Employment of disabled people in Russia in the context of digital economy
Ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2012 in Russia and formation of a national strategy for social policy for persons with disabilities demanded the creation of a system for monitoring the implementation of its provisions and performance evaluation. The article discusses the formation of a system for monitoring the status of persons with disabilities in Russia and the issues related to observance of their rights, taking into account the international experience of conducting surveys on the situation of persons with disabilities.
In Russia, there is a large-scale system for collecting statistics on the status of persons with disabilities, covering 10 agencies. However, it is important for objective monitoring to use the capabilities of population censuses and special sample surveys of persons with disabilities, including those living in institutional settings. This will reveal the peculiarities of the status of persons with disabilities and the attitude of society towards them. In 2015, during the micro census, an analysis was made for the first time related to the extent of the incidence of disability in Russia. Federal State Statistics Service conducts a number of selective surveys affecting health problems and the peculiarities of vital activities of persons with disabilities. Survey data provide an overview of the incomes of persons with disabilities, the factors that affect their health status, the accessibility of social services, nutrition, the structure of free time, and social inclusion. It is necessary to form sampling frames for conducting a special sample survey of persons with disabilities, taking into account the Federal Register of Persons with Disabilities, which will allow obtaining representative data in the context of various social and demographic groups of persons with disabilities.
The article describes the status of persons with disabilities, based on the existing model of statistical observation. The statistics show a decrease in the number of persons with disabilities, which is largely due to changes in the criteria for determining disability. First of all, the decrease occurs due to the decrease in the number of people recognized as persons with disabilities. The share of disabled workers is growing. Among young persons with disabilities, men prevail, and there is a superiority of women in more mature age. The share of oncological diseases increases in the structure of disability.
It is necessary to make wider use of sample surveys of persons with disabilities in the course of revealing the situation with observance of their rights, satisfaction with the quality of life, assessing the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Russia. The introduction of changes in the program of sample surveys conducted by state statistics bodies will provide more complete and objective information on the implementation of the state strategy for the persons with disabilities and the observance of their rights.
The development of information technologies and rapid growth in the volume of accumulated data makes it necessary to develop new scientific approaches, technologies and methods for collecting, processing and storing information. Digitalization has significantly affected people employed in science and technology: the ability to work with large amounts of information, the knowledge of statistics, and the ability to correctly publish research results became crucially important. For researchers the possession of digital skills signifies the confident use of new data analysis tools and implementation of new technologies.
Research practices and competencies of Russian doctorate holders are examined within the framework of the project “Monitoring survey of Highly Qualified R&D Personnel” (National Research University Higher School of Economics, 2010-2019). One of the objectives of the project was to assess the readiness of Russian researchers for digital transformation and to found out to what extent modern digital technologies have taken over the activities of Russian Doctorate holders. It was analyzed whether Russian scientists are familiar with modern digital terminology, whether they apply modern data processing tools in practice and whether they are ready to improve own digital skills.
The sample included the total of 2061 Russian Doctorate holders, representing all fields of science, and employed in the academic sector (research institutes and universities), as well as in industrial and service sector companies.
The professional activity of most Russian Doctorate holders is associated with the regular use of information technologies. Among the surveyed PhD holders, 85% reported that they regularly use computers and the Internet, another 10% use them periodically. But scientific work involves not only basic computer skills, but also advanced data analysis tools. Our results show that less than half of Russian Doctorate holders are aware of modern digital technologies, except for Big Data Analysis. Moreover, a number of digital tools and technologies are well-known, but have not yet found widespread practical application.
The “digital outlook” can come from the general erudition of the Doctorate holder or from the practical experience of using various digital tools: researchers can be clearly divided into “abstractly informed” and “practitioners”. Employees of research institutes, who are more aware of the meaning of digital terminology, use new digital technologies much less frequently than their colleagues from universities and the non-academic sector. A similar situation is observed when comparing age groups: while the youngest scientists are more often aware of the meaning of digital terms, middle-aged and older scientists, if they know the digital technologies, also quite often use them in practice.
Every third Doctorate holder in Russia at least occasionally uses Big Data analysis, every fourth – Data Mining, User interface design, Cloud and distributed computing, every fifth – Text Mining, Machine Learning, Applied Mathematical Optimization.
The use of particular digital technologies varies according to the type of organization: User Interface Design is more often practiced outside the academic sector, while Big Data Analysis and Machine Learning are more actively used by Doctorate holders employed in research institutes and universities. The biggest number of employees who deal with Mobile Application Development appeared in the research Institutes.
The most advanced digital users are those who specialized in natural sciences, engineering sciences, social sciences, and mathematics; PhD holders in agriculture are the least informed.
A significant part of Russian scientists already have experience in improving their digital skills by taking part in various computer courses. Over the last 3 years, every fifth Doctorate holder (18.9%) attended computer courses. However, emphasizing digital skills, it is important not to forget about the importance of soft and hard skills, that employers expect from researchers.
Ensuring the equal employment opportunities for persons with disabilities is one of the priorities of public support for people with disabilities in Russia. This determines the need for detailed, reliable and timely statistics on the position of persons with disabilities in the labor market. The authors analyzed the content and quality of statistics collected in this area, considering, in particular, the recent methodological, organizational and statistical innovations - inclusion of the questions about disability status in the key population surveys and creation of the Federal Register of Disabled Persons (FRD). The article notes that to date, estimates of the employment rate of persons with disabilities on the basis of administrative data and labor force survey differ, which justifies the need for an additional analysis of the methodology of these indicators. Thus, data of the FRD contains information about all people with disability status in Russia, but information on their employment covers mostly employment in the formal sector. While the population survey data, according to the authors, on the contrary, make it possible to take into account all forms of employment, but face the problem of underestimating of people with disabilities due to the design of the questions used, the reluctance of individuals to declare disability, and due to the fact that some groups of people with disabilities are less likely to be respondents of the surveys. In addition, the administrative data and the labor force survey data differ in the length of the reference period and methodology of calculation of annual indicators. According to the authors analysis, administrative data reflects the number of employed persons with disabilities more objectively, while for detailed characteristics of disabled people position in the labor market population survey data may be used.
Ratification of the Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities denoted transition to a new understanding that disability results from the interaction between persons with impairments and attitudinal and environmental barriers that hinders their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others. The objective of this research is to suggest improvements to Russian disability employment statistics in compliance with modern model of disability on the basis of the international experience. Based on the lessons learned from the experience of countries of the European Union, Australia, Canada the authors formulated recommendations on designating groups of people with disabilities and recognizing barriers in the labor market that are be applicable to the existing Rosstat surveys and observations. Firstly, to avoid measurement errors in the number of persons officially recognized as disabled, it is recommended to use a separate question about the degree of disability. Secondly, it is proposed to use questions about longstanding health conditions and basic activities limitations. Thirdly, an additional module to Labor force survey may be included in accordance with experience of the EU countries. This module is aimed at identifying barriers in the labor market for the disabled people. It is reasonable to include in it questions on the work limitations due to health conditions and basic activities limitations, requirements in special assistance, employer awareness of the disability status, health conditions and basic activities limitations of the individual; other reasons of work limitations (not including health reasons). The questions on the barriers in the labor market have never been considered before in the Russian statistics.
This article focuses on key skills of researchers and engineers in the field of robotics, which are demanded by employers in Russia and in the world. Information about demanded skills is collected using two methods: the text-mining analysis of open-access vacancies in the field of robotics both in Russia and abroad, and in-depth interviews with Russian employers. Lists of the most demanded skills in Russia and abroad coincide. Russian specifics are the importance of English language proficiency and knowledge of national standards for technical documentation.
The paper examines the structure, governance, and balance sheets of state-controlled banks in Russia, which accounted for over 55 percent of the total assets in the country's banking system in early 2012. The author offers a credible estimate of the size of the country's state banking sector by including banks that are indirectly owned by public organizations. Contrary to some predictions based on the theoretical literature on economic transition, he explains the relatively high profitability and efficiency of Russian state-controlled banks by pointing to their competitive position in such functions as acquisition and disposal of assets on behalf of the government. Also suggested in the paper is a different way of looking at market concentration in Russia (by consolidating the market shares of core state-controlled banks), which produces a picture of a more concentrated market than officially reported. Lastly, one of the author's interesting conclusions is that China provides a better benchmark than the formerly centrally planned economies of Central and Eastern Europe by which to assess the viability of state ownership of banks in Russia and to evaluate the country's banking sector.
The paper examines the principles for the supervision of financial conglomerates proposed by BCBS in the consultative document published in December 2011. Moreover, the article proposes a number of suggestions worked out by the authors within the HSE research team.