Elena VEDUTA. Sergey Nikolaevich, these days we speak a lot about the digital economy. Could you, please, explain to us what it means from your point of view as a practitioner? What sense the digital economy should have so we could design and construct the future for the benefit of our people?
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. The leaders of digital transformation are the USA, Great Britain and Germany. All these states have got a certain strategy. For example, the USA have created a giant system that produces cheap cell phones, tablets and so on in China. In fact, due to the millions of such devices, the Western countries have already plunged everyone into a new world of digital transformation.
Another example: the USA are trying to" reincarnate " its currency system by digitizing it. Moreover, the USA is trying to digitize everything in the world: minerals, transport infrastructure and so on: to manage all these things in the future. For this purpose, they are creating a data network all over the world. It is not a secret that a simple cell phone, mobile communications of all operators, all equipment, all software, all digital platforms on which it is based, as well as data base management systems (DBMS) – everything was created and developed in the USA.
And almost all DBMS used in Russia for data storage in both commercial and public sectors are of American origin.
The most part of the DBMS developers in the United States are either closely related or directly funded by the U.S. intelligence agencies and the Department of Defense, as the DBMSs are the strategic systems that affect the workability and safety of management systems and data warehouses. Unfortunately, in our country such researches and developments were not conducted for the last thirty years.
In case of blocking the work or revocation of licenses for American DBMSs, Russian users will not be able to store and to process data.
In the USA, under the NSA control, the system solutions for Internet of objects are developed by Cloudspanner (Google) and Cosmos DB (Microsoft) on the basis of the DBMS 5th generation. These products will be presented in alpha release formats in 2020. In the future, the 2-4 years development of Google and Microsoft infrastructures will ensure the introduction of products in the form of objects everywhere. At the same time, the integration of the USA Internet of objects into other countries will be equivalent to the foundation of American and NATO military bases in their territories, but by significantly lower costs for the United States and with the complete loss of control and sovereignty by other countries. Even the refusal of these countries to use dollars in world trade operations, while using the Internet of objects, will not provide their defense, as under the control of the NSA their dollars will be replaced by crypto and other digital currencies: tokens and so on.
The development of Internet of objects in the USA is focused on the robotized creation of digital doubles of all its users, as well as on the risk management and threats of blackmail by means of social conflicts in different countries and supranational international associations. The fighting use of the Internet of objects by the United States and their allies is aimed at the individualized dynamic calculations of two-level system of risk factors that provides flexibility in decision-making process and combat correlation of people and robots.
Elena VEDUTA. Does Russia possess any developments like that?
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. Russia has its own 100% national technology "Odant", with the object-oriented ecosystem (DBMS of the 6th generation: the block-chain, frog computing, voice and graphical management of robotized systems, encryption, modelling, etc.) basis, able to launch the Internet of objects before the USA do it, and thereby to ensure the security and sovereignty of Russia.
Elena VEDUTA. You mentioned the Great Britain and Germany among the leaders…
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. The UK is now looking towards a return to its former influence and the role it has lost recently, especially with regard to its former colonies. The UK creates and becomes a holder of standards for a variety of technologies.
Germany takes the way almost painless for us. There they have the industrialization 4.0, the Germans are readjusting logistics, transport corridors and so on.
All these countries own standards introduced long ago. It should be understood that their technologies and standards are of the 4th – 6th generations, and our technologies that we would like to implement in the nearest future, are of the 2nd generation. It means that the Western countries have an idea of the goal they are moving towards in their development.
Elena VEDUTA. And in Russia?
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. Here in Russia we have not yet answered the question: what the aim of our movement is. Shall we fit into the context that the leading Western countries have already created, or we could offer the world the new project? There is no understanding of the technologies that we shall use for digital transformation, and it is a very important point. We need to realize that digital transformation is inevitable. We have to build our own rules of the game, our own regulations and standards. It is necessary to create an "architecture", to define the strategy and make the comprehensive plan of action that includes Change Management, control, real and significant responsibility of the performers at all levels, the migration of existing developments and researches, competencies, systems (Geo-information system, Regulatory reference information, the System of interdepartmental electronic interactions, Information sources of complex structures, etc.), the preparation of infrastructure and population, as well as the financial backing for 10, 20, 50, 100 years. When we start building the house we understand what kind of house it should be so we could call it our home.
Recently, our President said that the control over the implementation of digital transformation will be carried out by the United People's Front (UPF) and the Federal Guard Service (FSO) of Russia. But if there is no “architecture”, no model, what will they control? Where are the measure and reference standard? What will it be compared to? Have we achieved our goals, what is the part we have to implement?
Elena VEDUTA. Also, every citizen of our country has the right and must understand the essence and the strategic goal of the current situation...
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. Of course, he must understand the essence of national projects, the spatial development of his village, region and the whole country. It is necessary to make changes in the educational programs for schoolchildren and students, so that they can understand the trajectory of national projects and the whole state within the planning horizon of 10, 50, 100 years.
Elena VEDUTA. And what positive results of digital transformation are we waiting for?
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. First of all, it is the transparency of processes and data, the disappearance of those buffers that are artificially created between the consumer and the manufacturer. Digital transformation should provide end-to-end optimization of production, financial, logistics and other chains. It should provide optimization of taxes and government fees, to ensure the transition of business to the safe public platforms, to create the “single window” and online dues mechanisms, such mechanisms can track the whole chain - from mining, cultivation and production to the final consumer.
Elena VEDUTA. In other words, the corruption component will disappear as well as the “dealers”-resellers – the existing ballast between the producer and the consumer?
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. You are right, prices are falling, the producers’ real revenue is increasing, and they can upgrade their production facilities, rebuild production chains according to the final consumers’ request. But if we want all this digital transformation to work all over the country and in the total economy, it is necessary to carry out the process of reengineering of all technological processes. And, what is the most important, we need to create cybernetic models to improve economic management.
Elena VEDUTA. The main idea of the phrase “digital economy” is “economy”, not “figure”, isn’t it?
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. Of course! What are the USA doing today, for example? They are creating their own economic models, then announce them as digital technologies: data from various transducers, end-to-end personal data, information from cell phones, geo-positioning and so on. All this is referenced to their models, which already include economic aspects, for example, getting the digital rent, digital profits from concrete people, from each person, from each country.
Elena VEDUTA. The USA does it only for their own wealth?
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. Of course! Our President, our Ministry of Defense are doing everything for our security. We see that new equipment; modern weapon systems are being produced... But we miss the resistance to the so-called soft power, it means that Western countries together with the World Bank and their protégés in our country (for example, audit, consulting, digital companies), develop and regulate something, invest huge amounts of money in strategies and strategic risks they manage, in our state, in our digital platforms, technologies, knowledge, in enterprises – at our expense! They came to our territory quietly and gently, built the information networks, digital infrastructure, education, hooked us on a consulting and technological injection needle. Physically all business, all infrastructure of our country is based on the Western software, the Western DBMS, the Western automated control systems of technological processes, the Western sensors.
Elena VEDUTA. Can the West turn off some of the systems?
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. No, no one will turn them off! Their intelligence service is working at its full capacity carrying out a complete collection of data from our technological processes, processes in civil society and the state, and management at all levels. The West sees the whole picture with all our processes and the entire economy. The West completely collects the entire technological and business process of our enterprises and can remotely influence everything, can interfere into the production or quality control of goods.
The global digital transformation that implements their strategies for their own interests has already gone deep into Russia. We do not control the process of such implementation, such unhampered expansion at our expense.
The USA and China are ready to get and draw out the Russian digital rent from all and everything, from every citizen, from every business and get the full data of the life activity of the state.
Elena VEDUTA. It means that our Russia could disappear!
But we have another way. I have been studying digital strategies of the UK, USA, China, Singapore and other leading countries for a long time, but I know the domestic experience, the most advanced experience of the Soviet Union in working with information. I mean our strategic planning of the economy, which takes into account forward and backward linkages in coordination of the planned “input output” calculations of all levels of management to implement the strategic tasks of the country. Such kind of Soviet planning is fundamentally different from the modern indicative (“dead”) planning, which is lobbying someone's interests instead of making agreements on the planned calculations of “input output”. The Soviet Union was the leading country because it was the first in the world to develop and implement the mechanism of live planning, which agreed our demand with our production capabilities.
In fact, we started to develop cyber economy – the management of the economy using the backward linkages and the moving planning (real-time). Our plan consisted of the sequential algorithm of “input output” calculations, which were being made until you get the balanced plan to provide proportional (without crisis) economic development. Thanks to the planning, the Soviet Union, designing ambitious tasks of industrialization of its economy, was able to implement them in practice, providing scientific and technical world leadership.
In contrast to the United States with their “buy-sell” mechanism that redistributed income in their favor by means of the trade and bank margin that had been developed for more than a thousand years, the experience of the USSR to create the mechanism for economic planning lasted only for several decades. Therefore, our mistakes in planning the economy were inevitable. Now we are not talking about mistakes, but about the fundamental difference between the two mechanisms for managing economic and political processes.
Our people have a tendency to produce what they need with their own hands, to determine the income of each person justly, depending on his or her contribution to the common deal and to live honestly, looking forward to realizing their big dream with the help of strategic planning of our joint activities. And today we want the digital economy, in other words, the cyber economy, to help us to calculate such trajectory of development; our children could also participate in these calculations and practical implementation of such trajectory, that means, they themselves would create their future – they should be confident in their future, be happy and could say: “I am proud that I live in Russia”.
Moreover, if Russia does not complete its mission and doesn’t introduce the digital economy that allows it to enter the trajectory of public goods growth, then no country will do it, nobody will have a future.
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. Elena Nikolaevna, the problem is that today in Russia as well as in the world, digitalization resembles “digital rush”. In fact, there are no integrated and understandable rules of the game, no regulations, standards and so on. Those who have a certain understanding of the enormous possibilities of universal digitalization and have the means (financial, lobbying), they are creating the Russian "digital oligarchy": determine and share the main pieces that will help them to extract rent from all citizens and organizations of our country. These flows will be put into the structures-operators that are being defined today. Furthermore, some of the government functions are transferred to some new structures with unclear ultimate owners. It means, the state loses control and management functions. At the same time, the “digital oligarchs” create or build nothing (for example, effective enterprises, providing new employment for the population), but snatch the tidbits – digital rents, control over transport corridors, traceability of goods and cargo, labeling of goods and so on – out of the state and put them in their bins.
However, I agree with you – we still possess the knowledge of our grandfathers’ generation. They had been building the USSR, they had a powerful tool – Gosplan. For example, the academician Victor Glushkov had been creating the national automated control system (OGAS), your father Nikolay Veduta, created inter-branch balances. They made the models of management of national economy, models of balances in production, between the enterprises, production chains of goods release and so on. All this was a part of the huge state platform, as we now call it, – the associated system of information and processes.
Today it is very important for us to restore this knowledge and to understand what competencies and experience we have retained. Our grandfathers are still alive; they can help us to transform their strategic planning experience into digital economic management, in other words, into cyber economics.
Here is a living example. Everyone says that we need to develop the “silk road”, the transport corridor ... and let's think about what will happen in 10-20 years, taking into account the horizons. There are Lomonosov Moscow state University, Bauman Moscow state technical University, MIPT (Fiztech), RAS, the best scientific centers... They will help us to understand whether we need to build such transport corridors, create models, risk maps…
Moreover, it is very important to understand how this will meet the needs and capabilities of our citizens. The digital economy, like any new technology, carries the risk of a large number of unemployed. So, we need to understand in advance what to do with these unemployed people, whether it is necessary to give them additional education and what kind of education it will be. It also requires the planning for the country's economy development, taking into account full employment.
Today, however, digitalization is taking another way, not the way of the efficiency of economic management improvement. People are not explained the details of digitalization that is well under way. For example, as soon as a citizen signs his permit for the further use of his personal data, it means that his personal data will bring rent and profit to one of the new-born Russian “digital oligarchs”, but not to this citizen. Imagine the variety of income forms that can be received from the access to our cell phones, e-mail, personal preferences, medical data, and so on. Basically, the permission to process personal data is not required at all, since almost all of modern devices work on foreign technologies, on Western control systems and software, it means, we are all transparent and are voluntarily and rapidly moving into digital slavery. Therefore, we urgently need to stop and to contemplate again – what point Russia is moving to.
I am sure that Russia can now create a new model of economic management, that is, a real digital economy, and develop it on the basis of domestic digital technologies. Our Authority and Government should accept that digitalization means the transparency of all processes in the economy and that digital transformation should be based only on Russian technologies, Russian DBMS and so on.
Moreover, due to the Soviet experience, scientific knowledge, non-standard solutions and Kulibin type of thinking, we can involve other countries into our orbit, offer them to take our standards. It is not even necessary to create the international consortium. Let me give you an example. The Ali Baba trading platform came to Russia quietly, without any problems, without any borders, and now a huge number of Russian citizens use it. But Ali Baba is a part of the American digital system, just like Amazon or Google. They implement the strategy of the USA digital economy, developing international commerce without any borders and increasing profits in the interests of American corporations.
Elena VEDUTA. As for the Russian “digital oligarchy”, I am sure that it is condemned to give up its position in getting rents from our population in favor of the larger, global “digital oligarchy”. Our new “digital oligarchs” could hardly resist the offer to sale our databases to the rich Western oligarchs.
What choice will our “digital oligarchs” have? The first version is that together we will rethink the strategy of the digital economy, its goals and mechanisms of their achievement, we will start using domestic digital technologies for their introduction into cyber economics, ensuring the independent movement of Russia to the life improvement in the country; and all citizens of the country will participate in this democratic process: they will provide information about their consumer preferences, which, together with data from the producers, will be accumulated, processed and will help to make effective state, corporate and public decisions. The second version will be an alternative one, based on the Western patterns, on Western technologies of total digitalization, and all of us together with Russian “digital oligarchs” will find ourselves in digital slavery in China, or in the United States.
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. I would not say that we are offered an alternative. This digital slavery, the so-called digitalization, is presented as given, as evolution. It's just physically imposed at all levels. This Western managed strategy is implemented through computer games, through training and implementation of their standards and technologies with the realization of their ready-made “cases”, leadership competitions and so on.
In fact, the Russian “digital oligarchy” equips everything for those who will come to Russia as the winners. After all, this sort of oligarchs does not build factories, enterprises, does not develop our technologies. Look, they are slowly adopting Western software and technologies at their enterprises and companies. Therefore, they are actually building a base for the Western winners; it means that that they are temporary workers.
At the same time, our President said clearly that digital rent should remain in Russia, that the entrance to Russia should be controlled and managed. So, today we must completely review the huge layers of our ideas and provide the opportunity to launch the model of mobilization economy. The true digital economy means not only transparency, but also a single huge platform, which is previously discussed at one round table and the further rules of our common life are agreed. In this, it is necessary to solve the extremely important issue of Russia’s security and sovereignty. Our special services should have financial resources to protect our citizens, to protect our country from external and internal influences and threats, creating conditions for strong security in the future. For example, to create appropriate digital troops, police and so on.
Elena VEDUTA. Nevertheless, unfortunately, we still do not have a mobilization model of the economy yet, but the threats are increasing. The so-called liberal principles of life, imposed from one center of the financial dictatorship, pull the growth of financial speculations; their rampage gives an impulse to the scrapping of this liberal model and to the beginning of polycentrism. As history shows, after polycentricism there is a war as the way out of unsolvable world conflicts. This is the Western experience, the way of “Western film directors” thinking. However, even if we consider our nuclear capabilities, there will be no military conflict. Using the processes of total digital expansion of the West, especially the USA, they do not need war to enslave us. If we give them total information about ourselves, we will be occupied without any war.
The Security Council, I'm sure, began to understand that it is necessary to develop the mobilization model. Many Governors have already understood this. Recently, the Governor from the Far East District said that we needed to coordinate and plan the development of the economy of the Far East, otherwise we would not cope with the problems. Why doesn’t the Security Council declare loudly and clearly the number one strategic task of creating the mobilization model, taking into account the presence of the dynamic inter-sectoral model for the organization of our digital economy (cyber economy), and using the domestic modern digital technologies? After all, it is impossible to give a start to the revival of Russia without this exact decision of the Security Council!
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. I would like to outline: only national safe and advanced (4th - 6th generations) digital technologies and knowledge.
Elena VEDUTA. Yes, only national! The “Western-style digitalization” leads all states to disaster, this is the end of history. However, the historical mission of Russia is to change the "Flood" vector of development of civilization – to put it in the direction of an optimistic future. And this is what all people of the Earth need.
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. The Security Council is indeed the body responsible for the sovereignty and security of our state. I am sure that they understand that we have no right to stop. We now have the opportunity to make an unexpected spurt up to the top and pull everyone with us from the total global collapse. From every angle they are trying to reassure us that we are doing well, thereby trying to stop us and to lull. If we follow these hypnotists, it will turn out that in five years the West will go very far ahead.
I would like to say a few words about the way Russia should choose to move in the rescue strategy of the real digital economy. What we have: technologies, the sequence of their further development and implementation, scientific knowledge, strategic planning experience, huge resources, universities and specialized centers with a variety of competencies. What we needed: to create a Normative-digital code, which will eventually demolish the Tax, Customs, Land and other codes. It will architecturally describe the rules of the game for everyone, regulate and structure digitalization, build a model of cyber economy – the mobilization model as we call it today.
Elena VEDUTA. In the process of development and implementation of this mobilization model – the model of digital management of the economy – no “experiments on people” would be held. There are modern powerful computers and technology — check, put any data and conditions, work out algorithms – all you want!
I would like to draw your attention to the fact that the United States are in deep economic crisis and in the “digital chaos” imposed by them. Once Roosevelt had the opportunity to accept the code of fair competition, which was formulated on the principles of Soviet planning, as the basis of his course to overcome the Great Depression. We all live on the same planet. And our experience is transferred from one person to another like water in connecting vessels. The experience of planned economy in the USSR helped the USA to get out of the pit. Now we have our hands tied, we can’t help not only ourselves but also other countries to get out of the crisis and chaos. Total digitization, the creation of digital doubles of everything and everyone against the background of the growing chaos, accompanied by the general transformation of people into fooled slaves, will never drive out to development and creation. Civilization will just disappear.
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. I totally agree with you. We need the “Mighty Group” of architects, economists, mathematicians, engineers. We need to throw away all our emotions: someone I love, someone I hate, someone has such a background... It is necessary to discuss and write a development strategy without any emotions, to put a lot of complex puzzles into a single picture, to involve regions, to formulate new standards. Next step is the creation of a single national digital platform.
It should also be noted that we still have a very good school of risk. Not financial risks, in favor of financial globalists, but the technogenic risks, which are under the supervision of the Security Council. There is a huge risk map! The risk-oriented model should be worked out at the same time and accompany the economic model. We have to think in advance – what the financial system will look like in the future. Perhaps there will be no banks in 10 years, because any bank is an intermediary between an individual and a legal entity, and it gets its margin which is not small. Perhaps the Central Bank will be able to connect all individuals and legal entities and to give them the same funds directly.
We must also create a 100% national digital platform and applications, software and DBMS. Now we are fixated on the so-called domestic system 1C, while 1C is constructed according to the Western patterns, but is even more expensive than Western analogs. At the same time, we have got some applied solutions developed by our Kulibins but not demanded for the meantime. There are completely different, network-centric principles, not cloud, but innovative fog technologies. Nevertheless, these decisions are not in high-demand; moreover, they are even attacked by the pro-Western protégés and lobbyists.
Elena VEDUTA. In my opinion, it should be declared loudly and responsibly from the highest tribunes that it is Russia that takes responsibility for building a new digital development strategy – the true digital economy that constructs the future; responsibility to create a world digital economy that does not work for the cyber-slavery and doesn’t plunge people into poverty and misery, but works for the growth of real incomes of citizens, harmonious development of countries and helps the world to get out of the global crisis.
For our part, we are ready to invite the most outstanding digital transformation specialists from the West to the forums and discuss our unique model of the digital economy with them in a constructive way.
Sergey YEVTUSHENKO. And, while discussing to "rewire" their brains and to integrate them in our model of cyber economy.
Elena VEDUTA. I know that some concerned Western people are ready for it. They understand that there is no cyber security nowhere, because chaos promotes the growth of cyber-attacks. Eventually, hackers will take power from national and global digital oligarchs. The world financial oligarchy has already understood it and is afraid of it. Therefore, nobody should prevent Russia from creating cyber economy in the interests of the people.