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5-th International workshop

“Digital Resources and International Information Exchange :East-West”

Federal program “Electronic Russia 2002 – 2010”

By Andrei Zemskov, director

Russian National Public Library for science and Technology


Plan of presentation

1. Outline and General Comments. Positioning

2. Could business gain ?

3. Electronic Libraries and Digitizing Projects

The presentation will span over three sessions; full text will be available at


Session 1

Federal program “Electronic Russia 2002 – 2010”

Outline and General Comments

Plan of presentation

  1. Positioning and role of program approach in Russia
  2. Interbranch program “Russian Electronic libraries”
  3. Federal program “Electronic Russia 2002 – 2010”. Outline
  4. Legislative grounds and E-government
  5. Implementation
  6. Conclusion


There were another programs since 1994 - 1995, concerning development of librarianship and information dissemination, e.g.

Federal Information Fund on Science and Technology,

Informatization of Russia,

Electronic Libraries by Ministry of Industry, Science and Technology

E-trade by Ministry of Communication and Information

Establishing of National computer telecommunication network for science and education

Informatization of Learning by Ministry of Higher and Professional education

LibNet (Informatization of Culture) by Ministry of Culture started with Cooperation of 6 Major Russian libraries (one stop access to electronic catalogs)

Pretty successful programs of Russian Foundation of Fundamental Research (e-library with 1200 full text journals), Russian Foundation of Juridical reforms (more 200 centers of access to juridical information),

TACIS and the Open Society Institute (Soros Foundation) : Libweb, Internet connection to 32 Russian Universities, Ruslan

Tenders of Russian Foundation of Fundamental Research and Russian Foundation of Technological Developments

So, the question is : “Which program should be of National e-Level ?”


Culture ?


Communications ?

Role of large program approach in Russia – declaration mainly.

Unfortunately Russian had historical tradition do not pay attention to fulfillment of numerous programs

Overcome America !

Program of Communism Establishing by year 1980

Dwelling Program ( everyone’s satisfaction by year 2000)

Agricultural program

Acceleration of scitech progress, etc

Just the same way some standards are ignored :

GOST 7.83 – 2001 (adopted by Intergovernmental Council on Standards, Metrology, Certification of CIS countries 30 October 2001,

to be actuated from July 2002)

concerning imprints on the “Title Page” of any Internet Mass media publications

2. Interbranch program “Russian Electronic libraries” developed by the Working Group which included employee

Ministries of :

Science and Technology,



Federal Agencies on :




Communications and

Russian Foundation of Fundamental Research

Electronic library was defined as a shared resources’ information system which provides acquisition, retention and efficient usage of various collections of electronic documents via global networks of the data transfer.

Preconditions for “Electronic libraries” initiative

Low usage efficiency of Russian resources

Insufficient coordination of Federal bodies with regional and municipal authorities

Ineffective investments into information technologies, lack of cooperation in resource generation

Inadequate support of domestic suppliers of information products and services

Outdated information infrastructure which could not satisfy the developments of science, culture and health care

Request for better access to archives

Russian ability to integrate into global information market

Growth of Russian speaking diasporas in USA, Israel, Germany and interests of Russian speaking communities living in former Soviet Union countries outside Russia

Goals of “Electronic libraries” initiative

Creation of electronic resources for science, technology, culture, education, health care; provision of access to electronic resources on the ground of information technologies.

Better efficiency of governmental bodies and economics due to establishing of innovative electronic media

Expansion of Russian sector of global information market

Expansion of the Russian language over global information space, support of Russian speaking diasporas outside Russia

Enlargement of domestic and foreign investments into development of the Russian information infrastructure

Dissemination of records on the Russian science achievements

Better access to and conservation of rare collections and materials by virtue of electronic format copies

Problems to be solved :

  • Wider access to information of high social impact
  • Analysis and evaluation of existing Russian information resources for electronic library as well as recommendations on creation of new electronic resources
  • Strengthening of cooperation between federal. Regional and local projects.
  • Establishing of system requirements (technological, legal, structural dimensions)
  • Maintenance problems
  • Pilot test bed project

Six Action lines

1. Legislation (positioning of electronic library, access to resources, security, copyright, rights and responsibilities of member libraries, acquisition issues, mandatory free copy including)

2. Program management (Steering body, peer reviewing of proposals for digitization, control functions, coordination with other programs, international cooperation, audit and accounting, grant seeking)

3. Creation of collections (determination of thematic disciplines and formats, collection of existing resources, digitization technology and practice, refining or reassessment the role of printed materials)

4. Linguistics ( format types of basic materials, encoding chart sets, metadata, vocabularies, data processing tools for natural language texts, graphics and multimedia)

5. Soft and hardware issues (development of standard tools for processing, storage and access to large information arrays, user’s tools, information protection means, navigation, compatibility, administration tools)

6. Learning of information suppliers and information users (development of programs and methodological materials, organization of schools and courses)

“Electronic libraries” initiative

Terms : Five years

Budget : $31mln (ca. $6.2 mln per year ) of which :

50% - federal allocations

25% - existing budgets for these purposes

25% - additional allocations to be found as grants, special projects and so on

Hearings of the “Electronic libraries” initiative in the Ministry of Science and Technological Policy were not fruitful due to bureaucratic “undercarpet” struggles. (white collars’ games)

3. Federal program “Electronic Russia 2002 – 2010”

Outline and General Comments

Russian Government Decree # 207-r 12.02.01

Coordination : Ministry of Economic Development and Trade

Execution : Ministry of Communication and Information, Ministry of Higher and Professional Education, Russian Aviation and Space Agency, Federal Agency of Governmental Communications and Information, Russian Agency for Control Systems

Subcontractors on competitive base

Developers : The Higher school of economics (Kuzminov, Yakovlev, Yasin), Russian and foreign consultants

Goals :

To improve economical efficiency and quality of management on the ground of information – communication technologies;

Establishment of grounds of Civil society by virtue of free access to information;

Extended training of information professionals and users


2002 – 2010 – program in total

1800 Russian post offices get Internet connection (as well as libraries, universities, schools)

2002 – 2002 – the first stage

2003 – 2004 – the second stage :

Five year growth of IT industry percentage from 0.1 % to 2%

Export of high end technologies growth by 20 fold up to $2.5 bln

Internet connectivity for all universities and half Russian schools

2005 – 2010 – final stage

Basic actions :

To assess the legislative grounds and economical control tools

To provide information transparency of government for civil society and easy interaction of public with administrative bodies on the ground of information – communication technologies

To facilitate state control improvement on the ground of information – communication technologies

To improve interaction (cooperation of) state with businesses

To establish training system for information professionals and for users

To facilitate development of independent mass media by virtue of information communication technologies, to support generation of public data bases and electronic libraries

To develop the infrastructure of public access system

Budget evaluations :



76 150 mln roubles (2001) – $2.4 bln

Federal allocations

38 967 mln

Regional and

22 535 mln

municipal allocations


Non budgetary sources

14 648 mln

Planned projects

Investments, R & D, etc.


Expected (planned) results

Better efficiency of public as well as private sectors on the ground of implementation and application of ICT

Provision for accelerated development of manufacturing of products and services in ICT market sector

Better openness for public of the state authorities, regional and municipal bodies, better cooperation of public (social involvement) with governmental bodies, value added public services

Value added higher, professional and secondary education due to active application of ICT

Development of independent mass media on the ground of ICT applications and facilitation of Civil Society formation

Responsible body is a problem

For to provide Compatibility of Internet programs of various departments Ministry of taxes (Internal revenue Services), Pension data, Police registration data

By February 2002 Mr Andrey Korotkov was appointed first deputy Minister of Communication and Informatization with responsibility to coordinate Electronic Russia program. Mr Korotkov come from Russian Government department of informatization where he participated in construction of governmental sites.

4. Legislative grounds and E-government

At the Cabinet meeting 25.02.02 Minister of Communication and Informatization Mr Leonid Reyman proposed to register all Internet sites and to introduce licensing system for Internet publications. He was not supported by other Ministers.

Third conference : “Information security of Russia in the global information society environment”

There are several groups of problem


Chapter 12 of the Act “Information, Informatization and Information protection” declares free access to the state information resources, which do not concern the state secrets; chapter 10 declares that demographic, ecological, statistical and other information resources which were produced for government bodies.

Chapter 3.2 of the “Electronic Russia 2002 – 2010” program declares free Internet access to governmental information of all levels

Right wing Union has established Expert group on IT legislation :

  • Russian Internet Academy,
  • Internet technologies center (ROCIT),
  • right wing MPs.

M-me Khakamada, Parliament deputy Chairperson is head of the group.


There are several private agencies (Kodex, Garant, Consultatnt) which presnt legislative information; FAPSI and Foundation of Legal Reforms are actively building the framework of information grid


There should be converted into digital format, structured as data bases and placed at open web sites gigabytes of information. Each web site needs 5-6 specialists for maintenance

Internet connectivity at centers of public access : post offices, libraries, schools

Psychological (or historical)

In any historical period Russian authorities preferred non transparency;

moreover by all means they insisted on limitation of access to their documents and decisions

5. Implementation.

Russian Central Commission for Election has developed “Election” (Vybory) State system which passed tests.

Chuvash Republic authorities with Intel company have launched RIAS integrated system as part of Electronic Russia Program. There are equipped more 30 local centers of information (1000 PCs), and republican network which provides access to local as well as to central data banks. Budget 7.3 mln USD was allocated by IBRD.

Central Data bank of RIAS in Cheboksary includes :

  • economical part on reublican and local levels (Budget, Finances, Trade, Enterprises, Property, Licensing, Bankruptcy, Dwelling services) as well as
  • population part (Passports, Metrics, Pensions, Health Care, Taxes, Education).

Two accessibility levels are provided ( for employee and for public). All information you could find at web site of republican administration www.cap.ru

Department of Education Test Center has been processing with ABBYY Software House applied program “Fine Reader Script” and “ABBYY Form Reader”

more 1 000 000 questionnaires of secondary schools graduates for 20 days in the frameworks of Integrated State Exams Program.

75 Russian Federation regions of total 89 are participating in the program.

Voluntary fee based test results are accepted by Admission committees by 350 higher education institutions (more 50 % of total Russian institutions).

Integrated State Exams Program enables to get standard and uniform scoring.

Federation of Internet education has opened more 20 regional centers in the framework of “pokolenie.ru” initiative by UYKOS company.

As an example :

Irkutsk regional center in the premises of Teachers’ Training center :

51 PCs, 128 kbit/s connectivity (transmission capacity), 40 seats at a time (ca. 1000 per year). Free of charge training will be performed on the ground of recommended Guide “Internet Technologies for the science teacher”.

Federation of Internet education will pay students’ transportation cost, accommodation and meals.

There is Internet center for penitentiary institutions : since September 2000 Ivanovo regional site www.uin.ivanovo.ru is in operation and world wide e-mail address is uin2000@mail.ru

Penitentiary for youngsters (300 prisoners) at Iksha town; one could find them at iksha.dmitrov.ru

7. Conclusion .

1. This program was born in well cultured environment. There were and there are a lot of initiatives concerning Russian efforts to develop the Information society.

2. Program concept was formulated in the “stand alone” regime with no relation to ongoing or previously completed programs. It means that results do not affect other sides of previously programmed e-activity.

3. Program was formulated and advanced during short wealthy period of unexpected oil-related incomes. Now situation has changed and this program could be essentially truncated, because it does not fall into “socially protected” articles of budget.

4. Hardly this program could facilitate cooperation or provide coherent efforts; vice versa it will encourage competition for budget allocations.

5. Nevertheless, this program is a step in right direction .

At IREX - sponsored conference “Internet in Russia : Freedom and Control” February 18-19, 2002, discussion concerned uneasy problems of interaction free as the wind Internet with generic suppressor – the State.

At interview “Izvestia” 22 February this year after this conference Mrs Esther Dyson, “mother of Russian Internet”, owner of several Russian Internet projects, editor of “Release 1.0” journal, and “New York Times” columnist, has said : “Electronic Russia Program is not perfect. But nevertheless it is an action… it is not good for finish but for beginning it is good”.



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