Global Agenda Council on Russia 2014-2016


In a post-financial crisis era where rapid global growth is no longer typical, Russia will have to seek new and innovative means to foster economic development. As signs of financial distress loom in 2014, diversification and the development of a sustainable model is now more than ever necessary to ensure that Russia continues its ecenomic transtormation.

With rich natural resources, a growing middle class, connectivity into global trade and supply chains, and an educated and mobile workforce, Russia has the key components necessary to move towards the next phase of development. Membership in the WTO and its place in the group of BRICS have helped increase its role on the world stage, while it has maintained a leading regional role as it launches the Eurasian Economic Union in 2015. Despite these strengths, the private sector is looking for solutions to key stumbling blocks in the business environment, including the rule of law, red tape and corruption.

In this challenging context, innovation has become a necessity. Russia's entrepreneurs are turning weaknesses into stengths, addressing market failures and finding new ways to satisfy local consumer demand. Where multinationals are only beginning to understand the market. Russian businesses adapt to the domestic context. Some entrepreneurs and companies have already achieved worldwide recognition.

The Global Agenda Council on the Russian Federation's new project seeks to explore how companies in Russia have succeeded localy and globally, as well as what kind of leadership strategies entrepreneurs have developed to lead a company in an era of global interconnectedness. To be presented in 2015, the project aims to support both SMEs and large corporations in Russia, exchanging best practices on innovative business models, and ultimately unlocking new sources of growth.


As we observe the increasingly difficult macroeconomic conditions, there is the ever-growing risk of persistent economic deceleration in Russia. At such a critical juncture, it is especially important to go beyond the immediate roadblocks and stifling policy constrains and to focus on the long-term sources of the country’s growth. Below the surface of the bleak image of the country, a vibrant entrepreneurial culture is creating true entrepreneurial leaders.

The report is a compilation of surveys, interviews and focused discussions on the theme of entrepreneurship, continuing the momentum of the Global Agenda Council’s work in Russia. Despite the challenging business climate in Russia, select entrepreneurial leaders have emerged by adopting innovative business models and leadership strategies, combining Russian traditions with global best practices.

Collecting insights directly from business leaders of start-ups, SMEs and large corporations outside of the natural resources sector, the report has provided a new perspective on how these companies, not satisfied with the business-as-usual approach, succeed in the complex Russian market.

To get involved please contact

Research Analyst: Liana Melchenko, Associate Director, Global Agenda Councils,
Council Manager:
Salvatore Freni, Community Senior Associate, Eurasia,
Forum Lead:
Andrew Chakhoyan, Associate Director, Eurasia,


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