ITMO University is a large state university in Saint Petersburg and is one of Russia's National Research Universities. ITMO University is one of 15 Russian universities that were selected to participate in Russian Academic Excellence Project 5-100 by the government of the Russian Federation to improve their international competitiveness among the world's leading research and educational centers.
Research priorities of ITMO University are concentrated in information and photonic technologies.
The university consists of 18 departments, 7 research institutes and one academy, with a total of 119 chairs. As of April 1, 2014, the total number of students is 13,890, with over 900 being foreign nationals. The university employs 1,163 instructors, including over 800 PhDs.[4] Many of its staff members and researchers have received government awards and designations of “honored science worker,” the highest in Russia. Vladimir Vasilyev has been the university's Rector since 1996. ...

University Rankings

ITMO University is one of the 15 universities-participants of the Russian Academic Excellence Project 5-100, aimed at maximizing the competitive position of a group of leading Russian universities in the global research and education market. It was launched in 2013. The success of the project will be measured by performance in the two of the most authoritative rankings – QS and Times Higher Education. In March 2015 ITMO became one of the top four leaders of the Project.
The Ministry of Science and Education plans to increase the subsidies to the leading schools up to 1 billion rubles.

University Institutes and Departments

  • Institute of Design & Urban Studies
  • Institute of Translational Medicine
  • Department of Higher Qualification Expert Training
  • Department of Computer Technologies and Control Systems
    • Department of Control Systems and Industrial Robotics
    • Department of Software Engineering and Computer Systems
    • Department of Information Security and Computer Technologies
  • Information Technologies and Programming Department
  • Department of Infocommunication Technologies
  • Department of Photonics and Optical Information
  • Department of Laser and Light Engineering
  • Department of Technological Management and Innovations
  • Institute of International Development and Partnership
  • Department of Cryogenic Techniques and Air Conditioning
  • Department of Food Biotechnologies and Engineering
  • Department of International Business and Law
  • Department of Management and Automation Controls
  • Department of Natural Sciences
  • Department of Integrated Military Education
  • Department of Distance Education
  • Department of Secondary Vocational Education
  • Department of Career Development and Pre-Entry Preparatory Training
  • Department of Advanced Training of Teachers


Since 1996, the Rector of the university is the Honored Scientist of the Russian Federation, Chairman of the Council of Rectors of St. Petersburg (2004), vice-president of the Russian Union of Rectors (2006), corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Education, corresponding member Russian Academy of Sciences, Doctor of Technical Sciences, Professor Vladimir Vasilyev.

Research and Partnerships

ITMO University collaborates on research and innovation projects with several large Russian companies, including LOMO, D.I. Mendeleyev Institute for Metrology (VNIIM), “Techpribor,” “Elektropribor,” etc. The university has signed an agreement to create the Northwestern Center for Technology Transfer that will become one of 12 nano-centers around Russia. Originally it was supposed to be in the town of Gatchina. In 2015 it was opened in St. Petersburg on Malookhtenskii Prospect. Another joint project with Rusnano is “Innograd of Science and Technologies.” It is expected to open by 2019 in the satellite city “Yuzhni”. Rusnano is investing 690 million rubles in its equipment. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2015 in the town of Pushkin, near St. Petersburg.

n 2012, a “Skolkovo” communications center was supposed to open on the campus of the former Institute of Refrigeration and Biotechnologies of ITMO, but the plans were altered. In 2013, Internet Initiatives Development Fund offered ITMO University to collaborate in opening regional accelerators to support commercially promising internet startups. ITMO University is also a venture partner of Russian Venture Company since 2013.

University's list of international partners over the years includes General Motors Corp., PPG, Samsung Electro-Mechanics, Nokia and others.

Research and development work is carried out in the university's own research departments: Research Institute of Nanophotonics and Optical Information Technology, Research Institute of High-Tech Computer Technology, Institute of Laser Physics, Research Institute of Testing and Monitoring in Scientific and Technical Centers, "Optical Information Technologies and Systems" and "Information Optical Technologies", as well as in the educational, scientific and production center" Russar "and others. By 2014, the university has 49 international research centers.

Research Institute “Information and Control Systems” participated in several international seminars and conferences in 2014, including:

  • DDPT 2014: International Seminar: «Descriptive DataProcessing Techniques».
  • Workshop on Algebraic Design Theory and Hadamard Matrices (ADTHM) 2014.
  • Multi-theme Conference Smart Digital Futures 2014.

Students and staff members of over 80 departments participate in research. Many of them are working in “small innovative enterprises,” or startups, located at ITMO Technopark on Birzhevaya Liniya, offering access to high-tech equipment.

As part of the Project 5-100, Technopark opened a coworking space called FabLab in 2015, which also offers facilities and resources, including a 3D printer, a laser engraver, a milling machine, etc. The equipment is offered free of charge to the ITMO University specialists and students.

National Research University Program

In 2009, the university was granted the status of National Research University. It implies carrying out research in areas considered key to the development of Russia's economy, including IT, photonics, optoinformatics, and urban science.

International Research Centers

As part of the Project 5-100, the university created international research centers to carry out joint research between scientists at ITMO and their peers at foreign research and education centers. By 2014 the university had established 49 such entities with co-heads from USA, UK, Germany, Australia, China, etc.

In order to strengthen governmental support for the development of science and innovations in higher education and to improve the quality of higher education, on April 9, 2010, the Government of the Russian Federation instituted monetary grants that are made available on a competitive basis to support of scientific research projects implemented by the world's leading scientists at Russian institutions of higher learning. From some 507 applications, 39 were awarded funding, including two from ITMO University. In 2013 ITMO University won two more mega-grants from the Ministry of Education and Science of Russia Federation.


The university is a member of the Library Association of Russia, St. Petersburg Library Society, National Electronic Information Consortium, and the Association of Regional Library Consortiums. The ITMO University library offers access to Russian and foreign full-text and reference electronic resources, including Web of Science, Conference Proceedings Citation, Journal Citation Reports, Scopus, ScienceDirect, Springer, ACM, OSA, SPIE, eLibrary, etc.


ITMO University has three museums. “Museum of ITMO University History” is located in the building on Pereulok Grivtzova.

The Museum of Optics was established in 2006 and is located on the first floor of the Eliseev House on Birzhevaya Linia. With support from the Hellenic Institute of Holography, ITMO University opened an exhibition “Magic of Light” in July 2015. The Eliseev House was selected for the exhibition because it used to house the office of Prof. Denisuk, the founder of image holography. It features over 200 holograms, including OptoClones of Imperial Fabergé eggs, Oculus Rift virtual reality glasses and much more. The inner courtyard houses Lux Aeterna Laser Theater.

The Museum of the Institute of Refrigeration and Biotechnologies, dating back to 1936, is located in a historic building on Lomonosova Street.

In 2012 the university won a competition by a Committee on Investments to come up with a concept of an interactive museum of science and technology that will be built on the grounds of the former tram park on Vasilyevsky Island.

In Lakhta Center, ITMO University is building one of the largest children's science museums in the country, around 7,000 sq. m., with support of Saint Petersburg government.

Student life

The university has a variety of student organizations: student unions, including those for foreign students, student clubs, a student orchestra, student radio, a student scientific society, volunteer center and others.
Many of these organizations get together in coworking spaces around the campus. The students can use these spaces for their own projects, but some, such as SumIT, require a prior interview.
The university has two assembly halls that can hold up to 500 people each. Other activity spaces include a soundproof room for singing lessons, an audio recording studio, a studio for “Megabyte” internet radio and editorial office of “NewTone” magazine.


The university offers accommodations in six dorms. Depending on a student's individual circumstances, accommodation may also be provided at the Inter-university student campus.


The university has its own sporting infrastructure. Sports clubs are located on Vjazemsky Pereulok and Lomonosova Street, and there's also a sportsground by the main building. The university also owns a recreational facility “Yagodnoe” located by the Berestovoe Lake, in the suburb of Saint Petersburg. There students can do windsurfing, kayaking, biking and rock climbing.
One of student organizations is “Kronverksky Leopards” sports club. It offers 21 activities, including basketball, volleyball, mountain skiing, tennis, swimming, cheerleading and others. The university also rents “Petrogradetz” sports club, swimming pools, ice rinks and gyms.
The university's mini football team got a silver medal at 2013 “Golden League” championship and took bronze in 2015.
In July 2015, university's rector Vladimir Vasilyev led several bike rides on Elagin Island.

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