Moscow, Russia

2023-09-28 15:04:43

Leaders of Digital Transformation



· Population size: 12645258

· Population Growth Rate(%): 1.00

· Surface Area (sq. km): 2561

· Population Density (people/ 511682

· GDP Per Capita (U.S.$): 18800

· GINI Index: 0.42

· URL/Webpage of your local government and your initiative:

· Main Source of Prosperity (e.g. industry, trade, tourism, creative industry, etc.): manufacturing industries



Moscow Agency of Innovations, the innovation development institution of Moscow, hosts an annual international competition (hackathon) for the Moscow Mayor's award "Leaders of Digital Transformation" to support talented young specialists with IT skills to develop them further and create digital products (apps, programs) relevant for the development of the city. All participants work on actual tasks set by customers (city departments and corporations) The project provides young talents with the opportunity to create a digital solution that benefits the society. They receive consulting, financial, and organizational assistance from the Government of Moscow and mentors - IT professionals from the industry. By taking part in the competition, young talents acquire an understanding of how to interact with various actors: universities, government agencies, and businesses to carry out joint activities. The winning teams receive monetary prizes and gain hands-on experience in the practical implementation of the solutions they developed.



The Initiative contributes to urban sustainable development and the achievement of the provisions of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda.    The concept of the Initiative was developed by the Mayor of Moscow, Sergei Sobyanin, in line with his human-centric approach to the innovative development of Moscow.



The Initiative is a result of a complex PPP: different departments of the Moscow Government provided information on the key challenges the city is facing in the spheres they supervise and formulated tasks for the hackathon participants. The same was done by corporations that operate in various economic sectors. Both public and private actors provided mentors who guided the hackathon participants and worked closely with the winning teams in the improvement and practical implementation of the solutions they developed. This process required a new level of transparency and mutual trust.


The Initiative is conducted in partnership with several types of organizations:(1) departments of the Moscow Government;(2) technological corporations;(3) universities, such as The National Research University Higher School of Economics; The National Research Technological University "MISIS", The Moscow Aviation Institute (National Research University); (4) incubators, accelerators, non-profit organizations. For instance, the Russian Society "Znanie" ("Knowledge") is a public non-profit organization that implements projects in the sphere of education, supports teachers and students, and scientific and technology initiatives for youth. In general, the project unites more than 100 organizations.


For implementation in Moscow, the funding was provided by the Government of Moscow. For implementation in the regions of the Russian Federation, the funding will be provided by the regional authorities. An invaluable contribution to the Initiative is provided by experts from the city administration, universities, corporations, and other partners, who put their time and effort into (1) formulating tasks and providing technical details;(2) providing mentoring support for the hackathon participants, such as feedback on their work, help with the coding and management processes;(3) organizing educational and entertainment events for the past, current and potential participants.




The Initiative is evolutionary in character, as it is based on the results of previously implemented projects for the development of the innovation ecosystem. The analysis showed the demand for a project that would open new channels for young specialists to test and improve their skills as applied to relevant tasks of urban development, to learn more about the needs of the city and the ways they can personally participate in its development. The analysis also showed that the city administration should take steps to engage closer with the ICT community to better understand young specialists' needs and tend to them.



Since 2019, more than 22,000 IT specialists from all regions of the Russian Federation and other countries (such as China, Israel, Indonesia, and Kazakhstan) have participated in the competition. The result is a strong and motivated IT community that achieved outstanding results: more than 1,200 relevant digital products and services developed; more than 40 startups founded; more than 20 pilot tests and implementations conducted; a network of more than 100 partners formed (large IT and EdTech companies, universities, accelerators).


The key indicators are (1) the number of participants;(2) the number of digital products and services developed by participants; (3) the number of pilot tests conducted by participants; and (4) the number of startups founded by participants. The measurements are conducted by the Moscow Agency of Innovations and are used for further development of the Initiative.


The Initiative focuses on young ICT specialists, innovators, and startup founders. However, the digital products and services developed by participants, when implemented in practice, directly affect various social groups. One of the main such groups is people with special needs. The Initiative affects the majority of the Moscow citizens, which is more than 12 million, as some of the digital products and services developed by participants are applied to create new and improve existing city-wide e-government services.



Goal 8: Promote sustained, inclusive, and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all

Goal 9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation

Goal 11: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable

The digital solutions developed as a result of the Initiative help solve the most relevant tasks of urban development.

Target 2: Access to safe, affordable, accessible, and sustainable transport systems for all

Target 3: Participatory, integrated, and sustainable human settlement planning and management

Target 4: Safeguard cultural and natural heritage

Target 5: Reduce deaths and number of people affected by disasters with particular focus on the poor and people in vulnerable situations

Target 6: Improve air quality and manage municipal and other wastes

Target 9: Improving resource efficiency, mitigation and adaptation to climate change, resilience to disasters, and implementing holistic disaster risk management

Goal 17: Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development