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A Centre for Agricultural Innovation

Belgorod State University has teamed up with Belgorod State Technical University and Belgorod State Agricultural College, under the direction of Evgeny Savchenko, the Regional Governor, and the Government, to establish a centre of innovation in agriculture

The Governor chaired the meeting, which was attended by the Rectors of all three universities, Alexei Medvyedev, the Deputy Minister for Science and Education, Elena Nechaeva, Deputy Chair of the Presidential Directorate for Science and Education Policy, and the government's agricultural specialists Vugar Bagirov and Dmitri Efimov. Businessmen from key companies were also present.

The Governor announced the decision to create the 'Innovative Solutions in Agriculture' centre as a major step in making our Region a leader in agricultural research in the country. His deputy, Olga Pavlova, then gave a presentation explaining the structure and details of the project. Mr Medvyedev explained that Belgorod Region was one of three pilot regions where these strategic research centres are being created, as we meet the criteria set out by the President and his Ministers.

The guests had briefly toured the University before the meeting, and Professor Oleg Polukhin, our Rector, was able to demonstrate the strengths of our University in research, and explain why it was the obvious choice as the base for such an enterprise. Our innovations are already in demand, and we are partnered with an array of companies which include agro-industrial holdings, pharmaceutical companies, engineering businesses, mining and metallurgical concerns, and arms-length commercial entities. Recent research activities have featured cell and genetic research, the pharmacology of living systems, biotechnology, radiation physics, materials science, robotics, and information transfer systems. The Rector was also able to boast of major schemes we have going with the Agro-Belogorie Group, which co-sponsored our Centre for Genomic Selection, and with the EFKO Group, which runs the 'Scientific Breakthrough' program and a Business Start-up competition, and helps with the subsequent development of winning ideas. He was enthusiastic about the initiative, and believes that this project bodes well for the future.

 Translated by I P Turner, Centre for Foreign Language and Academic Writing

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