The core business of ITMO is the business of knowledge and learning, but of equal importance is the mission to provide competitive advantage and development for Russian economy and social sphere on the basis of the University’s entrepreneurial approach in scientific, educational and innovation activities to information and optics technologies.
ITMO, being the most important research university in Russia, is an important component of Russian innovation economy. The University nurtures both a culture of new venture creation and an infrastructure that will support many new ventures.
ITMO has been training foreign experts for 50 years. They work in Bulgaria, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Germany, India, South Korea, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey, Morocco, Nigeria and other countries.
At present more than 100 foreign students study at Foreign Students Department under contract or by state exchange.
For many years the University has cooperated with High Schools of China (Beijing, Harbin, Chan Chun), Sweden (Stockholm, Lund, Karstad), Germany (Siegen, Ilmenau, Munich), Finland (Lappeenranta, Joensuu), the USA (Arizona, Rochester, Connecticut, New Jersey) and others in terms of training and research. Russian students, postgraduates, teachers and research assistents have an opportunity to study and train on probation abroad under long-term contracts negotiated with these universities.
International activities are carried out by the International Cooperation Center (ICC) of ITMO. Its aim is internationalization of the University through implementation of scientific and educational projects and programs, participation in international university networks, development of international educational programs for foreign students, hosting international conferences and seminars.
The International Cooperation Center has implemented more than 15 international projects and programs within the University since 2001, including the European Union TACIS TEMPUS program , programs of council of ministers of Northern states, Swedish Institute, “Open Society” Institute (the USA), IREX etc.