A thousand Tatarstan residents to be offered free ticket to digital economy

5,000 digital training certificates are going to be given to five pilot regions

Residents of Tatarstan, Bashkiria and another three regions will be able to become the first in Russia to do a free training course in IT having obtained personal digital certificates. As Realnoe Vremya found out, citizens from 16 years to the pension age with vocational education or a university degree will be able to improve their digital skills for the new economy. The model is supposed to improve the level of the population’s literacy in information technologies.

Staff for digital economy

It is been known this week that the republics of Tatarstan, Bashkiria and Sakha as well as Rostov and Tula oblasts are going to become the sites to test personal digital certificates allowing getting free education (online or full time) in ICT and cross-cutting digital economy technologies.

This product was developed within the federal project Staff for DE, which is a part of the Russian economy’s digitalisation programme. The test will be carried out at the expense of the federal budget. The model is supposed to improve the level of the population’s computer literacy.

“If you want to help somebody, give him a fishing rod, not fish. The personal digital certificate is that fishing rod allowing people who are motivated to change to improve their digital skills,” thinks Director in Staff of Digital Economy at Digital Economy ANO Andrey Selsky.

Raise the competitiveness

Able-bodied Russians from 16 years to the pension age will be able to improve their knowledge of digital economy by means of the developed programme: students, young specialists who work for somebody, self-employed people and the unemployed. The only requirement is to have vocational education or a university degree (the citizen may be getting it now).

To get the digital certificate, a person has to fill in an application to the educational institutions that will provide free training. University of Innopolis will become one of them.

“I will remind that in June educational institutions of the republic obtained grants to teach schoolchildren digital skills. The personal digital certificates will become another opportunity for residents to improve their competitiveness. One of the key tasks of the Republic of Tatarstan is to enter the ecosystem of organisations to do the test together with both federal and regional providers of educational programmes on digital economy skills, employers of the region, occupational centres and staff selection services,” Minister of Informatisation and Communications of Tatarstan Ayrat Khayrullin noted on his Instagram account.

Specifics by September

Applications to take part in the testing of personal digital certification came from 31 regions of Russia. However, a special commission approved only five of them. As Realnoe Vremya was explained at Digital Economy ANO, potential participants were chosen considering the indicators in digitalisation, the readiness of the education system and the labour market.

5,000 certificates in total equal to up to 15,000 rubles will be equally distributed among five Russian regions. As Vice Minister of the Ministry of Economic Development Ilya Torosov specified, the regions will be able to use co-financing: “One can make a programme for 30,000 rubles, for instance. 15,000 rubles are from the federal budget, 15,000 rubles are from a region.”

A thousand certificates our republic is to be distributed among educational institutions of Tatarstan whose list will be made up after the selection process, which kicks off in August-September. The only thing known so far is that University of Innopolis is going to become one of such institutions. The number of certificates for an educational institution will also be known after the competition. The list of educational programmes will start to be formed at this stage, too.

Million participants by 2024

“The participants of the test will face new challenges. The educational programmes are to be chosen together with the regions by September. The programmes will become available for the population during the testing, coordination centres are created in the regions to communicate with all participants of the testing and consult those who receive personal digital certificates,” comments coordinator of the Staff Competence Centre for Digital Economy of DE RF national programme Oleg Podolsky.

The press service of the Tatarstan Ministry of Informatisation and Communications adds that the programme begins in August-September. A person who wants to get a certificate has to choose an institution and a training programme and do a test to find out the level of digital literacy. It is unknown so far who will be preferred — more literate citizens or vice versa.

It should be noted that federal authorities have ambitious plans for the programme. And if only the first wave of digital certificates is launched this year, much more certificates will be granted next year. Digital Economy ANO clarifies that a million people will be able to use personal digital certificates by 2024.

After the testing in the five regions, there will be made certain amendments to the offered models and organisational and technical solutions. In the future, the experience will be used at the federal level.

By Lina Sarimova