June 20, 2013
June 20 — At the St. Petersburg Forum, the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology and SURFnet, one of the leading research network operators in the world, signed a Letter of Intent to form the foundation for conducting cutting-edge research at Skoltech.
Skoltech and SURFnet intend to establish a persistent high-bandwidth connectivity from Skoltech/Moscow to SURFnet. This network connection will link Skoltech in Russia to NetherLight in Amsterdam and is intended to support highly data-intensive collaboration projects between Dutch and Russian scientists and academics. These connections are key for supporting Skoltech’s agenda in research and education, including scientific collaborative projects with the Netherlands such as the Skoltech Center for Stem Cell Research.
The high-speed connection will enable researchers in this project from Skoltech, Groningen University Medical Centre, the Vavilov Institute of General Genetics in Moscow to apply state of the art genomics technologies as they work to form the foundation for personalized medicine. Another example is collaboration in scientific ICT research and developing and exploiting innovative technologies carried out by Skoltech and the University of Amsterdam.
The ceremony, corresponding with the CEO Business Round Table was attended by Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich and Dutch Prime Minister Rutte. Skoltech President Edward Crawley and SURFnet CEO Erwin Bleumink represented their respective organizations to sign the letter of intent.
Edward Crawley, President of Skoltech: ‘We are strategically forming partnerships to advance education, research and innovation. This network connection is one step on that path, empowering Skoltech scientists, students and our academic and industrial partners to truly make a difference in their collaborative research. Furthermore, it will increase Russia’s connectivity to Europe and beyond.’
‘The network connection will provide an incentive to collaborate between the Netherlands and Russia in the field of science. At the same time it will further strengthen the Netherlands’ position as the digital gateway to Europe’, says Erwin Bleumink, CEO of SURFnet.
The “Big Data” revolution and increasing internationalization in science demands effective international high-bandwidth network connectivity for research and education. Linking Skoltech to SURFnet’s optical node NetherLight in Amsterdam will spur Dutch-Russian cooperation in data-driven science and engineering. This link will strengthen the Netherlands as the Digital Gateway to Europe. It will also give Skolkovo scientists, students, and their academic and industrial partners access to their peers in Europe. And it will motivate economic and industrial development through innovation around data and networking in both the Netherlands and Russia.
Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology
The Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech) is a private graduate research university in Skolkovo, Russia, a suburb of Moscow. Established in October 2011 in collaboration with MIT, Skoltech educates global leaders in innovation, advances scientific knowledge and fosters new technologies to address critical issues facing Russia and the world. Applying international research and educational models, the university integrates the best Russian scientific traditions with twenty-first century entrepreneurship and innovation.
SURFnet is the National Research & Education Network (NREN) organisation in The Netherlands. SURFnet ensures that researchers, instructors, and students can work together simply and effectively with the aid of ICT. SURFnet links ICT services, scientific instruments, and people with reliable ICT infrastructures, made up of a network infrastructure and a collaboration infrastructure. SURFnet also demonstrates what is possible by developing and testing innovative ICT services. SURFnet is part of SURF, the Dutch higher education and research partnership for ICT.