Last week in his keynote speech at the Rusnanotech Nanotechnology International Forum the Russian President Dmitry Medvedev impressed me as making the most pragmatic, realistic and detailed speech I have yet seen by a national leader on the role of government in the commercialization of nanotechnology. You can watch the entire video of the speech here.Since the forming of the Russian Federation after the fall of the Soviet Union, the only bright spot economically has been the exploitation of Russia’s natural resources, in particular its oil. But as Medvedev points out Russia has the intellectual capability and the oil riches necessary to transform its economy into a knowledge-based one by using nanotechnology investment and research. It appears Russia is committed to getting this nanotechnology initiative right, even if it means they may have to change some of their ways of thinking along the way. I can think of at least one nanotechnology blogger that is changing his views on the Russia nanotechnology initiative.
Dexter Johnson is a contributing editor at IEEE Spectrum, with a focus on nanotechnology.
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