The meeting was conducted as a video conference, and it addressed the following issues.

1.  Measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19

The lockdown at the University will be maintained from 29 June through 12 July.  Researchers and teaching staff will be allowed onto the grounds of the University to work in the research centres of the St Petersburg University Research Park (as before, no more than 300 individuals a day) (see Order No 5987/1 dated 26 June 2020 ‘On measures to prevent…’)

Some of the staff who have received clearance have not made use of it, or have used it sparingly (for example, one day out of five).  As a result, others have not been able to exercise their right to gain access to the University grounds.  Therefore, the lists will be adjusted to correspond to the actual situation, which is to say that clearance will be withdrawn from those who have no need for it.

2.  Management of the end-of-semester assessment

The University’s end-of-semester assessment is coming to a close.  In the past week, the Virtual Reception has received 74 appeals on academic matters from students and teachers, and Marina Lavrikova, Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Affairs and Teaching Methods, has received another 21 through her corporate email.  Of these, 17 had to do with the management of the exams and pass/fail tests.  There were, among others, questions about changes in the timetable for the exams, about the material that was included from the last semester of the master’s programme, about visa support for foreign students, about the results of the exams and about the procedure for issuing diplomas.

3.  Management of the State Final Certification

Over the past week, 364 graduate qualification defences have been held, and they were carried out by 75 State Examination Boards.  As a result, 251 students received a mark of ‘excellent’; 103, a mark of ‘good’; and 10, a mark of ‘satisfactory’.   There were no ‘unsatisfactory’ marks. 

One third of the state examinations for law students in bachelor’s programmes have already been held.  The results show that 48 students received a mark of ‘excellent’; 94, a mark of ‘good’; and 47, a mark of ‘satisfactory’.  There were no ‘unsatisfactory’ marks.  State examinations have also been held for 126 resident physicians from different programmes at the Faculty of Medicine.  The results are the following:  94 of them received a mark of ‘excellent’; 30, a mark of ‘good’; and 2, a mark of ‘satisfactory’.   State examinations have been held for 94 resident dentists as well, with the following results:  87 of them received a mark of ‘excellent’; 4, a mark of ‘good’; and 3, a mark of ‘satisfactory’. 

During this past week, 5 appeals have been filed by law students.  Two of them were upheld, but the final mark was changed in only one case.  In the second case, the student received more points, but this did not affect the mark.

4.  St Petersburg University has received a grant from the Ministry of Education and Science

St Petersburg University took part in a competition conducted by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation for grants to be awarded in the form of federal subsidies under the project ‘Provision of the possibility by the year 2024 for no less than 20 percent of students in higher learning educational programmes to take courses and disciplines (modules), including online courses, using the resources of other educational organisations, including universities, to ensure that the quality of the education provided to students is in keeping with the world standard’.  The bid was drafted by the Centre of E-Learning Development at St Petersburg University.  Igor Tikhonovich, the dean of the Faculty of Biology and a member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and Kirill Chistiakov, the director of the Institute of Earth Sciences at St Petersburg University, provided considerable assistance.  The University submitted an application for the project ‘A series of online courses on the agrobiotechnology of plants’ in the category ‘The development of online courses in Agriculture and the Agricultural Sciences’, and it was declared the winner of the grant.  In all, 21 applications had been submitted in this category.

The participants in the meeting also discussed the results of the board meeting of the Russian Union of Rectors, which was devoted to the organisation of agricultural education in Russia.  At this meeting, Dean of the Faculty of Biology Igor Tikhonovich gave a presentation on interdisciplinary research in the field of biology and agriculture at St Petersburg University (presentation of Igor Tikhonovich).

5.  Participation of members of the public in monitoring the financial and business activities of St Petersburg University

In 2015, to boost the managerial effectiveness of the University’s business operations, a system of transparency in the planning, acceptance and carrying out of work and services was introduced (https://spbu.ru/openuniversity/documents/materialy-rektorskogo-soveshchaniya-410#p4; https://spbu.ru/topics/2391; https://spbu.ru/news-events/novosti/sostoyanie-universiteta-pod-kontrolem-studentov).  Information about planned events and their outcomes is published on the University site (https://spbu.ru/topics/2391; https://spbu.ru/openuniversity/documents/o-formirovanii-komissii-po-priemke-vypolnennyh-rabot-po-dogovoram-ot).   Anybody who wants to can take part in the acceptance of work and services.  Among others, representatives of the employees’ trade union committee and the student council, along with members of the University community who are using facilities that are under repair, must be included in the work acceptance commissions (https://spbu.ru/sites/default/files/20181003_9567_1.pdf; https://spbu.ru/topics/2391).  Representatives of the public are always informed well in advance about upcoming job tenders.   Any decision made by the work acceptance commission is documented in an act, which all of the commission’s members, including representatives of the public, sign. 

All of that having been said, unfortunately, representatives of the public do not always take part in hiring decisions.

As of 1 June 2020, more than 60 types of work were either under way or had been carried out, including the following:

  • technical services (7)
  • maintenance services for the premises and the grounds (12)
  • emergency work (4)
  • project design (23)
  • repair work (8)
  • overhaul of a façade (1)

6.  An action plan for a barrier-free environment

The University has submitted an application to participate in a new phase of the federal action plan A Barrier-Free Environment.  A plan has been approved for activities connected with the forming of such an environment at St Petersburg University (see Order No 5963/1 dated 26 June 2020 ‘On approval of a plan of action…’).  Since more than 27 percent of the buildings at St Petersburg University are considered to be historical and qualify as cultural heritage sites, it is generally impossible to create a barrier-free environment in them.  The directors and deans were instructed to send any suggestions or comments they might have about the plan of activities.

7.  Elections to a new Academic Council

At a meeting on 25 June, the St Petersburg University Academic Council decided to hold a conference on 21 September of research and teaching staff, along with representatives of other categories of workers and students at the University, to elect a new Academic Council. 

In light of this, other issues connected with organisation of the conference were discussed, including possible dates for meetings of the academic councils at the institutes and faculties.  Proposals made by the directors of the institutes and the deans of the faculties concerning the requirements for becoming a member of the Academic Council were analysed. An overwhelming majority of those present agreed that the University’s Academic Council itself should establish specific requirements involving a candidate’s length of service at the University and their holding of an academic degree.  As a result, the Academic Council was asked to come up with the following requirements:  ‘A candidate for membership in the St Petersburg University Academic Council, to be elected at a University Conference on the recommendation of the academic councils of the University’s institutes and faculties, must have a degree that is recognised by St Petersburg University, and they must have held an academic position with the University as their primary place of work for at least five years.’

During this discussion, other proposals were adopted as well.  Academicians or Associate Members of the Russian Academy of Science may stand for election to the St Petersburg University Academic Council even if they do not work full-time at the University.  And researchers and teaching staff at St Petersburg University who hold the titles of Honoured Artist of the Russian Federation or Honoured Performing Artist of the Russian Federation are on an equal footing with those who hold academic degrees.

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 17 August 2020

1. St Petersburg University in ARWU-2020 ranking

The ARWU-2020 university ranking, that reflects statistics for 2019, has been published. St Petersburg University is the only Russian organisation recognised for in the Highly Cited Researchers criterion (Researchers from St Petersburg University are listed as the most cited scientists in the world).

In this group the University is represented by three luminary scientists: Gennady Leonov, Nikolay Kuznetsov, and Raul Gainetdinov who are registered with St Petersburg University as their primary affiliation. The University was therefore awarded an extra 12 points, which raised its ranking by dozens of positions as the common graph  shows. The University Administration is committed to seeing more high citation researchers among the University academic staff, as well as to support already employed high citation researchers.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 10 August 2020

1. Organisation of work amid measures to prevent COVID-19 spread

The University continues its operation in the existing format through 16 August 2020. Since 29 July the University Scientific Library has been open by prior registration to University visitors, teachers, research fellows, and administrative staff (Order No 6896/1 dated 24 July 2020 ‘Amendments to...’). A temporary procedure for all visitors to access the University museum collection was also approved. Now the Dmitri Mendeleev Museum and Archives and the Vladimir Nabokov Museum are operating according to a temporary timetable; the University is going to reopen access to its other collections in the near future (Museums of St Petersburg University reopen to visitors). The number of visitors inside the museum is strictly limited (5 or 10 visitors maximum depending on the museum indoor area).

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 3 August 2020

1. Admissions to degree programmes

31 July was the deadline for acceptance of documents and applications for aspirantura programmes. Compared to 2019, this year the number of applicants has grown by almost 300. At the moment, the period of admissions tests for applicants to aspirantura programmes has started.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 27 July 2020

1. Measures to prevent COVID-19 spread

From 27 July to 16 August 2020 the University continues to operate in the existing mode. Since 29 July the University Scientific Library is open by prior registration to University visitors, teachers, research fellows, and administrative staff (Order No 6896/1 dated 24 July 2020 ‘Amendments to...’). The Dmitri Mendeleev Museum and the Vladimir Nabokov Museum are reopening their doors to visitors. The number of visitors inside the museum is strictly limited (5 visitors maximum).

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 20 July 2020

1. Meeting of the St Petersburg University  Board of Trustees

On 15 July the St Petersburg University Board of Trustees held a meeting that was attended by President of the Board Dmitry Medvedev. The agenda was focused on the territorial development of St Petersburg University. Dmitry Medvedev noted that St Petersburg University has a fairly positive image in international university rankings. He highlighted that the University’s territorial development is bound to ensure future success of its students by establishing technical capacities for years to come. The full text of Dmitry Medvedev’s speech is available in the VKontakte official group of St Petersburg University.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 13 July 2020

The Rector's meeting was held on 13 July 2020 via video conference. It addressed the following issues:

1. Admission to the academic programmes of St Petersburg University

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 6 July 2020

The Rector's meeting was held on 6 July 2020 as a video conference. It addressed the following issues:

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 29 June 2020

The meeting was conducted as a video conference, and it addressed the following issues.

1.  Measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 22 June 2020

As proposed by the Rector of St Petersburg University Nikolay Korpachev, the meeting began with a moment of silence to mark the Day of Remembrance and Sorrow.

The participants of the meeting also held a moment of silence for Vataniar Saidovich Yagya, professor emeritus of St Petersburg University (https://spbu.ru/news-events/novosti/pamyati-pochetnogo-professora-spbgu-vatanyara-saidovicha-yagi) and the deceased St Petersburg University student Egor Panshin. 

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 15 June 2020

The University Rector Nikolay Kropachev suggested observing a minute of silence in tribute to the death of Vladislav Golikov, a University student (https://spbu.ru/news-events/novosti/pamyati-vladislava-golikova).

On 15 June 2020 the Rector’s meeting was held in videoconference format. The agenda was as follows:

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 8 June 2020

1. St Petersburg University and Harbin Institute of Technology laid the first stone of the joint campus

On 7 June 2020 the ceremonial laying of the first stone of the joint campus of St Petersburg University and Harbin Institute of Technology took place in Harbin (PRC). Wang Wentao, Governor of the People's Government of Heilongjiang Province, the Rector of Harbin Institute of Technology Zhou Yu, and other officials witnessed the ceremony. Nikolay Kropachev, the Rector of St Petersburg University, participated in videoconference format (https://spbu.ru/news-events/novosti/spbgu-i-harbinskiy-politehnicheskiy-universitet-nachali-stroitelstvo-sovmestnogo).

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 1 June 2020

The University Rector Nikolay Kropachev  invited all meeting participants to observe a minute of silence  in honour of Innokentiy Zinoviev, Colonel (Res.) and Chairman of the University Council of Veterans of War, Labour, and Armed Forces (https://spbu.ru/news-events/novosti/pamyati-predsedatelya-soveta-veteranov-voyny-truda-i-voennoy-sluzhby-spbgu), and Viktor Riazanov, Chairman of the Department of Economics Theory and Honoured Professor of the University (https://spbu.ru/news-events/novosti/ushel-iz-zhizni-vydayushchiysya-uchenyy-ekonomist-professor-viktor-timofeevich).

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting No 426 dated 19 May 2020

1. Organization of teaching within military education programmes

The meeting started a few minutes late since N.M. Kropachev was having a talk with the State Secretary/Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, General N.A. Pankov about the organization of military training sessions for the University students during the pandemic. Earlier, the Virtual Reception Office received several requests, expressing concern about the upcoming military training sessions. Due to the shift towards distance learning, many university students went home to their native regions and, in their opinion, because of the epidemic prevention measures they might not be able to return in time for the military training sessions. Furthermore, according to the students, a long journey could increase the chances of getting sick and “bringing the virus” to the military training locations.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting No 427 dated 25 May 2020

1. Activities of SPbU Choir during the COVID-19 pandemic

At the beginning of the Rector’s Meeting, all the participants had a change to listen to the recording of the song “Our University” composed by L. Tikhomirov and performed by SPbU Choir (artistic director E. Krotman). 

This is not the first composition recorded by the University Choir during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Earlier, the choir already performed online the song “Coronavirus shall not pass!” composed by Sergei Pleshak.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's Meeting No 424 dated 12 May 2020

1. Organising the University activities in May

The educational and other activities of the University will continue to be organised in the same distance mode. At the meeting, it was noted that the interim and final assessment of students will proceed entirely in the online format.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting No 425 dated 15 May 2020

1. Organization of interim assessment

Interim assessment in the spring semester of the academic year 2019/2020 is organized to be held remotely, using the technologies suggested by the directors and the deans. The same tools are used that were used for teaching online classes. More than 9,000 students have already taken their tests and exams. Only a few requests connected with organizational matters were submitted by the students via the Virtual Reception service. There were also requests related to the assessment of exam results. The Virtual Reception service did not receive any requests from either students, the teacher staff or other staff members of the University in connection with the matters of technical organization of online interim assessment.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting No 423 dated 6 May 2020

1. State final certification in distance format

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting No 422 dated 02 May 2020

1. Set up of academic activities from May 1 to 11

Set up of University academic activities from May 1 to 11 was discussed (Order no. 3808/1 dated April 30, 2020 ‘On the implementation of academic programs’).

It was noted that the academic process the academic process has been running in distance format for over a month. The Virtual Reception is continuously receiving enquiries from students asking when education will return back to normal. The University is committed to follow the rules and regulations enforced in St. Petersburg as a Russian Federation constituent.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting No 421 dated 02 March 2020

1. SPbU Olympiad for School Students and Doors Open Days

Despite negative attitudes expressed by the majority of directors and deans at the Rector’s meeting on March 13 regarding the in-presence format of the SPbU Olympiad for School Students (Materials of the Rector’s meeting dated March 16, 2020), the University hosted the in-presence finals of the SPbU Olympiad for School Students on March 14 and 15 in six subject fields (The finals of the SPbU Olympiad for School Students are over).

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting No 420 dated 16 March 2020

1. Agreement between SPbU and the Ministry of Higher and Secondary-Specialized Education of the Republic of Uzbekistan

Read more ...