Sunday, December 18, 2022

Moscow will Need Many Months to Train Replacements for IT Professionals who have Fled Russia, Figures Show

 Paul Goble

            Staunton, Dec. 16 – Up to now, the Russian government has put a brave face about the flight of IT professionals, but now it is worried. And Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has directed his subordinates to come up with measures to prevent the departure of ever more of them (

            The reason for this increased concern lies not only with the immediate impact of the departure of as many as 100,000 IT workers in response to Putin’s war in Ukraine but also in a growing recognition that try as it may, Russia won’t be able to train replacements quickly (

            At the present time, Russian higher educational institutions are producing about 68,000 IT specialists a year. That means it would take at least 18 months to replace those who have left and even longer if more of those already employed or a share of those being trained choose to leave as well.

            What remains uncertain is what the Russian government will do to try to cope with this situation. If it improves conditions for IT workers or expands training in this field, that is one thing; but if it seeks to limit the ability of IT professionals, arguably the most mobile Russians of all, to leave the country, that is something else entirely.

            But what is clear is this: Moscow lacks the resources to take the positive steps and thus is likely to take the negative ones, especially if Putin’s war drags on and ever more IT specialists depart, leaving Russia in an ever worse situation as far as high tech industry is concerned.

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