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Article
Publication date: 12 June 2017

Ilya F. Kuzminov, Thomas Thurner and Alexander Chulok

This paper aims to describe and discuss the architecture of Russia’s Technology Foresight System (TFS). This paper introduces the reader to the integration of the TFS into…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to describe and discuss the architecture of Russia’s Technology Foresight System (TFS). This paper introduces the reader to the integration of the TFS into the public administration system and, specifically, into the national strategic planning system.

Design/methodology/approach

To do so, the authors fall back on more than 10 years of experience in performing foresight exercises for Russian policy makers of their institution.

Findings

Thereby, the paper highlights the implications arising from the interaction between sectoral and national components of TFS and on application of the results of foresight studies (implemented within the framework of TFS) for the strategic planning.

Originality/value

Russia has a long history of technological planning and forecasting and engages regularly in extensive foresight activities of both national and sectoral relevance. Also, Russia’s leadership repeatedly stresses the importance of such foresight activities which are outlined by a national law since 2014.

Details

foresight, vol. 19 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 10 April 2017

Thomas Thurner

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Abstract

Details

foresight, vol. 19 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

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Article
Publication date: 10 April 2017

Ozcan Saritas and Ilya Kuzminov

This paper aims to analyse the mainstream and emerging global challenges and trends in the global agriculture sector. The analysis leads to a discussion on the present…

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2091

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to analyse the mainstream and emerging global challenges and trends in the global agriculture sector. The analysis leads to a discussion on the present state of the Russian agroindustry and possible future strategies for adaptation in the context of the rapidly changing global environment.

Design/methodology/approach

The design of this study is based on the application of the core methods of Foresight. First, a trend analysis is undertaken using reviews and expert methods. Trends identified are mapped using a social, technological, economic, environmental, political and value (STEEPV) framework to ensure that a broad range of trends are covered, which may be stemming from various factors affecting the agriculture sector. The analysis of the big picture of global trends and challenges, interacting with country-specific structural factors, translates are translated into the opportunities and threats, which will in turn help to develop possible strategies for adaptation.

Findings

This study develops two adaptive strategies for the development of the Russian agroindustry that are feasible in different short- and long–term time horizons. The first strategy is considered to be the most likely choice for the period before 2020. It includes radical imports’ substitution (of commodities as well as machinery and high-tech components) for ensuring national food security with inevitable temporary setbacks in efficiency and labour productivity. The second strategy, which becomes feasible after 2020, considers re-integrating Russia into global supply chains and expanding commodities exports (volumes and nomenclature) based on full-scale technological modernization with the use of international capital.

Research limitations/implications

The study design is based on the assumption that Russia’s position as a country, which is highly self-sufficient on basic agricultural products and large exporter of crop commodities and fertilizers, will remain unchanged in the horizon of at least 20 years. However, long-term forecasts should also scrutinize the possibility of radical structural changes. Therefore, future research should concentrate on wild cards that can completely disrupt and transform the Russian agriculture industry and as well as the whole economy.

Practical implications

This paper suggests a number of recommendations on national science and technology policy for the three main industries of the Russian agricultural sector: crop husbandry, animal breeding and food processing (the fisheries sector is excluded from the scope of this paper). In addition, this paper proposes a number of measures towards alleviating the institutional barriers to raise the investment attractiveness of the sector.

Originality/value

The novelty of this paper lies in the originality of the research topic and methodology. The Russian agricultural sector has rarely been studied in the context of global agricultural challenges and threats taken on the highest level of aggregation beyond commodity market analysis or agro-climatic and logistics factors. There are few or no studies that lay out a map of possible long-term strategies of Russian agroindustry adaptive development. The Foresight methodology applied in this study is customized to better fit the practical purposes of the study.

Details

foresight, vol. 19 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 10 April 2017

Ilya Kuzminov, Alexey Bereznoy and Pavel Bakhtin

This paper aims to study the ongoing and emerging technological changes in the global energy sector from the frequently neglected perspective of their potential…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study the ongoing and emerging technological changes in the global energy sector from the frequently neglected perspective of their potential destructive impact on the Russian economy.

Design/methodology/approach

Having reviewed existing global energy forecasts made by reputable multilateral and national government agencies, major energy corporations and specialised consulting firms, the authors noticed that most of them are by and large based on the extrapolation of conventional long-term trends depicting gradual growth of fossil fuels’ demand and catching-up supply. Unlike this approach, the paper focuses on the possible cases when conventional trends are broken, supply–demand imbalances become huge and the situation in the global energy markets is rapidly and dramatically changing with severe consequences for the Russian economy, seriously dependent on fossil fuels exports. Revealing these stress scenarios and major drivers leading to their realisation are in the focus of the research. Based on the Social, Technological, Economic, Environmental, Political, Values (analytical framework) (STEEPV) approach, the authors start from analysing various combinations of factors capable to launch stress scenarios for the Russian economy. Formulating concrete stress scenarios and assessing their negative impact on the Russian economy constitute the next step of the analysis. In conclusion, the paper underlines the urgency to integrate stress analysis related to global energy trends into the Russian national systems of technology foresight and strategic planning, which are now in the early stages of development.

Findings

The analysis of global energy market trends and various combinations of related economic, political, technological and ecological factors allowed to formulate four stress scenarios particularly painful for the Russian economy. They include the currently developing scenario “Collapse of oil prices”, and three potential ones: “Gas abundance”, “Radical de-carbonisation” and “Hydrogen economy”. One of the most important conclusions of the paper is that technology-related drivers are playing the leading role in stress scenario realisation, but it is usually a specific combination of other drivers (interlacing with technology-related factors) that could trigger the launch a particular scenario.

Research limitations/implications

This study’s approach is based on the assumption that Russia’s dependence on hydrocarbons exports as one of the main structural characteristics of the Russian economy will remain intact. However, for the long-term perspective, this assumption might not hold true. So, new research will be needed to review the stress scenarios within the context of radical diversification of the Russian economy.

Practical implications

This paper suggests a number of practical steps aimed at introducing stress analysis as one of the key functions within the energy-related sectoral components of the Russian national systems of technology forecasting and strategic planning.

Originality/value

The novelty of this paper is determined both by the subject of the analysis and approach taken to reveal it. In contrast to most of research in this area, the main focus has been moved from the opportunities and potential benefits of contemporary technology-related global energy shifts to their possible negative impact on the national economy. Another important original feature of the approach is that existing global energy forecasts are used only as a background for core analysis centred around the cases when conventional energy trends are broken.

Details

foresight, vol. 19 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

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