, rather than general limitation of population growth;

(2) modern political system is obviously in a transitional period to a fundamentally new condition based on new principles, that will allow to overcome major contradictions between countries and regions and find new solutions to global problems;

(3) the problem of resource depletion could be to a very considerable extent solved through the development and diffusion of fundamentally new technologies, through the movement toward resource and energy saving in the framework of the ongoing Cybernetic Revolution, which is associated with the saving of resources and labor;

(4) aging of the global population now becomes one of the most important issues of the world development and requires special attention to minimize the emergent problems and at the same time utilizing advantages of increasing life expectancy;

(5) the problem of inequality both within countries and between them requires a stronger social policy and a general restructuring of socio-economic relations in combination with measures preserving the potential for economic growth;

(6) technological progress together with global aging will lead societies to a new societal type – cybernetic W-society, characterized by its reliance on AI-based smart (cybernetic) technologies and self-regulating systems, as well as the institutionalization of age differences;

(7) a transition to a new global socio-economic system (“world-organism”) is expected, from the modern system, from competing states to a more coordinated global management, and, in the long term, to a closer association based on cooperative principles and aimed at solving common problems, a move to a more solidary society;

(8) the inevitable transformation of the current social system requires critical reflection on the previous experience, taking into account the best achievements of the past, which could be realized with the help of media.

Thus, generally speaking, this report’s key message is that the time of historical bifurcations is coming, and we need to prepare for it to make the future more beneficial to us and humanity as a whole.



Part of the book series: World-Systems Evolution and Global Futures (WSEGF)

 
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Moscow State University (MSU), news

20/05/2021
MSU Scientists Have Learned to Read Minds

As part of the activities of the Brain Research School, MSU scientists spoke about the results of an experiment to solve the problem of recognizing words and sentences, which will actually allow you to "read the mind" of a person in the future. The work was published in the journal Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures Meeting.

Inner speech recognition is a promising technology that could be used in the development of brain-computer interfaces and significantly help those suffering from neurodegenerative diseases. Research in this area is in its early stages and has practical value, which makes it relevant. It is known that internal pronunciation can be reconstructed from the electroencephalogram data, since it allows the specific activity associated with this process to be recorded.

The purpose of this work is to construct and implement an algorithm for extracting features and classifying Russian phonemes from an electroencephalogram recorded during the internal pronunciation of phonemes. Such studies are actively conducted abroad, but at the moment there is no information about similar works for phonemes of the Russian language in open sources. In the course of the work, an algorithm for extracting features and classifying the internal pronunciation of Russian phonemes was built and tested, the accuracy of which showed results comparable to other studies.

"In this work, we conducted experiments on the classification of Russian phonemes in internal pronunciation based on electroencephalogram (EEG) data and obtained results comparable to the results in foreign studies. A number of conclusions have been drawn on how best to collect, process and analyse this type of data. The main result is the demonstrated ability to recognize the phonemes of the Russian language from EEG data. This is a step towards solving the problem of recognizing words and sentences, which will actually allow you to "read the mind" of a person. However, this can be achieved by improving the algorithms for cleaning data from unnecessary artifacts and using additional sources of information, such as electromyography," said Evgeny Ilyushin, a specialist at the Department of Information Security at the Faculty of Computer Science of Moscow State University.

The methods of probability theory, mathematical statistics, wavelet analysis and machine learning theory were used in the work. The work is of considerable practical value, since the problem of classifying Russian phonemes has not been solved before and there is not much information on this topic. In their work, the MSU scientists described the design of the experiment and all the steps that were taken to achieve the result, which will be useful to other researchers in this field. The vector of further development of the project and the main problems in the current approach were also outlined.

"At the moment, the results of the work cannot be used in practice, but of course, the ultimate goal is to create a full-fledged device that could help people with speech disorders. If such a device were created, people would be able to interact with computers with their thoughts, which is especially important for certain diseases. To create such a device, it is necessary to improve the method of data collection, that is, to place a larger number of electrodes in the area of interest, as well as to improve the processing algorithms. Another problem with building such a device is write artifacts. For example, if a person moves or even blinks, the recording is greatly affected and phoneme classification becomes impossible. The solution to this problem can be the simultaneous collection of data from several different devices," added Evgeny Ilyushin.


Sociostudies.org
OUR PARTNERS (among them):
Faculty of Global Processes, Lomonosov Moscow State University

Eurasian Center for Big History & System Forecasting - President Leonid E. Grinin; Vice-President Andrey V. Korotayev;
Affiliates: [...]Strategic Public Movement "Russia 2045"






GLOBAL TECHNOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES IN THE LIGHT OF CYBERNETIC REVOLUTION AND THEORY OF LONG CYCLES

Authors: Grinin, Leonid; Grinin, Anton L.


...
Biochips represent a new trend of combining medical and nanobiotechnologies. Biochips are able to register a wide range of physiological changes and respond to them or perform specific actions. In the long term, biochips will permit a continuous control of a person's health. There are many biochips in medicine today. For example, cardio-chips which are connected to the heart cells, register all necessary indices, and transmit them to devices. Some biochips are so small in size that can be placed into a cell or tiny spheres of lipids, liposomes. They can be used for different purposes, for example, for targeted drug delivery.

Artificial organs are the key to resolving the urgent lack of enough donor organs. In medicine scientists already use or work to design different artificial organs: skin, retina, trachea, vessels, heart, ear, eye, limbs, liver, lungs, pancreas, bladder, ovaries. This will definitely increase life expectancy and can have various consequences. The artificial womb, for example, can provide an opportunity to have children for people irrespective of age and, perhaps, even gender.

Artificial immune system is an autonomous intellectual system against diseases and pathogenic organisms. For example, a nanorobot can travel through the body and collect pathogenic organisms into a special module, where they are decomposed. Organic compounds are further used by human organism.

Gene therapy is an explosively developing sector. It is a powerful tool for correcting hereditary diseases as well as developing new abilities that an organism lacked before. In our view, the crucial breakthroughs in gene therapy will be made in the treatment of genetic disorders and sport medicine.

Neural interfaces are an interaction between brain and computer systems that can be realized via electrode contact with head skin or via electrodes implanted into the brain. The implementation of neural interfaces is already wide-spread. They have developed neural interfaces that allow prosthetic devices to be moved via brain signals. Today, scanning techniques have been developed that allow studying brain signals. This gives an opportunity to reproduce any brain response.

So the final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution...
...
А-Phase of the sixth K-wave: acceleration to enter the final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution

The sixth K-wave will probably begin approximately in the 2020s. Meanwhile the final phase of the Cybernetic Revolution has to begin later, at least, in the 2030–2040s.


* This research has been supported by the Russian Science Foundation (Project No 15-18-30063).


--

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Moscow State University (MSU), news

21/12/2023
Physicists and neurobiologists of Moscow State University have created artificial synapses


The collaboration of physicists and neurobiologists at Moscow State University has made it possible to create artificial synapses that respond to pulses of light similar to biological synapses and have short-term and long-term memory. The implementation of computing architectures based on such elements can bring us closer to the creation of energy-efficient artificial intelligence systems. The results of the work were published in the journal Opto-Electronic Science.

One of the main limitations for the development of artificial intelligence is the limited computational resources and their power consumption. The traditional von Neumann digital architecture, although it serves as the basis for many computer systems, faces limitations in processing speed and energy efficiency due to the separation of RAM and CPU. These limitations become especially critical when performing AI tasks that require constant access to memory.

The human brain, for all its complexity, has the outstanding energy efficiency of any intelligent system in existence, and consumes by some estimates only 20 watts. The efficiency of the human brain is achieved, among other things, due to the impulse mode of information transmission and the combined functionality of information processing and memory storage in neurons. Even a partial realization of its abilities in information processing devices could be a technological breakthrough for artificial intelligence systems.

Researchers from the Laboratory of Neuromorphic Photonics of Moscow State University, led by Professor of the Faculty of Physics Andrey Fedyanin, in collaboration with chemists and neurobiologists, demonstrated the biosimilar properties of optoelectric structures based on zinc oxide. The photoconductivity of these structures demonstrates an impulse type of response to a signal that closely resembles the behavior of biological synapses. This means that it can efficiently transmit and process information, similar to how neurons communicate with each other. A group of scientists managed to conduct a number of experiments that made it possible to create optoelectronic artificial synapses and demonstrate their neuromorphic properties.

This research became possible largely due to the established inter-faculty ties at Moscow State University and the assistance of the non-profit foundation for the development of science and education "INTELLECT".

"Have you heard the story of how a physicist, a neurophysiologist, an artificial intelligence specialist, and a chemist came together as a team? No, this wasn't the beginning of a new punchline, it was the beginning of our science saga, the results of which appeared on the cover of the journal Opto-Electronic Science. We are developing a new approach to artificial intelligence by creating bio-inspired artificial synapses that are activated by light and process pulse signals. In addition, we stumbled upon some surprising findings: these synapses induce feelings of depression (yes, even artificial synapses can be suppressed), tonic arousal, and delayed accelerated responses that occur when exposed to pulses of light intermittently. These synapses are like rock stars in the world of technology, they adapt and remember past stimuli like no one before them," says Igor Balashov, a PhD student at the Faculty of Physics.

One of the most intriguing aspects of this artificial synapse is its ability to remember. It has both short-term (STM) and long-term memory (LTM), which is very important for many cognitive tasks. LTM persists for a long time, making it a valuable solution for storing and reproducing information in neuromorphic systems.

Another notable feature of this artificial synapse is pair-pulse facilitation (PPF). This phenomenon, where the second impulse elicits a stronger response than the first, is an extremely important feature of neural systems and is of great importance for information processing and learning.

In addition, this artificial synapse retains the memory of previous exposures, which determines the properties of continuous learning and adaptation. This ability to store and recall information acquired in the past allows it to adapt to changing conditions and improve its performance over time.

"Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this work is the discovery of spike frequency adaptation. This property, which is characteristic of biological neurons, allows the artificial synapse to adjust its response based on the frequency of incoming signals. This adaptation provides the additional level of complexity and variety needed to emulate the complex functioning of the human brain. Thus, an adaptive artificial synapse based on a nanocrystalline film of zinc oxide is a significant step towards the creation of neuromorphic computing systems that replicate the efficiency and adaptability of the human brain. Its ability to reproduce basic synaptic characteristics makes it a promising candidate for future neuromorphic chips and sensory systems," said Andrey Grunin, a researcher at the Laboratory of Neuromorphic Photonics at Moscow State University."


2023.12.18


Warmest congratulations to Leonid Grinin on the occasion of his Jubilee Birthday! Your fruitful professional activity and extensive experience in scientific work are deeply respected in the professional community. Please, accept our sincere wishes for good health and long life, new creative successes and good mood!"

2022.01.27

 
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Ministry of High Education and Science of the Russian Federation


Russia and India strengthen cooperation in science and technology

12.01.2023
International cooperation


Russian and Indian scientists, representatives of universities and relevant ministries took part in the 12th meeting of the Russian-Indian Working Group on Science and Technology, which was held online. The meeting was co-chaired by Alexander Tolparov, Director of the Department of International Cooperation of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation, and Sanjeev Kumar Varshni, Head of the International Cooperation Division of the Department of Science and Technology of the Ministry of Science and Technology of the Government of the Republic of India.

The participants of the working group discussed the implementation of the interdepartmental Roadmap for Russian-Indian cooperation in the field of science, technology and innovation, prepared by the decision of the previous meeting. The parties exchanged information on such promising areas of cooperation as biotechnology, artificial intelligence, quantum technologies, cyber-physical systems, oceanography, medical sciences, fundamental and applied physics.
...
The participants also emphasized the fruitful cooperation between Russia and India in multilateral formats: G20, BRICS, SCO. Interaction within the framework of these associations on many issues on the international agenda, including science, technology and innovation policy, allows Russia and India to actively promote joint priorities."


A team of scientists from Russia and Belarus was awarded the Union State Prize for the development of innovative DNA technologies

08.12.2023
International cooperation


A solemn ceremony of awarding the Union State Prize in the field of science and technology was held in Minsk. It is awarded to Belarusian and Russian scientists and specialists for outstanding results of joint work on the development of natural, technical and humanitarian sciences, as well as for the development of new equipment and technologies for the development of the economy of the Union State.

This year, the prize was awarded to the authors of the DNA Identification program:

Nikolay Yankovsky (Russia),
Svetlana Borinskaya (Russia),
Vadim Stepanov (Russia),
Alexander Kilchevsky (Russia),
Irme Mosse (Republic of Belarus)
Svetlana Kotova (Republic of Belarus).


They have developed a program of innovative genogeographic and genomic technologies for the identification of a person and individual characteristics of a person based on the study of the gene pools of the regions of the Union State.

The laureates' project consisted of two tracks: research in the field of medical genetics and research aimed at the development of forensics. It makes it possible to develop new methods for determining eye color, hair color, as well as a person's age with an accuracy of up to 4 years. In addition, genetic testing can identify a person's predisposition to cardiovascular, oncological and other diseases.


Konstantin Mogilevsky, Deputy Minister of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation, addressed the laureates with a welcoming speech.

"Today, the scientific and educational space of the Union State is strengthened by many strong ties, including the tradition of awarding this high award. It seems to me that this year's laureates' project encapsulates the main priorities of our current scientific agenda: it includes advanced genetic research, answers to security challenges, and, most importantly, interest in humans, who have always been and remain the measure of all things for science," said Konstantin Mogilevsky.

The ceremony was also attended by Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to Belarus Boris Gryzlov, President of the Kurchatov Institute Research Center Mikhail Kovalchuk, Vice-President of the Russian Academy of Sciences Vladislav Panchenko. The Belarusian side was represented by Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration of the Republic of Belarus Maxim Ryzhenkov, First Deputy Minister of Education of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Bakhanovich, Chairman of the State Committee on Science and Technology of the Republic of Belarus Sergei Shlychkov and others.

Recall that the nominees for the award were determined at a special meeting of the Expert Council chaired by the Minister of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation Valery Falkov and the Chairman of the State Committee on Science and Technology of the Republic of Belarus Sergey Shlychkov in 2022. According to the results of a secret ballot, three teams were recommended for awarding the prize, the laureates of which were determined by the Council of Ministers and the Supreme State Council of the Union State.

The Union State Prize in Science and Technology was established in 2018. The Expert Council is formed by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation, the State Committee on Science and Technology of the Republic of Belarus and the Standing Committee of the Union State. This year, the award is timed to coincide with the 24th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty on the Establishment of the Union State."


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Gazprombank Blog / Popular Science / The Future Is Here

22.12.2023, 5 hours ago

Reinvented Life: What Synthetic Biology Is About and How It Will Change the World

Recently, the Sc2.0 consortium (International Synthetic Yeast Genome [Sc2.0] consortium) announced an important discovery - the authoritative scientific journal Cell published an article about... simple baker's yeast. The peculiarity of the discovery is that half of the genome of the new version of yeast has never existed in nature before. It was created in a laboratory. The previous record was the creation of yeast with a quarter of synthetic genes. The achievement has brought scientists one step closer to obtaining a fundamental base that will allow them to build useful living organisms from scratch. This is what synthetic biology is doing, and it has a great future.

Synthetic biology is a young scientific discipline that is revolutionizing the production of medicines, food, biofuels, and other areas. In its essence, it resembles the computer industry, where engineers, using available components (processors, memory modules, storage devices, software, etc.), create different devices for specific tasks. In addition, biological engineers strive for the same thing, because it is great to have at their disposal bio-bricks that allow you to establish the production of previously non-existent organisms with unique and programmable properties.

Let's define the concepts right away. Synthetic biology is not synonymous with genetic engineering, but rather its development. Genetic engineering also makes it possible to obtain living organisms with new properties, but its method is different. Genetic engineers take a ready-made organism and manipulate its genetic code so that the organism has the desired properties. In genetic engineering, scientists work only with those biobricks that have already been created by nature. Synthetic biology creates these building blocks itself.

Synthetic biology also involves the direct involvement of molecular biologists, physicists, chemists, and engineers (conventional and computer) in the process. That is, if genetic engineering is about how to modify an organism with the help of technology, then synthetic biology is about how to assemble a team of the necessary specialists and a set of equipment to design a living organism from scratch and launch it into production.

Why do we need all this?

Synthetic biology has been successfully used in at least three areas for a long time: in the food industry, industrial production and medicine.
...
An example of a new food product created with the help of synthetic biology is a plant-based meat substitute from the famous company Impossible Foods.

She has created a product that contains a synthetic protein based on hemoglobin from soy roots. Genetically modified yeast creates heme, a complex organic compound (usually found in hemoglobin) that gives soy protein its meaty flavor and texture, as well as serving as a source of iron.


...
It [synthetic biology ] also helped Novartis create a vaccine against swine flu. To develop it, scientists from pharmaceutical companies used codon deoptimization, a "biosynthetic" method of weakening a live virus.

DNA and RNA-based vaccines are the next examples of vaccines produced through synthetic biology. RNA vaccines have become widely known thanks to the mRNA vaccine against Covid-19. For the research that led to the creation of this drug, scientists Katalin Carico and Drew Weissman recently received the Nobel Prize.




January 10, 2021
The Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Mikhail Mishustin approved the Program of fundamental scientific research for 2021-2030 with a funding volume of more than 2.1 trillion rubles. Genetic technologies prevail among medical areas, including the CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing method.

Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 3684-r dated 31.12.2020 "On the Program of Fundamental Scientific Research in the Russian Federation for the Long-term period (2021-2030)"

dated December 31, 2020 No. 3684-r
(As amended by the Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 966-r dated 21.04.2022)
...
Direction of science: 1.6. Biological sciences

Main scientific tasks and expected breakthrough results for 2021 - 2030
...
Molecular biology, molecular genetics and genomic research are aimed at studying the mechanisms of storage, transmission and realization of genetic information. Of particular importance are the establishment of molecular mechanisms of interaction of proteins and low-molecular bioregulators with DNA and RNA, as well as the disclosure of regulatory mechanisms of coordinated functioning of genes, leading to the appearance of certain features, and the study of post-transcriptional stages of expression of genetic information. Genome-wide studies will allow us to create new methods of diagnosis and therapy of the most common hereditary diseases. Great prospects are opening up in connection with the development of genomic editing, through which the production of modified organisms will be widely developed.
...
Research in the field of synthetic biology is aimed at creating technologies and tools for purposeful modification and construction of genomes in order to create organisms and their components containing biosynthetic pathways not found in nature. As a result of these works, it is planned to develop
approaches to the development of technologies for creating completely artificial living organisms in the future."
 
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Brain-computer interface (P300 BCI) game from Lomonosov Moscow State University (Russia)
1.06.2010
 
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December 14, 2023
General Meeting of the Russian Academy of Sciences: Achievements in Biology and Medicine


On December 13, the scientific session of the General Meeting of the Russian Academy of Sciences "The Russian Academy of Sciences in Solving the Problems of Scientific and Technological Development of the Russian Federation" continued. During the session, scientists discussed the main achievements of biological and medical sciences and the problems they face. Read more in our report.

....
Progress in Medicine

The next speaker was Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences Vladimir Ivanovich Starodubov, who spoke about the technological development of medicine. He noted that, according to the Concept of Technological Development of the Russian Federation for the period up to 2030, the country should have the necessary base for the production of medical equipment and medicines.
...
An important issue for medicine is the immunization of the population of the Russian Federation. Experts from the Medical Department of the Russian Academy of Sciences analyzed the National Vaccination Calendar and noted that there are no full-cycle production facilities for some vaccines in Russia. The country does not have its own vaccines for pneumococcus, chickenpox, rotavirus, meningococcus and HPV, although there are hopes that these drugs will be commercially available by 2025. According to Vladimir Ivanovich, the main problem for the entry of new drugs and vaccines into the Russian market is the phenomenon of the "valley of death" — the interval between development in a research laboratory and in production. As an example, he cited the inactivated polio vaccine PoliovacSin, which was created at the Chumakov Center in 2012-2015. In 2023 alone, the vaccine was mastered by production, and by the end of the year it is planned to supply up to 2 million doses of the vaccine, which in the future will be able to completely replace foreign products.

Further, Vladimir Ivanovich presented the generalized results of the work of scientists of the medical department of the Russian Academy of Sciences. He noted that now researchers are required to provide a product that can be used by citizens, and not only scientific articles and reports. In this report, we will consider the most important, in our opinion, achievements of scientists from the presented ones.
...

A consortium of the Scientific Center of Neurology and Bauman Moscow State Technical University has developed a brain-on-a-chip model for neurology and neuropharmacology. It can be used to test new ways to deliver drugs to the brain, as well as to find new molecular targets for pharmacological therapies for brain diseases. The availability of such a model will speed up preclinical drug trials.
...
New prostheses and implants are being actively developed. For example, the National Medical Research Center for Otorhinolaryngology of the Federal Medical and Biological Agency of Russia has developed an individualized outer ear implant. To create it, the 3D bioprinting method is used. And at the National Medical Research Center. The Research Institute of Complex Problems of Cardiovascular Diseases and the A.N. Bakulev Center for Cardiovascular Surgery create medical devices for surgical operations on the heart and blood vessels. Other institutes are developing new methods of orthopedics, and methods of conducting minimally invasive surgeries, including those on the brain, are being developed.
...
The principles of the medical department of the Russian Academy of Sciences are aimed at ensuring the accessibility of medical science for people. To achieve this, specialists strive to create a unified landscape of applied medical scientific research, compensate for gaps in the competencies of developers, remove barriers to the implementation of developments in clinical practice, and create an environment for interaction between developers and industry.


Prospects in the diagnosis and treatment of oncological diseases

Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences Andrey Dmitrievich Kaprin presented the National Medical Research Center of Radiology of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation and spoke about the methods of cancer diagnosis and treatment developed in Russia.

He started with nuclear medicine, which is part of the complex and combined treatment of cancer patients. The development and production of innovative radiopharmaceuticals is underway, but there are restrictions on the introduction of new technologies.
...
Nuclear pharmacies are being created in national medical research centers, in which up to 11 radiopharmaceuticals can be produced on order for specific patients.
...
Researchers from the Russian Scientific Center of Radiology and Surgical Technologies. A. M. Granova created the drug "Nanolute", which is a nanoantibody labeled with lutetium. This is the first clinical use of such a drug in the world.
...
The National Medical Research Center of Radiology is developing modern brachytherapy, in which a source of radio radiation is injected into the organ. This approach is especially relevant in the treatment of recurrent tumors after radiation and surgical treatment. Now Russia is the only country that can use brachytherapy, but only on the scale of small pharmacies and operating rooms, and not everywhere.
...
The National Medical Research Center of Radiology is also engaged in the development and improvement of proton therapy technologies, a type of radiation therapy. The Prometheus proton therapy complex was created at the Institute, which is located in a single copy in Obninsk. This apparatus is being improved at the expense of extra-budgetary funding, which is why development is slow. The Dukhov Research Institute of Automation is also creating a medical complex for neutron therapy. It is a high-dose generator of neurons, which has no analogues in the world yet.
...

Biotechnological developments in the field of cell therapy, CAR-T and NK cell therapy, the use of RNA and DNA vaccines and gene therapy are actively developing.
...
Sirius University of Science and Technology, the Gamaleya Research Center for Experimental Medicine, and the National Medical Research Center for Radiology of the Ministry of Health are jointly developing oncolytic vaccines based on mRNA. They allow mRNA to be delivered to cancer cells, from which proteins are synthesized that stimulate the immune response against the tumor. Together with the Center for High-Precision Editing and Genetic Technologies for Biomedicine of the Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University and the Engelhardt Institute of Molecular Biology at the National Medical Research Center of Radiology, preclinical studies of oncolytic viruses are also being conducted. And the N.N. Petrov National Medical Research Center of Oncology of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation is developing vaccines based on dendritic cells, which also make it possible to destroy tumor cells by activating the patient's own immune system.

Many approaches to cancer treatment are based on a case-by-case approach. The National Medical Research Center for Radiology is developing a bioinformatics system for personalized medicine. This system includes various databases that contain genomes, information about mutations, drugs, the effect of drugs on a particular type of cancer, etc. In the future, such a system will be able to select a treatment plan for patients using machine learning. The Almazov National Medical Research Centre has also created a prototype of an AI-based neural network algorithm for increased diagnostic accuracy of cervical cancer. It allows you to support medical decision-making.

The National Medical Research Center of Oncology of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation, as well as the Research Institute of Oncology of the Tomsk National Research Medical Center, are conducting research on molecular genetic technologies based on microRNA. Such technologies can be used both in the treatment and in the diagnosis of cancer. MicroRNAs circulate in the blood, and their analysis can be used to diagnose a tumor. And in the case of therapy, microRNAs are delivered to cancer cells, where they are able to suppress the activity of their genes.


The National Medical Research Center of Oncology is also conducting research on the treatment of stomach cancer using molecular genetic methods. This type of cancer is difficult to treat with conventional treatment. And with the help of genetic editing, in which homologous recombination of DNA occurs, it is possible to delete genes that are key to the development of stomach cancer.


Immunology, Genetics and Epigenetics to Ensure the Biosecurity of the Country


Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences Vasily Gennadievich Akimkin, representing the Central Research Institute of Epidemiology of Rospotrebnadzor, spoke about the methods of epidemiological protection of the country. The speech began with a quote from Vladimir Putin:
"In modern conditions, ensuring biological security is a very urgent task, the solution of which is impossible without combining the efforts of the entire international community. This has been fully confirmed by the coronavirus pandemic... It is obvious that effective counteraction to biological threats requires the closest cooperation between relevant government agencies, scientific and medical communities."

Viruses are a key threat to humanity, as the coronavirus pandemic has shown. This event taught people some important lessons. Thus, the risk of zoonotic infections that have passed to humans from animals has become obvious, because all known epidemics involving coronaviruses have proceeded according to this scenario. The development of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus and the emergence of several of its strains also made it possible to assess the important dynamics of the pandemic. Over time, the new strains became more contagious, but at the same time less virulent, that is, mortality from such infection decreased.

Due to the fact that future pandemics are inevitable, it is necessary to create technologies that will be able to reduce their negative impact on humanity in the period of time from the beginning of the epidemic to the development of specific vaccines. On this basis, the issue of creating "universal" vaccines that can strengthen innate immunity and provide general protection of the human population in the event of the emergence of new pathogens is also relevant. Innate immunity, unlike acquired immunity, provides a rapid, albeit non-specific, response of the body to infection. Innate immunity is the same in all people in terms of development mechanisms, and also ensures the formation of specific acquired and "trained" immunity. The latter refers to immunological memory – the ability of the body to "remember" a pathogen that it has already encountered. When encountering such a pathogen again, the "trained" immune system provides a stronger and more effective immune response. Accordingly, "trained" immunity can be used both to improve existing vaccines and to develop new ones. Such approaches, including the use of genetic technologies, are being developed both in Russia and abroad.

A new field in science is epigenetics, which looks at heritable changes in gene activity. Methods are being developed that can detect infection by changes in the activity of human genes in response to viral infection. At the same time, the gene response can include both specific and non-specific changes that indicate the very fact of infection. That is why an approach that takes into account epigenetic changes can help detect infection, including with infectious agents that have not been studied before.

As an example of such epigenetic changes, the features of the SARS-CoV-2 virus were cited. The coronavirus is able to change the "settings" of cells by briefly turning genes on and off through nucleotide modification, namely through methylation and demethylation of cytosine. At the same time, it is already possible to diagnose coronavirus infection by epigenetic changes, since a blood test can determine the level of gene methylation and their activity. Such technology has already been developed at the Vavilov Institute of General Genetics of the Russian Academy of Sciences.


One of the areas of epigenetics in the therapy of infectious diseases is the editing of the transcriptome — a set of mRNAs that are read from genes and subsequently either used for protein synthesis or perform regulatory functions. Unlike genome editing, transcriptome alteration is not heritable, which reduces possible risks, and is not prohibited. For example, it is possible to suppress specific genes that are used by the virus to reproduce. Inhibiting the virus from replicating gives time for the immune system to develop specific antibodies to fight it. In Russia, there are already studies that prove that the simultaneous suppression of several genes in a cell can prevent the virus from reproducing.

Epidemiological surveillance is important to prevent new pandemics and control the current situation. Rospotrebnadzor specialists have already launched large-scale work on sequencing and bioinformatics analysis of coronavirus genomes. This allows them to track changes in the properties of the virus and track both known and potentially new strains. As part of this project, a platform for downloading and analyzing data, displaying sequencing results, VGARus, was created. More than 150 organizations and 60 sequencing laboratories are involved in the project. More than 300,000 genomic sequences have already been uploaded to the platform, of which 190,000 are complete. In the future, experts plan to expand the spectrum of genomes to include pathogens and other infectious diseases.

To minimize the negative consequences of a new epidemic, it is important to diagnose quickly and in a timely manner. The Central Research Institute of Epidemiology of Rospotrebnadzor has proposed a schematic scheme for the development of a PCR kit for diagnosing new, that is, previously unknown pathogens of infectious diseases. At the same time, the entire development takes only four days, and all components for the PCR kit are fully implemented on the basis of the Central Research Institute of Epidemiology of Rospotrebnadzor. They can independently synthesize specific primers and PCR probes, as well as all the necessary enzymes.

Enzymes are the basis of all test systems based on DNA or RNA amplification. The Central Research Institute of Epidemiology of Rospotrebnadzor has a full-cycle production for five key enzymes and their modifications: Taq polymerase, revertase (MMLV), Bst polymerase, uracil-DNA glycosylase, proteinase K. All these enzymes are indispensable in molecular diagnostics. The production of enzymes in Russia provides the production of 300 to 900 thousand sets of reagents per year, while enzymes are comparable to imported analogues in terms of activity and much cheaper than them.

Within the framework of the Concept of Technological Development of the Country until 2030, the need to ensure technological sovereignty was voiced. The research and production complex of the Central Research Institute of Epidemiology of Rospotrebnadzor is able to provide it in the field of diagnostics. In addition to the production of test systems, the institute also produces various medical and biotechnological products. The results of the Institute's scientific developments are used in their daily work by more than 3 thousand clinical diagnostic laboratories, medical centers and state institutions. The Central Research Institute of Epidemiology has registered more than 200 reagent kits, including test systems for 120 human infectious diseases and 40 animal diseases. At the same time, the products of the institute are supplied to more than 40 countries of the world.


The Central Research Institute of Epidemiology is developing production that will be able to provide innovative technologies. An example is CRISPR/Cas, the "molecular scissors" for genome editing. By March 2024, it is planned to launch a semi-industrial production cycle of CRISPR/Cas protein preparations for research purposes and for the development of therapeutic and diagnostic drugs on the territory of the institute. The production of such proteins will meet the needs of the country's scientists and reduce the need to purchase them abroad.

In addition, the Central Research Institute of Epidemiology is already preparing diagnostic systems using CRISPR/Cas. The institute's researchers have developed a method for detecting single copies of DNA and RNA of human infectious pathogens. By March 2024, the institute also plans to introduce into production diagnostic test systems based on amplification combined with CRISPR/Cas detection. Such test systems will have high sensitivity and will not require the use of high-tech equipment.

Gene therapy technologies are also being developed on the basis of the Institute. Experts are now creating mouse models to study HIV infection. Subsequently, it is planned to study the effectiveness of gene therapy against HIV based on the CRISPR/Cas system on such animals.


At the end of the report, Akimkin stressed that immunology, genetics and epigenetics are the most important scientific areas that are able to solve the problems of the country's epidemiological safety. It is necessary to have experience in solving current problems to anticipate future threats and prepare to deal with them.


Biomedical Neurotechnologies for Brain Study and Disease Treatment

Vsevolod Belousov, Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, spoke about the progress in the development of biomedical neurotechnologies and presented the Federal Center for Brain and Neurotechnology of the Federal Medical and Biological Agency. He noted that brain research and the introduction of biomedical neurotechnologies is one of the main priorities of the FMBA. There is a biomedical cluster of the FMBA, whose activities are aimed, among other things, at the study of the brain and neurotechnologies.

Synthetic neurotechnologies are important for studying the mechanisms of a healthy brain and the development of diseases of the central nervous system. These technologies include biosensorics, chemo-, opto- and thermogenetics. Biosensors are proteins that are encoded in the body. They consist of two parts – signal and sensory. When the sensory part recognizes certain molecules in the cell, the signal is transmitted by fluorescence. The FMBA has developed biosensors for hydrogen peroxide, glutathione, NADH, hypochlorite, for pH level detection. With the help of these biosensors, scientists were able to investigate the role of these molecules in the development of ischemic stroke. To do this, genes encoding biosensors were delivered to the brains of mice using viral particles. Fiber-optic structures were also implanted in the skull to track the fluorescent signal. As a result, the researchers were able to observe different parts of the brain. For the first time, they recorded waves of acidosis (changes in pH towards acidification of the environment) that propagate from the stroke nucleus to the cortex of the affected hemisphere. These waves of acidosis have become a target for the search for neuroprotective drugs that can protect brain tissue from the effects of ischemia.

Biosensors make it possible to track the spatial and temporal dynamics of substances in cells. Chemogenetics, in turn, can control their concentration and further study the role of these substances in cells and tissues. As in the case of biosensors, genetic constructs are delivered to the brains of experimental animals. FMBA has developed a hydrogen peroxide chemogenerator based on yeast protein — D-amino acid oxidase. Using this approach, scientists have been able to investigate the role of oxidative stress in the development of neurodegenerative diseases. Using chemogenetic systems, drugs aimed at treating dementia, Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative diseases can be tested.

Optogenetics makes it possible to control the activity of neurons with the help of light-dependent proteins called photoreceptors from various microorganisms. A limitation of this technology is the immune response to a foreign protein in the animal's body. An alternative brain stimulation technology is thermogenetics. It is based on the use of heat-sensitive human ion channels, which was proposed by scientists from the Federal Center for Brain and Neurotechnology. Normally, these proteins are present in the endings of neurons in the human skin and allow them to feel heat and cold. Accordingly, by embedding these thermoreceptors into neurons in the brain, it is possible to control their activity using short pulses of an infrared laser or focused ultrasound.

A huge amount of information about diseases of the nervous system is provided by "omics" technologies: genomics, proteomics, transcriptomics, epigenomics, and so on. As part of such studies, genome sequencing is carried out, the genome methylation profile and the transcription profile of individual cells are determined. The goal of such studies is not only to understand the mechanism of disease development, but also to search for various markers that can be used to diagnose it, and molecular targets for therapy. Together with the Center for Strategic Planning of the FMBA, scientists analyzed the population of the Russian Federation using multiomics technologies and were able to identify genetic, epigenetic and transcriptomic features associated with Alzheimer's disease for such a sample.

In recent decades, methods for diagnosing brain diseases using neuroimaging and nuclear medicine have been developed. The Federal Center for Brain and Neurotechnology has a radionuclide diagnostics unit, which is equipped with a PET-MRI machine. It allows you to visualize the structures of the brain and its blood supply with high resolution. In close cooperation with Rosatom State Corporation, scientists are developing radionuclide drugs for PET diagnostics of brain diseases, including cancer and Alzheimer's disease. In the future, researchers will be able to study the effects of short-lived isotopes at synchrotron facilities within the first 10-15 minutes of obtaining such drugs.

In addition to radionuclides, it is necessary to create a basis for obtaining other drugs based on small molecules, proteins, and so on. FMBA has implemented technological platforms that make it possible to quickly obtain universal components for the production of various drugs. For example, FMBA has created technological platforms for the production of drugs from recombinant proteins, peptides, oligonucleotides, and so on. In 2021, the research and production complex of the Federal Center for Brain and Neurotechnology was opened, which operates three platforms for the development and production of gene therapy drugs, monoclonal antibodies and cell drugs. Currently, the FMBA is completing the development of its own gene therapy drug for the treatment of spinal muscular atrophy, and the first stem cell-based cell drug for the treatment of spinal injury has been created. For the latter, preclinical studies have already been completed and clinical trials are beginning.

Together with the Lopukhin Federal Research and Clinical Center for Physical and Chemical Medicine, researchers are working on the creation of neuroorganoids, which are models of the brain. To create them, the patient's skin cells are taken, which are reprogrammed into stem cells, and then into the brain. Neuroorganoids can be used to study the molecular and cellular mechanisms of disease development, as well as to test drugs. Such organoids can also be used in brain tissue replacement therapy. Such organoids are indeed able to integrate with the patient's brain and form connections between neurons. However, the main problem of organoids is reproducibility and their maintenance of specified properties and architecture. Its solution is the development of specialized tissue-engineered structures, which are manufactured using bioprinting and biopolymer scaffolds.

Another technology is the use of focused ultrasound. Depending on its frequency, two effects can be achieved – thermal and mechanical. Thermal is used in neurosurgery in combination with MRI to thermally destroy tissues. For example, FMBA performed an operation using focused ultrasound to eliminate tremors in Alzheimer's disease. During the operation, the patient was conscious, did not require anesthesia, and the tremor went away right during the exposure. Immediately after the operation, the patient was able to return to normal life. The same method can be used to treat epilepsy and eliminate deep tumors. In cooperation with Rostec, FMBA is developing a robotic focused ultrasound system. Now preclinical tests of this device are being completed, after which it will be put into production. The mechanical effects caused by focused ultrasound allow the blood-brain barrier to be temporarily opened in any area of the brain. While the blood-brain barrier normally protects the brain from toxins and infections, it also acts as an obstacle to drugs. Hence, focused ultrasound facilitates the targeted delivery of drugs to the brain.

Modern neurotechnologies make it possible to provide rehabilitation for patients who have suffered from diseases of the nervous system. Computer systems are able to perceive signals that are given by a person, adjust to these parameters and show him the appropriate scenarios. Together with Skoltech, the scientists have developed a semi-immersive GRAIL MotekForce environment that improves walking function in more than 90% of patients. The researchers also created the VIBRAINT RehUP VR simulator, in which a person is immersed in a virtual environment using VR glasses. Such a simulator allows you to improve motor functions by more than a third.

FMBA researchers are also engaged in neuroprosthetics. This includes the development of brain-computer interfaces, which help to restore the lost functions of individual brain regions through external devices. Together with such partners as the LIFT Center, MISIS University, and St. Petersburg State University, FMBA scientists are solving the problem of neural implant rejection by creating soft implants. They are also developing neural interfaces that are able to perceive information from individual neurons rather than from large areas of the brain. The LIFT Center, together with the Federal Center for Brain and Neurotechnology, has developed hybrid microelectrode arrays that can receive signals from neuronal synapses. Based on such technologies, miniature neural implants will be developed in the future. In addition, such matrices will make it possible to study the interactions between individual synapses.



"Breakthrough achievements that ensure the national technological sovereignty of the Russian Federation in the field of neurotechnologies can only be achieved by ensuring interdisciplinary interaction of clinical and fundamental neurosciences with the exact, natural, engineering, and humanitarian sciences," Belousov concluded."
 
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Lalas

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Brain-Computer Interface Awaits President Medvedev

8.01.2010
A puzzle assembled by the "power of thought" in the news of Channel 1 of Russian TV on November 25, 2009 (21:00). The development was presented at an exhibition timed to coincide with the meeting of the Commission for Technical Development, which was held at Moscow State University by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev. At the heart of this development of the Human Brain Study Group (http://brain.bio.msu.ru/; Faculty of Biology of Lomonosov Moscow State University) is a high-performance brain-computer interface (BCI), created on the basis of the group's scientific research. The IMC puzzle was presented by the head of the group Prof. A.Y. Kaplan, members of the group, students Ivan Basyul and Ilya Ganin.

Note. In the voice-over:
"Science fiction is becoming a reality thanks to the development of biophysicists* at Moscow State University. Special sensors pick up brain impulses and convert them into computer commands."
- there is a small mistake: the IMC puzzle, controlled by the "power of thought", was developed not by biophysicists, but by physiologists (at the Department of Human and Animal Physiology of the Faculty of Biology).

You can read about the puzzle in our article:

A.Y.Kaplan, S.L.Shishkin, I.P.Ganin, I.A.Basyul, A.Y.Zhigalov. Adapting the P300-based brain-computer interface for gaming: a review. IEEE Transactions on Computational Intelligence and AI in Games (Special Issue on Brain/Neuronal-Computer Games Interfaces and Interaction), 2013, in press ( doi: 10.1109/TCIAIG.2012.2237517 ).

Adapting the P300-Based Brain–Computer Interface for Gaming: A Review

Alexander Y. Kaplan
Laboratory for Neurophysiology and Neuro-Computer Interfaces, Faculty of Biology, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia; Sergei L. Shishkin; Ilya P. Ganin; Ivan A. Basyul;

Abstract:
The P300-based brain-computer interface (P300 BCI) is currently a very popular topic in assistive technology development. However, only a few simple P300 BCI-based games have been designed so far. Here, we analyze the shortcomings of this BCI in gaming applications and show that solutions for overcoming them already exist, although these techniques are dispersed over several different games. Additionally, new approaches to improve the P300 BCI accuracy and flexibility are currently being proposed in the more general P300 BCI research. The P300 BCI, even in its current form, not only exhibits relatively high speed and accuracy, but also can be used without user training, after a short calibration. Taking these facts together, the broader use of the P300 BCI in BCI-controlled video games is recommended.

Published in: IEEE Transactions on Computational Intelligence and AI in Games ( Volume: 5, Issue: 2, June 2013)
 

Lalas

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The authorities of Yakutia are going to breed cloned mammoths

2021/04/05
The head of Yakutia, Aisen Nikolaev, predicted that scientists will be able to clone a mammoth and then they will inhabit the tundra, the press center of the republic told Lenta.ru.

"I am sure we will still see live mammoths walking on the Yakut tundra," the press service quoted him as saying.

According to Nikolaev, the pace of technological development and the emergence of new scientific discoveries suggest that it will be possible to revive the population of the ancient animal in the near future.

The region gives priority to the study of mammoth fauna and wants to make it a tourist and scientific brand of the republic. Mykolaiv also hopes to legalize mammoth bone mining in the country. "Now this is a big business, which, unfortunately, is in a gray zone," he explained, pointing out that this area can bring good money to the budgets of Russia and Yakutia, and a corresponding bill has already been submitted to the State Duma.

Earlier it became known that Swedish paleogeneticists recovered DNA from the remains of mammoths that lived in Russia about a million years ago. The obtained genomic data are considered to be the most ancient.



How to Empower the Brain
24.01.2022


Mikhail Lebedev

Doctor of Philosophy, Academic Supervisor of the Center for Bioelectric Interfaces at the Higher School of Economics, Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Neuroengineering, Duke University Medical Center, Durham

Mikhail Lebedev:
"People need to keep up with the advances in neural interfaces, if only because they will become consumers of all these advances, whether they want to or not. The first neural interfaces will be terribly expensive and do not work well, so only a limited number of users will receive them. But as this tool develops, it will become cheaper and more efficient, and in 20 years, it will surely happen. And in general, it is useful for anyone to know how the brain works, what processes exist in it. Especially considering that often a person has a very remote idea of how this organ works, preferring to rely on myths or views reminiscent of religious ones."

On October 16, 2014 at the office of the Russian Venture Company (RVC), an expert seminar "The Neuronet Roadmap" was held with the participation of Stephen Dunn, director of Starlab Neuroscience Research; Karen Casey, creator of the Global Mind Project; Randal A. Kuhne, CEO of the Science Foundation Carboncopies.org and the founder of NeuraLink Co.; Mikhail Lebedev, Senior Researcher An employee at the Neuroengineering Center of the Department of Neurobiology at Duke University Medical Center (M. Nicolelis Laboratory)...
...
Neurotechnologies affect the sphere of entertainment, the education system, approaches to the management of industry and trade. But the most important result of a scientific and technological breakthrough in the field of neuroscience is the achievement of a new quality in communications. The modern Internet transmits information and even semantics, but is powerless in transmitting emotions and the unconscious. The Neuronet is the next generation of the Internet, which will use neural interfaces to create new types of communication between people and machines. By linking hundreds or, in the future, even billions of intelligences into a neurocomputer network, it will be possible to achieve a synergistic effect in their joint work, since the brain has the property of plasticity.
...
The roadmap for the development of the Neuronet for the period from 2014 to 2040 is shown


BiometriNet (pre-Neuronet) (2014-2024)
The onset of the Neuronet (2025-2035)
Full-Fledged Neuronet (2035+)


 

Lalas

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December 20, 2023

The brain distributed the signals differently before real and imagined movement

Scientists have established how the activity of our brain during imaginary movement differs from its work during real action. It turned out that in both cases, a previous signal arises in the cerebral cortex, but in the case of an imaginary movement, it does not have a clear connection to a specific hemisphere. The obtained data can potentially be used in medical practice to create neurosimulators and monitor the restoration of neural networks in patients who have suffered a stroke. The results of the study, supported by a grant from the Presidential Program of the Russian Science Foundation (RSF), were published in the journal Cerebral Cortex.

Motor cortex activation during visuomotor transformations: evoked potentials during overt and imagined movements

Nikolay Syrov, Lev Yakovlev, Alexander Kaplan, Mikhail Lebedev

Russian Science Foundation
...
The data obtained can be used to create neurosimulators and monitor the recovery of neural networks in patients who have suffered a stroke," the report says.

This conclusion was reached by a group of Russian scientists led by Professor Mikhail Lebedev of Moscow State University during observations of the brain activity of seventeen young volunteers (with the support of a grant from the Russian Science Foundation - note by the press service). They had to keep their hands on a panel where two buttons were located and press one of them, or imagine that they pressed that button when it was illuminated. At that time, scientists observed the work of the muscles and brains of volunteers using electroencephalographs and electromyographs.



Photos with buttons with light bulbs inside, in response to the flash of which the subjects had to press a button. Source: Nikolay Syrov

These measurements revealed major differences in how the participants' brains changed when performing real and imagined actions. In particular, the researchers found that both increased the activity of the sensorimotor cortex of the volunteers' brains, but only when the button was actually pressed, this activity was concentrated predominantly in one of the hemispheres.

Specifically, before the volunteer pressed the button with his right hand, a cortex in the fronto-central areas of the brain in the left hemisphere was activated, with the level of activity and its duration reflecting how quickly the volunteer noticed the light signal. This was not the case with imaginary actions, in which excitation accumulated in different areas of the sensorimotor cortex, not just in the left or right hemisphere.

The researchers found that illuminating the "wrong" button also produced similar sets of signals in the volunteers' brains, despite the fact that they did not try to press the button or imagine that they pressed it. This suggests that when making decisions in the brain, visual information is first evaluated, and then a decision is made to block movement. Understanding this, neuroscientists hope, will allow the development of more effective methods of rehabilitation for stroke victims.



Evoked potentials associated with motion, sorted in order of increasing reaction rate. The picture indicates the relationship between the processes taking place in the sensorimotor cortex before movement and the speed of movement itself. Source: Nikolay Syrov

Rehabilitation after strokes

According to WHO statistics, about 15 million people have strokes every year, of which 5 million die, and another 5 million become disabled. In many cases, patients can avoid the latter scenario by undergoing a course of rehabilitation aimed at restoring connections between damaged regions of the brain and forming new chains of neurons bypassing these areas. Now scientists are actively developing similar approaches to restore the functioning of the brain of patients.


CARD OF THE FUNDAMENTAL AND EXPLORATORY SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH PROJECT,
SUPPORTED BY THE RUSSIAN SCIENCE FOUNDATION

Number: 21-75-30024

Title: Development of invasive and non-invasive corticospinal and peripheral interfaces, using biomarker monitoring, for neurorehabilitation of motor functions and pain control.


Supervisor: Kaplan Alexander Yakovlevich, Doctor of Biological Sciences

Former head: Lebedev Mikhail Albertovich, replacement date: 20.10.2022


Organization of financing, region: Autonomous Non-Profit Educational Organization of Higher Education "Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology", Moscow

Implementation period supported by RSF: 2021 - 2024

Competition No. 53 - 2021 Competition for the event "Research by World-Class Scientific Laboratories as Part of the Implementation of the Priorities of Scientific and Technological Development of the Russian Federation" of the Presidential Program of Research Projects Implemented by Leading Scientists, Including Young Scientists.

Field of Knowledge, Basic Classifier Code: 05 - Basic Research for Medicine, 05-106 - Neurobiology

Keywordsneurophysiology, brain-computer interface, neuroprosthetics, neurorehabilitation, neurostimulation, neuromodulation, spinal cord, brain, biomarkers, lipids, chronic pain, electroceutics, spinal cord injury.


Annotation
Millions of people around the world suffer from severe neurological disorders caused by diseases and injuries of the nervous system. Thus, according to the statistics of the World Health Organization, the number of people with spinal cord injuries increases annually by 500,000 people...
...
Neural interfaces are a rapidly developing field at the intersection of medicine, neuroscience, biology, engineering, robotics, physics, mathematics, and materials science, which aims to reproduce and supplement brain functions and correct these functions in cases of neurological lesions. Neural interfaces make it possible to read and decode the activity of nerve structures, as well as to influence them through neurostimulation. It is expected that neural interfaces will be implemented in various branches of medicine, where they will have a significant effect on approaches to treatment and rehabilitation. The expected economic effect of interface technologies is also extremely large.

Previous research and medical developments have already considered the use of neural interfaces and neurostimulation to treat neurological disorders, including disorders resulting from spinal cord and brain injuries, epilepsy, strokes, and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease. However, systems in which neural interfaces are combined with neurostimulation and molecular biomarkers require further development and study. The proposed project is dedicated to this task. The goal of the project is to develop and bring to practical application neural interfaces that record the activity of the cerebral cortex, decode it and use the decoded signals to control electrical stimulation of the spinal cord, cortical areas and peripheral nerves in order to restore limb mobility and reduce the level of neuropathic pain. A competent team of scientists will work on the project; Clinical trials will be conducted in leading Russian medical centers.

The project is designed for four years...
...
Expected Results
As a result of the project, invasive and non-invasive corticospinal and peripheral interfaces for neurorehabilitation of motor functions and pain control using biomarker monitoring will be developed for the first time, a system that combines neural interface technologies (based on motor imagination and P300) with transcutaneous stimulation of the spinal cord and peripheral nerve stimulation. Recommendations for combined neuromodulation (location of electrodes, frequency and duration of exposure, coordination of stimulation of different zones) will be developed. Algorithms for decoding EEG activity and its conversion into neurostimulation will be developed and optimized, algorithms for assistive robotic devices will be developed.

The results obtained will be used as soon as possible to expand the products of Motorika LLC, a developer company that produces rehabilitation products to improve the lives of people with disabilities. The implementation of the results of the Project in the form of functional technological solutions will allow, on the one hand, to cover a large part of the Russian market of medical prostheses and orthoses and, on the other hand, will allow manufacturers of final products to adapt the developed devices to the specific tasks of consumers based on the developed neurotechnologies.

Annotation of the results obtained in 2021
In this project, a neural interface integrated and synchronized with a robotic rehabilitation device and electrical stimulation of the spinal cord is being developed and tested. In the first year of the project, first of all, technical problems were solved to develop decoding algorithms, a robotic device for moving the arm, and the integration of a neural interface with spinal cord stimulation. These tasks have been accomplished...
...
Publishing

1. Amol P. Yadav, Shuanggyang Li, Max O. Krukoff, Mikhail A. Lebedev, Muhammad M. Abd-el-Barr, Miguel A. L. Nicolelis
Generating artificial sensations with spinal cord stimulation in primates and rodents (2021)









Abstract of results obtained in 2022 In 2022:
Work continued on the creation and study of neural interfaces that control neurostimulation parameters. A number of results have been obtained on the use of such neural interfaces in the clinic, as well as a number of fundamental scientific results.
...
In general, the developments and scientific results of this year have brought us closer to the clinical implementation of rehabilitation neuro-simulators based on the launch of neurostimulation through a neural interface. This approach is applicable to rehabilitation after stroke, spinal cord injury, and also as a method of suppressing pain syndromes.

Publications:





(and others)

Annotation of the results obtained in 2023
In 2023, the mechanisms of cortical sensorimotor integration with visually controlled and mentally reinforced limb movement were theoretically and experimentally investigated in order to develop neurointerfess rehabilitation technologies for patients after stroke and spinal cord injuries, as well as to create convenient and informative methods for diagnosing sensorimotor disorders due to stroke. On this basis, a new experimental regulation for monitoring the rehabilitation process has been created.

... In general, in a number of areas of the project, progress has been achieved at the level of clinical testing of rehabilitation technologies and neurodiagnostics of brain function disorders as a result of stroke and spinal cord injury. Also, this year's scientific results provided the basis for the development of new rehabilitation neuro-simulators and technologies for alleviating spasticity and pain syndromes, based on the launch of invasive and non-invasive types of neurostimulation through a neural interface.

Publishing:





(and others)


....
Supervisor: Kaplan Alexander Yakovlevich, Doctor of Biological Sciences



The mission of the 2045 initiative is the creation and realization of a new strategy for the development of humanity.


Speakers:
Dr. Alexander Kaplan
Brain-Machine Connector


Psychophysiologist, founder of first Russian BCI laboratory.

In 1973 graduated from the Department of Human Physiology at Faculty of Biology of Lomonosov Moscow State University. In 1976 he finished his postgraduated study at the same department and in the same year he was left at Moscow State University for research work. Since then, he emerged from research assistant to professor, head of the laboratory, the supervisor of 12 dissertations (Ph.D. projects), many national and international grants such as DAAD, RFBR, RHF, Skolkovo etc.

Ya. Kaplan is one of the leading experts in Russia and abroad in the area of the development of the brain-computer interface technologies: his first article in this area (published in 2005) was about the possibility of creating interfaces based on the unconscious part of the brain to communicate with the external environment. Progress in this area were due to including his developments in the field of human EEG analysis and it’s interpretation, as published in numerous articles in Russia and abroad. Original segmental approach to analysis of the EEG, developed by А. Ya. Kaplan, allowed him to generate a highly sensitive test system for psychopharmacology which led to the creation of new nootropic drug, appreciated as achievement in the area of science and technology in 2002 given as a prize by State Russian Federation Government.

At present, Prof. A.Ya. Kaplan works on the project of creation of the manipulators and robotic systems, controlled by EEG in his laboratories of neurocomputer interfaces at MSU and cognitive processes and interfaces in the National Science Center "Kurchatov Institute".


MARCH 12, 2013
OPEN LETTER TO UN SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON


An appeal by participants of the Second International Global Future 2045 Congress to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Mr. Secretary-General,

We, scientists, public figures and business leaders from Russia, the USA, the UK, and Canada as well as participants of the Second International Global Future 2045 Congress (15-16 June 2013, New York) would like to bring to your attention a number of serious issues.

The world stands on the threshold of global change. Ecological, political, anthropological, economic and other crises are intensifying. Wars are waged, resources wasted senselessly, and the planet is being polluted. Society is experiencing a crisis of goals and values, while science and technology are providing unprecedented opportunity for advancement. National leaders remain focused on short-term internal stability, without paying sufficient attention to the opportunities for the future of civilization.

Humanity essentially faces this choice: slide into the abyss of global degradation, or find and realize a new model of development, a model capable of changing human consciousness and giving new meaning to life.

We believe that to move to a new stage of human evolution, mankind vitally needs a scientific revolution coupled with significant spiritual changes, inseparably linked, supplementing and supporting of each other. The vector of future development provided by technological advancement should assist the evolution of the consciousness of humanity, the individual and society, and be the transition to neo-humanity.

This type of research will be discussed at the Global Future 2045 congress. Cutting-edge technologies will be showcased, many of which have already been developed and improved, but not yet available to the people who need them.


The key components of these studies are:

1. The construction of anthropomorphic avatar robots—artificial bodies.

2. The creation of telepresence robotic systems for long-distance control of avatars.

3. The development of brain–computer interfaces for direct mental control of an avatar.

Applications:

– rehabilitation of the disabled;

– replacement of people working in hazardous conditions, or those tasked with cleaning up during peacekeeping missions, etc.;

– telepresence technologies for personal and business communications, as well as tourism.

The successful further development of the above three studies is expected to lead to further breakthroughs, including:

4. Development of life-extension technologies involving life-support systems for the human brain integrated with an artificial Avatar body.

(Note: Per the Global Trends 2030 forecast of the US National Intelligence Council, using replacement limb technology advances, people may choose to enhance their physical selves as they do with cosmetic surgery today.)

Application: the significant extension of the lives of individuals whose biological bodies have exhausted their resources.

5. A study of the main principles of the functioning of the human brain, and the creation of a functional model.

6. Development of prostheses for parts of the human brain.

7. Creation of a fully artificial equivalent of the human brain.

8. A study of human consciousness and the possibilities for its future embodiment in a non-biological substrate.

Applications:

– treatment of degenerative diseases and traumas of the brain;

– exploration of regions of outer space hostile to biological human life;

– radical extension of human life to the point of immortality.

Participants of the Global Future 2045 congress include scientists, philosophers, representatives of different religions, public figures, business leaders, and philanthropists. We will demonstrate the realistic nature of Avatar technologies and launch a new science megaproject that will form the foundation of a new evolutionary strategy for humanity. This realization will make it possible to solve many of society’s problems once and for all, overcoming the biological limitations of humans, and creating a new civilization with high ethics, culture, spirituality, high technology and science.

This new strategy should become an alternative to nationally focused ideologies, transforming the inhabitants of our planet into citizens of Earth, and bringing nations together, making it the meaning of life for each citizen to serve high ideals and principles, and pursue constant self-development.

To carry out this important mission, your support is key for us. We invite you to take part in the congress personally, or send a recorded or written appeal to the participants.

We believe that in the near future, the UN General Assembly will gather not to regulate military conflicts, but to recommend that heads of state and leaders of national and transnational organizations take it upon themselves to realize the strategy for the transition to neo-humanity.



Signed by:

Dmitry Itskov — Founder of the 2045 Initiative. President of the Global Future 2045 congress.

Ray Kurzweil — Director of Engineering, Google; futurist and inventor, co-founder, Singularity University, and author of How to Create a Mind.

Dr. James Martin — British author and entrepreneur and the largest individual benefactor to the University of Oxford in its 900-year history.

Dr. Theodore Berger — USC Professor, brain prosthesis technology developer.

Dr. Peter H. Diamandis — Founder and Chairman, X Prize Foundation, co-founder, Singularity University, author of Abundance.

Dr. Robert Thurman — Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist studies at Columbia University. Author and tireless proponent of peace.

Dr. Amit Goswami — Professor Emeritus from the Theoretical Physics Department of the University of Oregon.

Dr. David Hanson — Robotics designer and researcher, creating androids: humanlike robots with intelligence and feelings.


Dr. Alexander Kaplan — Psychophysiologist, founder of the first Russian Brain-Computer Interface laboratory.

Dr. Ben Goertzel — Artificial General Intelligence researcher and entrepreneur. Founder, OpenCog Project. CEO, Novamente LLC.

Dr. Natasha Vita-More — Human enhancement theorist, university lecturer, co-editor The Transhumanist Reader on the philosophy of self-directed human evolution.

Dr. Randal Koene — Head of Carboncopies.org, author of the concept of Substrate-Independent Minds (SIM).

Dr. Anders Sandberg — Researcher, Future of Humanity Institute, and science debater, futurist, author of the Whole Brain Emulation Roadmap.

Dr. Stuart Hameroff — Neuro-anesthesiologist and professor at the University of Arizona. Co-creator of the Orch OR model of the quantum nature of consciousness and memory.

Dr. Ken Hayworth — President of the Brain Preservation Foundation, and Senior Scientist at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Janelia Farm Research Campus.

Dr. David Dubrovsky — Russian philosopher, psychologist and expert in the field of analytical philosophy of mind.

Dr. Witali L. Dunin-Barkowski — Head of the Russian project for reverse brain engineering. Professor. Founder of the Russian Association of Neuroinformatics.

Dr. Alexander Panov — Astrophysicist, author of the Snooks-Panovcurve which describes the singularity.

Dr. William Bushell — MIT-affiliated religious anthropologist.

Lazar Puhalo — Archbishop (ret.) of Ottawa of the Orthodox Church in America.

Swami Vishnudevananda Giri Ji Maharaj — Russian yoga master, philosopher, futurologist.

Rabbi Dr. Alan Brill — Cooperman/Ross Endowed Professor in Honor of Sister Rose Thering at Seton Hall University.

Nigel Ackland — Pioneering user of the world's most advanced bionic artificial arm."




7.03.2015
Global Future 2045 Congress: Towards a New Strategy for Human Evolution / New York City, 2013
http://gf2045.com/

Roundtable on Life-extension of the Brain in a Full-body Prosthesis with Biological Blood Substitutes and Brain-Computer Interfaces with Optional Neuroprostheses

Dr. Alexander Kaplan
Dr. Mikhail Lebedev

Dr. Theodore Berger
Dmitry Itskov

More http://www.gf2045.com/program/
The human brain is the last organ in the body to die. This happens because the organs—heart, kidneys, liver etc.—which enable the activity of the living brain malfunction. From this arises a purely medical situation where the life of the brain must be supported without the natural organs which carry out this function. Scientists have not yet determined the possible life expectancy of the brain under the condition where its biochemistry, nutrition and energy are supported at the optimum level by artificial systems using the latest technologies. However, the science and technology to solve this problem are ready today. Nerve cells have unique features compared with all the other cells of the human body: 10 times more genes are activated in them; they do not accumulate copying mistakes when multiplying; they live by close interaction with each other; and are capable of rearranging intercellular connections when damaged. All of this would allow them to live for a very long time, were it not for malfunctions in the working of other bodily organs.

Modern technologies already make it possible to replace any organ in the human body other than the brain, without adversely affecting its functions, and thus giving the brain itself the possibility of living for a long time. There are no serious fundamental restrictions to stop the nerve cells from existing in an artificial environment, for example for 5 to 10 times longer than they live, on average, in the human body. Modern achievements in neural science show that in terms of longevity, nerve cells can even overcome the species barrier, for example when they are transplanted from the brain of an animal of one species into the brain of an animal of another species which has a longer lifespan. The goal of the Russian project is to extend the lifespan of the brain by many times, and at the same time create highly advanced technologies for supporting the full existence of the brain and of the human personality beyond the lifespan of the biological organs of the human body, by means of a full-body prosthesis.

Key technologies in this project include: improving surgical equipment, creating biological blood substitutes with the necessary hormonal-biochemical and energetic substrate; development of multi-channel brain computer interfaces with two-way information exchange; and development of neural prostheses to repair structures of the brain itself that have malfunctioned.

This project is to be realized in collaboration with several US neuroscience laboratories, which have been highly successful in creating multi-channel systems to interface with the brain, and in the development of neural prostheses.
 
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A Phygital Lesson by Dmitry Chernyshenko
7.09.2023

On September 1st, Dimitry Chernyshenko gave a phygital lesson for schoolchildren and students at the Innopolis Lyceum in the Republic of Tatarstan as part of the "Share Your Knowledge" marathon organized by Russian society "Knowledge" (Znaniye). During the lesson, he talked about phygital sports and their impact on the harmonious development of individuals through the combination of traditional sports and esports.

The Deputy Prime Minister congratulated those that gathered on the Knowledge Day and emphasized the importance of innovation in modern education.

"Education plays a huge role in the formation of individuals, society, and the state. It lays the scientific, cultural, creative, and technological foundation and makes us a united nation. President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly stated that the education system should meet modern challenges. Many young people ask how to enter the world of the future - the phygital world," said Dmitry Chernyshenko.

He added that it is crucial today to strike a balance between the digital and physical.

"The principle of 'phygital' helps with that. It is not just about sports competitions but a new philosophy of life and personal development. The future belongs to innovative sports. According to research, 65% of the population in Russia plays video games, and phygital sports are associated with activities for the younger generation. The majority of Russians who have heard about phygital sports consider them real sports," the Deputy Prime Minister noted.

The world's first international event in an innovative format, the Games of the Future, will take place in Kazan next year.

"We will witness the sport of the future in a unique combination of the most dynamic sports disciplines and popular computer games. Participants and guests of the first Games will have a unique opportunity to become a part of history. I invite all young people to join our phygital movement!" Dimitry Chernyshenko announced to the lesson participants and spectators.

From February 21st to March 3rd, 2024, Kazan will host the international multisport tournament, Games of the Future. The participants will compete in 21 disciplines that combine the concept of "phygital" (physical+digital) and bring together traditional sports and esports."



Video address to participants and guests of the ceremony to count down to the start of the first international tournament, Games of the Future
April 29, 2023


President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Today is the start of the countdown to the first-ever international Games of the Future tournament, which is, without exaggeration, a unique event that has never been held before.

The Games of the Future will combine e-sports and conventional sports, video games, virtual and augmented reality tournaments, as well as traditional football, basketball, hockey and MMA matches, all on one platform.

They will once again demonstrate that a modern person, a person of the future, is a harmonious individual, fit both physically and intellectually. I am convinced that the Games of the Future will make this truth evident in its entirety.

We take pride in the fact that this tournament was born in Russia and that this exciting phygital sport, which is becoming increasingly popular, offers new opportunities, scope and prospects for our country.

I am aware that Russia’s initiative has drawn the attention of the professional community and fans of cyber competitions, classic sports and video games from many countries around the world. This can be seen from the popularity of the qualifying stages of the Games of the Future with the audiences and the sheer number of applications from many teams.

They represent different countries and continents but are one in what matters most:
sport is beyond politics and its purpose is to strengthen mutual understanding and friendship among nations and to serve humanism, prosperity and all the good things."
...

...
The inaugural cybersport Games of the Future in 2024 will consist of new disciplines using advanced technology, the digital environment and physical activity. The competitions are designed to use cutting-edge developments in cybersports, robotics, both augmented (AR) and virtual reality (VR), information technology (IT) and artificial intelligence (AI). The tournament offers $25 million in prize money.

As part of the preparations for the Games of the Future, Russia has organized a series of Phygital Games. The first Phygital Games were held on September 21-23, 2022, the second - from November 24 through December 10, 2022, the third - on February 5-11, and the fourth - on March 9-10. The 5th edition of the Phygital Games was hosted by Kazan on May 16-19."


November 15, 2023
A ceremony heralding that 100 days remain until the ‘Games of the Future’ has been held at Russia EXPO, which is taking place at the All-Russian Exhibition Center VDNKh in Moscow.
...
The event began with a video address by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who noted that the tournament works with Russia’s image as a country that is open to everything new and welcomes progress.



“The participants and guests of the Games of the Future will be able to see this for themselves when they come to Kazan: a city where different traditions and cultures develop and enrich each other. Russia understands very well the value of diversity, including in sport. Sport is so much more to us than just a test of strength and skill or the foundation of a healthy and active lifestyle. Sport is a symbol and an embodiment of justice, equality, and the human spirit – a way to promote understanding between countries and nations,” Putin said.

According to Russia’s president, the philosophy behind the Games of the Future is based on Olympic values. The new tournament already has participants from 50 countries on its roster, and this is just the beginning.

“There is no doubt that the upcoming games will resonate with millions of people and clearly demonstrate that harmonizing intellectual and physical perfection is one of the absolute priorities of the emerging multipolar world,” he said.


...
The audience at the ceremony also got to see the games’ main mascot, Mira the firebird. This is a bird made of light that represents a neural network guiding humans through the world of phygital sports. The organizers wanted to deliver an entirely new kind of mascot and decided to make it fully digital, Stolyarov explained.


“We’re creating an innovative tournament. It just didn’t feel right to voice this ambition and then present everyone with yet another stuffed animal, like a bear or a beaver. That would be the easiest thing to do, of course, but we want the firebird to exist fully in a dimension that’s different from the material world. It’s an image that’s even hard to capture on paper. It only exists in our virtual metaverse,” Stolyarov said.


...
Singer Yegor Krid, who plans to participate in the opening ceremony in Kazan, joked that a gamer’s ideal combination of cyber and traditional sports would be to play online games while sweating on a treadmill."


More for Yegor Krid (Egor Kreed):






Legal status of the Games of the Future, an international multi-sport tournament, formalised
The President signed Federal Law On the International Multi-Sport Tournament Games of the Future.

December 25, 2023

ST. PETERSBURG. Dec 26 (Interfax) - Russian President Vladimir Putin has invited the leaders of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries to the opening of the Innovative Games of the Future, which will be held in Kazan in 2024."

......
The best technology projects at the forum "Strong ideas for a New time" were presented to Vladimir Putin
June 29, 2023

The initiatives were presented by Dmitry Peskov, Director of the Young Professionals direction of the ASI, Special Representative of the President for Digital and Technological Development.
...
The project of the National Cyberphysical Platform "Den" [Berloga], the leader of which is Alexey Fedoseev,
is dedicated to the mass involvement of young people in scientific and technical creativity and education through a mobile game.
...
Dmitry Peskov stressed that the "Den" is "an attempt for the first time in the world to combine the physical and virtual world in the individual logic of a child's development."


Berloga



“Speaking at the TED conference in February 2005, Kurzweil predicted that by 2029 man would begin to merge with technology. And during a speech at the DEMO conference in Santa Clara (California) in October 2012, he talked about the future expansion of brain capabilities through cloud computing, that is, about the exocortex. In August 2013, the term Neuronet was voiced by Pavel Luksha, professor of the Moscow School of Management "Skolkovo" at the Foresight Fleet conducted by the Agency for Strategic Initiatives (ASI), as well as during presentations of the results of the foresight project "Education 2030"
...
On October 16, 2014 at the office of the Russian Venture Company (RVC), an expert seminar "The Neuronet Roadmap" was held with the participation of Stephen Dunn, director of Starlab Neuroscience Research; Karen Casey, creator of the Global Mind Project; Randal A. Kuhne, CEO of the Science Foundation Carboncopies.org and the founder of NeuraLink Co.; Mikhail Lebedev, Senior Researcher An employee at the Neuroengineering Center of the Department of Neurobiology at Duke University Medical Center (M. Nicolelis Laboratory); Evgeny Kuznetsov, Deputy General Director of RVC. The seminar was conducted by the co-founders of the Russian Neuronet Group Pavel Luksha and Timur Shchukin, as well as the head of the RVC Innovation Ecosystem Development Service Georgy Gogolev
...
The Neuronet is the next generation of the Internet, which will use neural interfaces to create new types of communication between people and machines. By linking hundreds or, in the future, even billions of intelligences into a neurocomputer network, it will be possible to achieve a synergistic effect in their joint work, since the brain has the property of plasticity.
...
From a technical point of view, the work of a Neuronet is as follows: electrodes are inserted into a person's head in the right places, which can both record the activity of neurons in the human brain and affect these neurons.
...
The roadmap for the development of the Neuronet for the period from 2014 to 2040 is shown

BiometriNet (pre-Neuronet) (2014-2024),
The onset of the Neuronet (2025-2035),
Full-Fledged Neuronet (2035+)
...
When Biometrinet becomes commonplace, the “Neuronet Offensive” will begin (2025-2035), during which communication protocols based on digital models of mental processes will be developed and approaches to organizing a “collective consciousness” capable of “brainstorming” and solving tasks that require the concerted efforts of many people will be found.


The next technological revolution will be associated with neurotechnologies and a radical increase in the productivity of mental labor due to the integration of the human brain and computing machines. The rapid development of this direction will begin after the decoding (mapping) of the brain is completed, by analogy with the biotechnological revolution that started after the decoding of the human genome.

The neural network will be the next stage in the development of the current Internet (Web 4.0), in which the interaction of participants (human— human, human—machine) will be carried out using new neurocomputer interfaces, in addition to traditional methods, and the computers themselves will become neuromorphic (similar to the brain) based on hybrid digital-analog architectures. The emergence of social neural networks and full-fledged hybrid human-machine intelligence is predicted.
...

The Neuronet Roadmap was approved by Protocol No. 1 of 02/28/2022 by absentee voting of the members of the Presidium of the Government Commission for Economic Modernization and Innovative Development of Russia.

Stages and terms of implementation of the first stage (2016-2018)
Second stage (2019-2025)
The third stage (2026-2035)

Directions of implementation of the action plan ("roadmap")
"Neuromedtechnics";
"Neuropharma";
"Neuroeducation";
"Neuro-entertainment and sports";
"Neurocommunications and marketing";
"NeuroAssistant"

4) "Neuro-entertainment and sports"

The segment of neuro-entertainment and sports can be divided into the following sub-segments, which are already developing:

entertainment (games, entertainment gadgets, systems of interaction with virtual and augmented reality); biometrics (the market of wearable electronic devices);

evaluation devices and training of cognitive abilities;

devices for monitoring and tracking potentially dangerous psychoemotional states in real time;

devices for self-determination (conducting selections based on objective predisposition data based on EEG;

assistance in identifying optimal areas of effort;

analysis of the level of involvement;

a platform for the interaction of products within all segment projects, exchange, storage, analysis and provision of data;

non-invasive autonomous systems for obtaining biometric data from the nervous system and other physiological data.

The product of 2035 will be a large-scale gaming platform that constantly interacts with the user. The platform will continuously monitor functional, psycho-emotional states, assess the cognitive background of the user's current activity. Based on the data obtained, non-invasive stimulation of users will be carried out to achieve the necessary conditions. The platform will work according to the game format, the format of permanent trainings."


 
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December 15, 2023
Let's watch the "Results of the Year" with the President on the big street screens of Moscow!


On December 14, Russian President Vladimir Putin summed up the results of the year during a large press conference, which this year is combined with the Direct Line.

The broadcast of key quotes from the President of Russia has been launched on large-format street screens in Moscow. Throughout the day, Muscovites and guests of the capital were able to see them in real time not only on all media facades, but also on digital supersites.





in Moscow can be seen on 127 high-tech screens









On New Year's Eve, Russians will see fireworks — it will be digital

It will be launched by artificial intelligence on huge media facades from December 30 to January 8

December 29, 2023

New Year's digital fireworks will be launched in Russian cities on New Year's Eve. The magic show, created with the help of artificial intelligence, will be seen by millions of Russians on huge media facades from December 30 to January 8.
...
Recall that on New Year's Eve - 2023/2024, the usual festive fireworks in Moscow will not thunder. Last year, the capital also refrained from holding New Year's fireworks in connection with the law "On silence". The decision was made after a vote in the Active Citizen, where about 300 thousand people expressed their opinion. Dozens of other regions of Russia did the same.





Residents of large Russian cities are already accustomed to learning about current events in real time right on the street, walking or driving by car. The new type of media quickly provides information on large digital surfaces, media facades, harmoniously inscribed in the architecture of Russian metropolises. ....
 

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Screening of the film "World 2052. To see the future"

Scientists at the National Research University Higher School of Economics do not predict the future, they shape it. The film is dedicated to scientific developments that will be able to change the world in the coming decades. HSE experts spoke about how the use of artificial intelligence and the introduction of digital technologies will affect the economy, medicine, the humanities, and people's daily lives. They also wonder: Will humanity be ready for such changes?
Come to the show and find out what language our brains speak, how to find a criminal by the genes of his relatives, and why 80 is the new 20.



27 Oct, 2023
HSE's film "World 2052. See the Future" and the IQ portal. HSE wins Commitment to Science Award


On October 26, the Zaryadye Concert Hall hosted a solemn ceremony of awarding the winners of the main national competition of science journalists, communicators and popularizers — the IX All-Russian Award "For Loyalty to Science" of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation. This year, two projects from HSE University received a high award.

The winner in the nomination "Special Prize for the Popularization of Domestic Developments", established by the Rostec State Corporation, was the documentary "World 2052. See the Future", filmed by HSE and RT.
...
Andrey Lavrov, Senior Director for Communications, Higher School of Economics
The creation of popular science projects and media is the work that has been consistently implemented by the PR block for several years now, based on the university's mission — creating opportunities for the development of science in our country. When we were making the film "World 2052. See the Future" together with the RT TV channel, the main task was to reflect not assumptions and variants of visionary forecasts about what the world of the future might look like, but real technologies based on the interdisciplinary research that the university is engaged in today. These studies are carried out within the framework of five strategic projects included in the Priority 2030 program. As for our popular science media IQ. HSE is a core project in the field of HSE science communications, which helps a large audience of people to better understand what science can and does on a daily basis, and helps scientists to talk about the important research and discoveries they are engaged in a simple but visual way.

The recognition of colleagues and the scientific community is very important and valuable for us. The promotion of science in Russia is an important contribution to our common future.






Screening of the film "World 2052. See the Future" was held as part of the FUNK Science Film Days 2023
02.11.2023






A film about science from the Higher School of Economics is included in the programme of the FUNK Science Film Days, and screenings are held in more than 40 cities across the country. This week, HSE experts are taking part in discussions at the Yesenin Library No. 186 in Moscow.

On November 20, the presentation of the film took place, followed by a discussion and a quiz for the audience. Students of IT departments of educational institutions of the South-Western District of Moscow gathered for the audition. The film was presented by Ksenia Bregadze, Head of the HSE Press Service, and Alexander Chulok, Director of the HSE ISSEK Centre for S&T Foresight, took part in the discussion.



Artificial Intelligence Journey 2023
..
Foresight-session "AI and the future of humanity"
Aleksandr Chulok
ISSEK HSE University
...

Alexander Chulok (2021):
..
" The upcoming changes will be associated not only with biotechnological capabilities (genome editing, rehabilitation interfaces, biocompatible materials, etc.), but also with a final change in the role of medicine, from post-factum treatment to disease prevention.

A number of experts believe that humanity is experiencing the latest pandemic: the vaccine was created in record time by historical standards, and the virus was deciphered in a few weeks, while until recently it would have taken years.
..
A person's digital footprint, read by AI from various sources — from social networks to scientific journals of the first quartile — will become a new resume when applying for a job, at least until progress in bioelectronic interfaces allows you to download knowledge in a couple of minutes, as in the movie "The Matrix".
..
Look at what Vasily Klyucharev is doing at the Higher School of Economics. The Russian neurointerface connecting the brain and the computer directly was presented at the exhibition "Russia looking to the future" in 2017. Musk is an apologist for this technology. He is generally an enthusiastic person, dreams of dying on Mars from old age.

I think the attitude to technology itself will change dramatically in the next 10 years. Generations will be updated, for the new ones — the Internet is not a miracle, and smart watches are not a gadget. It's all already part of their life as a shirt. It is not so important whether it will be embedded in the body or in clothes. Let's look at the history of mankind, it has always experimented. It is difficult to say how inevitable the cyborgization of man is, but his merging with technology is indeed inevitable. "

 
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About the project
At the beginning of the modern era, science became the main tool for studying and transforming the world around us. Today, without scientific research, it is difficult to imagine the process of creating technological innovations that not only determine the daily life of society, but are also designed to make our future more convenient, predictable and safer.


The Foundation of the Future project, which includes the exhibition of the same name in the Open Collection of the Polytechnic Museum and the "digital layer" of the exposition, is dedicated to modern fundamental research of Russian scientists, which is supported by the Russian Science Foundation, as well as how this research is related to the achievements of the past.

The main characters of the project are 12 scientists who represent various fields of science. Their account of the discoveries and developments underway in our country right now is complemented by stories about the scientific and technological heritage that made these discoveries possible to a certain extent. Today, unique exhibits that allow us to get in touch with the past are carefully stored in the funds of the Polytechnic Museum.

The Decade of Science and Technology, which started in 2022 in our country, provides an opportunity to present Russian science to a wide audience as a promising and inspiring field, and the profession of a scientist as a worthy choice of life trajectory. We are confident that fundamental research lays the foundation for the future of technology and that science in Russia can create this future right now.


Ekaterina Skorb

PhD in Chemistry, Director of the Research and Education Center for Infochemistry and Leading Professor at ITMO University

In addition to fundamental research in the field of infochemistry, Ekaterina Skorb's group develops and programs chemotronic devices that transmit signals to living structures. Scientists are developing both individual devices and technologies for creating soft, flexible chemotronics with specified functions.


About the future
Someday, materials with desired properties will be designed specifically for specific tasks. And the databases needed to do so are already being created. This is what a young field of science — infochemistry — is doing.

Infochemists apply computational methods, artificial intelligence, and robots to the sciences of matter and life. An important part of their work is the creation of methods for collecting and analyzing data. Such techniques help to understand how complex molecularly organized systems or smart materials work.

Infochemistry as a science originated not so long ago at Harvard. Our group became the third in the world to do it. The emergence of new fields in chemistry is nothing new. As a rule, this is due to the emergence of new technologies and the accumulation of knowledge. For example, supramolecular chemistry, which describes key-lock interactions, emerged in the 1970s, when there was enough knowledge about supramolecular interactions. The trend of this century is the use of new approaches and methods from IT.

Today, our group deals with both fundamental and applied problems. And if we talk about the first direction, then here we are working on the creation of methods for collecting, cleaning, processing and analyzing data. This knowledge helps us understand the behavior of complex systems and materials, including how to assemble these systems and implement them in areas ranging from biomedicine to agriculture and the food industry. When you understand how to set up interactions in a complex system to get a function, you can design smart materials that respond to external influences: capsules for smart drugs, membranes for separating different ions or molecules.

The applied direction of our work includes such tasks as, for example, programming various chemotronic devices. Chemotronic devices make it possible to transmit a computer signal directly to living systems. They usually consist of some kind of electronic component, such as a diode, memristor, or resistor. We have learned how to create "soft electronics" based on hydrogels, which, depending on the voltage, can be used as a resistor, as a memristor, and as a diode. Such electronics can even have the properties of living systems, that is, in a microscope, you will see how the structure will grow and transform, see the chemical reactions taking place in it.

Our project, supported by a grant from the Russian Science Foundation, is on programmable soft electronics. Now we are collecting a database on how the introduction of various substances into hydrogels affects their properties and are developing methods for calculating and modeling these properties. These databases can be used to create and program devices, for example, to monitor the growth of bacterial films, smart dressings, "labs on a chip" (used in medical rapid test systems, as well as for the analysis of environmental pollution).


CARD OF THE FUNDAMENTAL AND EXPLORATORY SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH PROJECT,
SUPPORTED BY THE RUSSIAN SCIENCE FOUNDATION


OVERVIEW

Number 21-13-00403

Title: Programmable Soft Electronics for Bionic Devices

Head: Ekaterina V. Skorb, D.Sc. in Chemistry

Implementation period supported by RSF: 2021 - 2023

Annotation

This project is aimed at both the production of flexible electronics devices for neuromorphic computing and the use of such devices in medicine and healthcare (artificial neuron, human-machine interface, etc.). A new paradigm of adaptive materials and ways of self-organization of such materials will be proposed, aimed at certain applications in soft electronics and biorecognition, which is a relevant strategic direction of science and technology in Russia and around the world.
...
This project brings together the applicants' broad expertise in semiconductor materials, phase-change materials, synthesis and characterization of colloidal systems, colloidal assembly, and the study of polymers that respond to external influences. The scientific novelty also lies in the use of machine learning algorithms to identify the necessary complex architectures and implement flexible devices based on their origin.

Thus, it is planned to create robotic platforms and use big data and artificial intelligence (AI) both for the development of specific functional materials and for the comparison of theoretical knowledge. The AI will be trained in predictive synthetic planning, and the web application that we will present on the online platform will be a useful resource to assist materials scientists and companies in their daily tasks of adaptive material design. Thus, the development of a set of domain-oriented digital methods and technologies that ensure the automation of the technological chain for the creation of functional materials and systems based on AI methods.

Creation of intelligent digital engineering technologies that ensure the receipt and reproduction of breakthrough subject results: for new functional materials; for a new generation of multifunctional flexible electrical devices; to identify and manage the biochemical states of living organisms. The results of this project will have a significant impact on several industries.

Thus, intelligent flexible devices that can be created using the proposed approach can be used in a wide range of areas, in particular, in the development of wearable electronics for health monitoring.



Annotation of the results obtained in 2021
Currently, polyelectrolytes and supramolecular assemblies play an important role in the development of new materials. Their use makes it possible to create new properties of materials and surfaces and change them in a wide range. For polyelectrolytes, modern methods are divided into three areas: layer-by-layer deposition process, free films, polyelectrolyte-based hydrogels (Macromol. Biosci. 2021, 2100117). In this project, hydrogels based on polyelectrolytes and supramolecular assemblies are in focus to create programmable materials, flexible electrical components.
...


Annotation of the results obtained in 2022
These days, the importance of soft-material electronics is growing rapidly. Due to its outstanding properties (such as flexibility and extensibility), this type of electrical components can find potential applications for creating portable and wearable electronics, biocompatible devices. Particular attention is drawn to hydrogels doped with various chemical compounds, supramolecular assemblies based on hydrogels, liquid alloys as potential electrical components, with the ability to switch between them.
..

One of the works after answering the reviewers, now in the publishing house, was an approach to the periodic formation of polyelectrolyte complexes by means of a hierarchical organization of the Lisegang type. Adjusting the reaction conditions allows you to collect materials with configurable spatio-temporal geometry and set material production cycles with variable frequency. The proposed technique allows the membrane to self-assemble in an effort to achieve balance and to self-heal after exposure to external stimuli, such as potential differences and high pH. Chronopotentiometry was used to demonstrate the permeability behavior for K+ ions of coacervate membranes.

Intermittently self-assembling coacervate membranes can be further integrated into new energy storage devices and smart biocompatible membranes for bionics, soft nanorobots, biosensors, and biocomputers. The article is reviewed in the journal of the first quartile Q1.
...


Annotation of the results obtained in 2023

In today's world, the importance of electronics based on soft materials is growing rapidly. Due to their outstanding characteristics such as flexibility and extensibility, these types of electrical components could find potential applications in the development of portable and wearable devices, as well as in the creation of biocompatible devices. Particular attention is drawn to hydrogels enriched with various chemical compounds, supramolecular assemblies based on hydrogels, as well as liquid alloys as potential electrical components with the ability to switch between them.

This year, 3 articles were published on the project in Q1 journals:


"The bigger picture
Biological systems are organized in space and time through the interaction of biochemical reactions, diffusion, self-assembly, and phase separation. Interconnections between these processes make living systems non-linear and non-modular (holistic). There is a growing interest in obtaining synthetic materials that are organized through the same principles as living matter. However, the holistic character of biological cells makes synthesis of these materials a challenging task.

Here, we studied interplay between liquid-liquid phase separation and autocatalytic reactions. We designed systems where chemical autocatalysis is coupled to complex coacervation and the formation of oil-in-water droplets. Autocatalytic kinetics regulates the sequential formation of oil and coacervate phases that leads to hierarchical colloids. We envision that colloids with desired structures and functions will be obtained by designing reaction networks that regulate their assembly from constituting components."





...
Possibility of practical use of the results
The results of the research project in the field of flexible electronics and soft materials have the potential for practical use in the economy and social sphere, especially in the context of the formation of scientific and technological groundwork that ensures economic growth and social development of the Russian Federation.

First, the development of smart materials based on polyelectrolyte gels and their interaction with liquid electrodes can lead to the creation of new products or improvements in the existing ones. These materials can be used in a variety of industries, such as electronics, medicine, aviation, and automotive, as well as in the production of smart devices and sensors. For example, the development of devices with nonlinear responses to external stimuli could lead to the creation of new flexible electronic devices with advanced functionality, which could be used in the production of electronics and medical devices.

Secondly, research in the field of flexible electronics can contribute to the creation of new technologies or the improvement of existing ones. For example, the use of self-assembly techniques to create electrodes and polyelectrolytes, as well as the control of swelling and circuit rearrangement, could lead to the development of more efficient and cost-effective technologies for the production of flexible electronic devices. This can contribute to the development of innovative production processes and increase the competitiveness of Russian technology companies. The results of the project can be practically used to create new biosensors based on aptamers in agriculture and control pesticide residues, which will help improve product quality and ensure safety for the health of consumers. In addition, the development of stimulus-recall materials in soft robotics and microrobotics can be used in medicine and other fields to create more efficient robots.

In addition, the results of research can be used to create new products and services based on innovative materials and technologies. For example, the development of smart materials inspired by life can lead to new products in the field of wearable electronics, medical devices and sensors, which can contribute to the development of new industries and the creation of new market segments.

Thus, the results of the research project have the potential to form scientific and technological groundwork that ensures economic growth and social development of the Russian Federation, as well as to create new or improve the products and technologies used."
 
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Quasi-movements and brain-computer devices were discussed at the discussion platform "Science in Publications"

October 23, 2023
Is it better to control brain-computer interfaces with imaginary movements or quasi-movements? It was discussed on October 16 at the discussion platform "Science in Publications: From Idea to Practice".



We invite adults and seniors to a paid working memory test

December 27, 2023
Scientists from the Higher School of Economics are conducting a study of neuronal networks of working memory in adults (18-35 years old) and elderly (over 60 years old). The main goal of the study is to discover the neuronal networks of working memory and trace their lifelong changes that occur with age, which can lead to cognitive decline.


Belarus has registered its own vaccine against COVID-19

MINSK, December 29, 2023. The Ministry of Health of Belarus announced the creation and registration of a domestic vaccine for the medical prevention of COVID-19.
...
In Belarus, during the pandemic, they were vaccinated with the Russian drug Sputnik V, Sputnik Light, as well as the Chinese vaccine Vero Cell.


Temporary order of work of medical institutions for the prevention of COVID-19 extended for a year

MOSCOW, December 29, 2023. The Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation has extended the temporary procedure for organizing the work of medical institutions in order to prevent and reduce the risks of the spread of coronavirus infection until January 1, 2025.

The corresponding order of the ministry was published on the official Internet portal of legal information.

"The words "until January 1, 2024" should be replaced by the words "until January 1, 2025," the document says.

The order comes into force on December 31 of this year.


And the whole world plans: the main events of 2023
Key moments of the outgoing year in photos



The first-ever symphonic concert written using artificial intelligence was held on the sidelines of the VIII Eastern Economic Forum


VDNH hosted the main cultural event of the year, the Russia Exhibition and Forum, which has already been visited by over 3 million people

The cost of labeling products with insects can be passed on to consumers
Leonov: Costs of labeling products with insects may fall on consumers

December 29, 2023
According to the current legislation, product labeling must contain complete information about the composition of the product, its nutritional value, recommendations and restrictions on its use. This was announced on December 29 to Izvestia by Dmitry Leonov, Deputy Chairman of the Board of the Rusprodsoyuz Association.

Earlier in the day, RIA Novosti wrote that Rospotrebnadzor supported the proposal of Oleg Leonov, a deputy from the New People party, to additionally inform consumers in a visual form on products obtained using insects.

"Highlighting this information on the label can come with additional costs for businesses and can ultimately be passed on to consumers. From time to time, there are initiatives on the market to produce, for example, insect meal, but we have not yet seen such products on the store shelves," Leonov said.

Also on December 29, Mikhail Lavrov, Associate Professor of the Department of Financial, Economic and Business Education of the Faculty of Economics of the State University of Education, said in an interview with Izvestia that this initiative, despite its seeming unusualness, fits well into the global trend of using insects in food production.


In 2024, Russia will start investing more in generative AI


26.12.2023
In Russia, several plans for the development of the gaming industry are being prepared at once

The Organization for the Development of the Video Game Industry (RVI) has developed a five-year plan to support and develop Russian game development. As stated, the economic goal of the roadmap is to achieve the growth of the video game industry to 0.4%-0.5% of Russia's GDP by 2029.

As noted in the text of the letter prepared by the Ministry of Economic Development (RG got acquainted with it), the map was drawn up in accordance with the December instruction of the President to develop measures to support the domestic video game industry.

As follows from the roadmap itself, the Development Strategy is divided into 4 blocks: "System Support Elements", "Export", "Education" and "Technologies".

The developers explain that the roadmap was the result of two years of work that began after a discussion about the future of the industry at the Russian Internet Forum in the spring of 2022. They suggest focusing on the experience of South Korea, Japan, and Canada, where the video game industry has become one of the largest technology sectors of the economy.


28.12.2023
In three years, Russian physicists will create equipment in Zelenograd for the development of a domestic technological chain for the production of microelectronics. This was reported by TASS with reference to the director of the Budker Institute of Nuclear Physics (INP) SB RAS Pavel Logachev.

VELIKY NOVGOROD, December 27, 2023. A resident of the Valdai ISTC will develop the software for the control system of a highly functional prosthetic hand for heavy-duty use. This was reported to TASS by the press service of the Novgorod State University named after Yaroslav the Wise.
Funding will be provided to five residents of the Novgorod State University platform – the Valdai ISTC. The demand and commercial prospects of the product in the market, its advantages over competitors were evaluated. The amount of each grant will be 500 thousand rubles.

Techbionic will spend money on the development of software for the control system of a highly functional prosthetic arm for heavy-duty use.

"We are developing a prosthesis for special operating conditions, including for participants in a special military operation," explained Stanislav Muravyov, General Director of Techbionic. "These are mostly young people, increased physical activity is important to them. For the prosthesis, it is necessary to create special software that would take into account the operation of the control system under various loads, running, and driving. This grant will allow us to create a modernized ready-made durable prosthesis that will fully meet the needs of young active people with upper limb amputations.




 
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Sber's initiative to create a BRICS climate council was supported at COP28

Top manager of Sberbank Zavyalova:
work within the framework of BRICS leads to sustainable peace



December 13, 2023
International and domestic experts participating in the 28th UN Climate Change Conference (COP28) supported the creation of a permanent structure to consolidate the BRICS climate agenda. This was stated by Tatyana Zavyalova, Senior Vice President for ESG at Sberbank.

Participants of the panel session "How to Close the Climate Finance Gap: New Approaches and Mechanisms", held as part of the thematic Day of Responsible Finance of the business program of the Russian pavilion at COP28, noted that a more balanced and pragmatic approach to solving climate problems is being formed in the world. It provides new opportunities for international cooperation and synergy.

The participants of the business programme of the Russian pavilion demonstrated that the agencies, business, scientific and expert community of Russia, as well as other BRICS countries, are ready to work to reduce the energy intensity of the economy, while maintaining energy security and giving priority to solving environmental and social problems.

According to Ilya Torosov, First Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, over the past 3 years, Russia has moved from goal-setting to the creation of its own infrastructure in the climate agenda.

"A pilot project for the transition to carbon neutrality on Sakhalin is being successfully implemented, where the latest solutions are being tested, which can be used throughout the country in the future. Carbon markets have been created, and a green taxonomy has been developed," Torosov said.

The experts of the discussion agreed that the BRICS countries need a permanent platform for dialogue, development of joint decisions and consolidation of a common position on the climate agenda in the international arena.

Tatyana Zavyalova noted that climate finance issues are in the spotlight at the COP28 conference.
"Several high-profile statements have already been made about the allocation of funds, the UAE Declaration on the Global Climate Finance System has been adopted, and the creation of new funds has been announced. In Russia, as in other countries, regulatory and financial mechanisms for the climate agenda are also being formed," said the top manager of Sberbank.

She called it important to have a request for international cooperation and readiness for it.


"We understand how much cooperation and proposed initiatives within the framework of BRICS will facilitate our common movement towards a more sustainable world," Zavyalova concluded.



Sber's Senior Vice President for ESG:
Climate Agenda Merges with Economic Agenda


On the main results of the COP28 Conference and sustainable development trends, in an interview with TASS with Tatyana Zavyalova


Tatyana

December 19, 2023
According to the World Economic Forum, from 2000 to 2019, damage from increased storms, floods and heat waves amounted to at least $2.86 trillion. That means climate change is costing humanity $16 million every hour, or $267,000 every minute. Therefore, one of the main trends of the 28th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28) held in Dubai, which is assessed by experts as one of the most difficult, was the search for financing within the framework of the fund to combat global climate challenges.

The main results of COP28 and sustainable development trends are discussed in an interview with Tatyana Zavyalova, Senior Vice President for ESG at Sberbank.

— Tatyana Vladimirovna, you were among the participants of the conference in Dubai. Tell us about your impressions.

— The main topics of COP28 are the search for the necessary resources to reduce the rate of warming, energy transition and adaptation, as well as effective technologies for adaptation to climate change. Funding issues were raised at almost all sessions. After all, COP is a platform where countries are trying to develop joint measures to combat the global climate crisis, the threat of which, despite all previous agreements, is increasingly felt. And the key problem, in my opinion, is mainly the systematic failure of developed countries to fulfill the commitment made 14 years ago in Copenhagen to allocate $100 billion annually to developing countries to compensate for the effects of climate change. There is still no transparent scheme for the distribution of this obligation, no regulated control over its use. One of the achievements of this COP is a controversial and therefore temporary solution – to form a climate loss and damage fund. Why is the decision controversial? Because it is also not supported by any rules for the distribution of budgets, order and control. Obviously, the debate and tension on this issue remains, but COP28 showed a clear shift from a scientific and activist discussion around climate to a focus on financial, economic and business challenges related to climate change. On the topic of climate change, everything is much clearer. Major Western economies are pushing for a decision to abandon fossil fuels, which is why a historic agreement was adopted at the summit to switch from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources. The main substantive contradiction of the document lies in the goal-setting proposed by the UN. According to it, any fossil fuel is subject to a ban (gradually, but still a ban), while developing countries rightly suggest focusing on reducing the anthropogenic impact in general. COP28 came up with a soft formulation that generally suited everyone: a gradual transition away from fossil fuels, which assumes fair and socially responsible scenarios, and does not set hard deadlines. There are many critics of this decision at both poles, but nevertheless it is the first consensus in which the developed Western countries have heard the position of the developing part of the world.

— In your opinion, what are the main results of the conference specifically for Russia?

— From Russia's point of view, in my opinion, the adoption of the first report on the Global Inventory of the Implementation of the Goals of the Paris Agreement was important. The document notes that the goals should be achieved in compliance with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capacities for different countries. The same approach was reflected in the final agreement at the end of the conference, which is fully consistent with the position of the Russian Federation.

And, of course, a lot of discussions were held around the climate positions of the BRICS countries, of which our country is a member. Today, BRICS are the top five emerging economies with a combined population of 3.23 billion people, or more than 40% of the world's population. The alliance accounts for 31.5% of global GDP at purchasing power parity, surpassing the G7. And if we are talking about climate, the BRICS countries have the greatest potential of natural ecosystems – more than 30% of the world's territory, about 40% of the world's forest reserves. The potential of joint climate projects accounts for 37% of all joint initiatives. Obviously, our countries need to consolidate their positions on climate. And, of course, in this regard, the inevitability of the monetization of the cross-border carbon tax (CBAM) from 2026 is of particular importance for the economies of the BRICS countries.


— And if we talk about Sberbank in this context?

— As for Sberbank, we are fully aware of the need for Russian business to participate in the global climate dialogue, especially within the framework of joint BRICS initiatives. We see this as an opportunity to establish ourselves among the main trendsetters of the climate and ESG agendas. After all, in Russia, as in other countries of the alliance, regulatory and financial mechanisms for the climate agenda are being actively formed today. Moreover, many of them have already been tested and work well.

Next year, Russia will chair the BRICS countries, which may provide additional opportunities to promote Russian ESG initiatives at the international level. What, in your opinion, are the prospects for such promotion and cooperation?

— The BRICS countries have a much closer understanding of the problems and possible solutions in connection with climate change and adaptation tasks. Our strategic task for the next year is to give a new impetus to the discussion of a joint position and initiatives in the sustainable development agenda, because there is a demand in the countries of the association for the creation of a common climate platform and the settlement of differences in approaches to solving climate problems between developed and developing countries. Therefore, within the framework of next year's chairmanship, we are ready to initiate the creation of a BRICS climate council. Against the backdrop of a growing focus on economic and business components in the climate agenda, the BRICS+ Climate Council can reveal and develop the potential for creating new cross-border markets and technological solutions.

— Tell us more about the advice.

— The Council can become a permanent platform for synchronizing methodologies, exchanging data, technologies, and sharing experience. And one of the first projects here could be the creation of a single register of BRICS carbon units, which would take over the issues of methodology and verification, as well as the development of conditions for mutual recognition and exchange of carbon units.

— An interesting fact: according to the World Economic Forum, the ESG agenda and technologies will be the main drivers of global business transformation over the next five years, and by 2030 the green technology market will exceed $9.5 trillion. In your opinion, can the technology boom really help sustainable development?

— I would say that the symbiosis of technology and ESG is, perhaps, not obvious to everyone, but at the same time one of the most global trends today. Technology, especially AI-based solutions, plays an important role in sustainable transformation, as it is able to offer solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals – experts estimate that 79% of the Sustainable Development Goals can be achieved with the help of artificial intelligence.

For example, the successful experience of integrating AI technology into the sustainable development agenda in Malaysia is indicative. There, with its help, the production sector is actively updated, the authenticity of consumer goods, medicines and products is monitored, trade turnover is analyzed, and logistics chains are optimized. In China and India, artificial intelligence is being used to increase yields, and in South Africa, it is using data from various video surveillance systems to audit production sites and improve workplace safety.

By the way, Sberbank also has its own developments at the intersection of artificial intelligence and ESG. For example, we have developed our own model of risk events and the calculation of their economic consequences using artificial intelligence tools. We have also created and already implemented an AI model to identify unauthorized landfills. We have created solutions that help track and assess the status of populations of endangered species based on photographic data. In the future, this system will become a unified system for storing and processing data of Red Book animals. We are implementing this project together with the Far Eastern Federal University and the Amur Tiger Center.

But we must not forget that the activities of artificial intelligence models themselves are very energy-consuming, and it is important to constantly think about how to reduce their carbon footprint and maintain a balance. One of the solutions here may be the ability to retrain existing models and reuse them, rather than creating them from scratch.


— This year, many companies are summing up the results of the three-year strategic cycle and moving on to the next one. Could you please tell us what strategic goals Sberbank set for itself when adopting its first ESG strategy in 2021 and what are the main results of its implementation, and have all the goals been achieved?

— The volume of our responsible finance portfolio is currently more than 2.4 trillion rubles, although in 2021 our target was 1.3 trillion rubles. We expect that on the horizon of 2026, the portfolio may grow by 40% compared to the current one and amount to about 3.4 trillion rubles. We have also launched more than 20 non-credit ESG products for businesses, which are in great demand and form a market with a capacity of more than 1 billion rubles, and we have developed and recently launched our own platform for green energy certificates. This tool ceased to be available to Russian businesses in 2022, and our solution filled this gap.

In terms of reducing our own environmental impact, one of our key priorities was the climate strategy. At the end of last year, we exceeded the targets: in Scope 1, we reduced emissions by 21% compared to the base year 2019 (we planned 5%), in Scope 2 — by 18% (we planned 15%).


— What are the key areas of the new ESG strategy that you have identified for yourself?

— In the Strategy 2026, we have identified the three most important areas today: the development of the quality of life in the regions and the growth of social inclusion, the creation and implementation of tools and services for a responsible lifestyle and business, as well as the development of international cooperation. In particular, we are talking about the creation of new institutions in the BRICS/BRICS+ space, which I mentioned earlier.

In our operations, we set goals to reduce our own environmental impact, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and maintain our commitments to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030. We hope to achieve this through the introduction of energy-efficient technologies, the optimization of transport routes and the purchase of green energy. And as part of our 2026 strategy for responsible consumers, we are launching a product line piloting solutions such as green mortgages and charitable contributions.


— In conclusion, what forecast can you give for the development of the sustainable development agenda in Russia and in the world?

— Unfortunately, the problems of ecology and climate remain acutely relevant for every person in the world. If you read the final statement of the summit (COP28 – TASS), you will see the word "adaptation" in it many times more often than "mitigation".

— Explain what you're talking about.

— This means that most of the measures taken will be aimed at adapting to climate change: there is no need to talk about the complete prevention of negative consequences. Both business and governments are aware that full-fledged, systemic modernization can only be carried out on the basis of energy- and resource-efficient technologies, and the harmonious development of society in the future is impossible without abandoning nature-destroying industries.

For Russia, in my opinion, the main reference point should be to work with those environmental and economic challenges that are relevant specifically for our country, understandable and shared by its citizens. And if we manage to build a system that will unite all stakeholders around these tasks, then the "green" transformation in Russia will become even more tangible.

As a result, the main goal of all these initiatives is a person: the well-being and development of us and our loved ones in all spheres of life. The words "sustainable development", "new technologies", "innovations", "energy efficiency" sound abstract and non-objective to an ordinary person. And "clean air", "clean water", "healthy food", "no landfills" resonate in everyone. It is from this point of view, in my opinion, that the ESG agenda should be presented both in Russia and in the world — with simple human values that are understandable to everyone.


"To live, you need sun, freedom and a small flower" – this profound and wise saying belongs to Andersen. I am sure that thanks to our joint efforts, we will always have them!"

:rolleyes: :D

"...
As Tatyana Zavyalova noted, ESG parameters are gradually becoming an integral part of scoring and credit models and are beginning to directly affect the provision of financing. However, in the future, another scenario is also possible, when green fintech will focus exclusively on applied tasks, such as reducing energy costs, switching to renewable energy sources and responsible consumption.

According to the speaker, the request for ESG today comes not only from business, but also from its customers: so, in the Savings Bank, the number of ESG-oriented customers has doubled and reached almost 15 million people. According to Tatyana Zavyalova, the Savings Bank plans to offer ESG customers special products with an ESG component, for example, a green mortgage. The bank has already developed a carbon calculator that calculates a user's personal carbon footprint based on their transportation expenses. In the future, with the help of a calculator, each person will be able to independently calculate the amount of carbon that he produces due to daily activities. And the next logical step for Sber is solutions that will help customers compensate for their personal carbon footprint.

As for corporate clients, as Tatyana Zavyalova noted, stable credit products are already built into the standard credit process of the bank, green marking takes place within the framework of automated banking systems. ..."


 
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