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The Growing Militarization of Higher Education in Russia: A Concern for British Intelligence Services


Feb 13, 2024
Russia’s Higher Education Faces Growing “Militarization,” UK Warns

The growing militarization of higher education in Russia is a concern for the British Intelligence services, who point to the establishment of a new institute on military strategy at a major university in Moscow. The Moscow Higher School of Economics (HSE) has created the Institute of Military World Economics and Strategies, led by Admiral Sergei Avakyants, a former commander of the Pacific Fleet. Avakyants believes that Russia is at odds with the West and the institute will focus on political and economic issues, with a particular emphasis on the foreign military industry.

The British Ministry of Defense’s Intelligence service has stated that this closer collaboration between academia and the defense sector is likely to contribute to the militarization of higher education in Russia. The Institute will draw on faculty from the HSE as well as researchers from various military academies, such as the Russian General Staff Academy. Sergei Karaganov, a political scientist and advisor to Russian President Vladimir Putin, created the institute and his ideas about defending ethnic Russians in surrounding countries have been used to justify actions such as the invasion of Ukraine.

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