Building the Future of the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology

Russian Students, Participants of RUSNANO Projects, Explore Western Entrepreneurship Practices

May 24, 2012

Cambridge -- Global Innovation Labs, completed its two-week Summer School Founders Bootcamp. The bootcamp brought Russian university students to Cambridge, Massachusetts, to help them understand how science and entrepreneurship are practiced outside of Russia.

The program targeted Russian students who receive training at various programs sponsored by OJSC RUSNANO and Fund for Infrastructure and Educational Programs RUSNANO and are involved in innovation and entrepreneurial activities in the field of nanomaterials and medical devices. Students represented “Formula Bio” program of Science Park of Lomonosov Moscow State University, RUSNANO sub-department of Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), and other universities in Moscow, Russia.

The bootcamp was organized in conjunction with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, its MIT Skoltech Initiative, the MIT Portugal Program and the MIT Science and Technology Initiative (MISTI).

Students participated in the MIT International Innovation Symposium and visited such business incubators as Cambridge Innovation Center, TechStars and Dogpatch Labs. They also toured the Research Center at Boston Children's Hospital.

A representative from Duane Morris, LLP, one of the largest U.S. law firms, educated bootcamp participants about the legal aspects of building a global business. The scientific program included lectures by leading MIT professors, including Jacob White, Elfar Adalsteinsson, Vladimir Bulovic, David Perreault and Karl Berggren, who introduced students to the latest developments in electronics, medical devices and nanomaterials. The lectures were accompanied by visits to MIT interdepartmental laboratories such as the Microsystems Technology Laboratories (MTL), the Media Lab, and the David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research. Robert Urban, the Koch Institute’s Executive Director, talked about leading practices in cancer research.

“I obtained a lot of information about my project and got useful feedback. Also it was interesting to be immersed in the innovative atmosphere of MIT,” said Sergey Zasukhin from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology.

"I, and many of my colleagues, were very impressed with the Russian students," said Jacob White, Cecil H. Green Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT.

Mentors at the Global Innovation Labs who are experts in the fields of patent law, technology licensing and commercialization of medical devices, marketing, venture capital, and human resources, led the business module of the Founders Bootcamp and advised students on their current projects. Mentors covered such topics as basics in medical device certification and obtaining US government grants. They also gave examples of US public-private partnership in the development of innovation and entrepreneurship.

“For me, as a computer science student, this training showed me the best practices of research and development and boosted my inner entrepreneurial spirit,” said Yaroslav Nechaev from the Lomonosov Moscow State University.

Along with the MIT Portugal Program participants, Russian students received a lecture on “Marketing of Innovation” by Bill Aulet, the Managing Director of the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship. David Gamarnik, the Nanyang Technological University Professor and an Associate Professor of Operations Research at the MIT Sloan School of Management presented them with a lecture on the role of mathematical modeling in management decision making.

In addition, Founders Bootcamp participants and their collegues from the MIT Portugal Program Venture Competition, presented their business projects during the Demo Day, organized by the Global Innovation Labs at the MassChallenge business accelerator. Close to two dozen business angels and venture capitalists attended the Demo Day.

The Summer School Founders Bootcamp concluded with its students’ participation in the finale of the MIT 100K business plan competition.

The program was sponsored in part by the Fund for Infrastructure and Educational Programs RUSNANO and the Lomonosov Moscow State University.

Global Innovation Labs - provides comprehensive services in the commercialization of technological solutions and promoting start-ups in the international market. Additionally Global Innovation Labs conducts programs Founders Bootcamp, Moscow Innovation Nights and Startup Factory, whose main task is to educate startup founders, technical professionals and students interested in transforming business ideas into investment-attractive projects.