The basis for making state decisions in the scientific and technical sphere is planning and forecasting. Forecasting the development of science and technology in the republic is carried out through a system of private forecasts (on the most important problems of socio-economic, scientific-technical and structural-investment policy) and through a comprehensive forecast of scientific and technological development. A comprehensive forecast, or a comprehensive program of scientific and technological progress (KP STP) until 2020, is the most important forecast document reflecting the priority directions for the development of science and technology, justifying practical measures that ensure their maximum possible and effective use in the national economy.
recommendations on the dynamics, structure and use of the scientific and educational potential of the country, on the basis of which the priorities of individual areas of R&D are formed; proposals on the main directions of structural policy, i.e. on the formation of the main directions of the STP and the appropriate distribution of labor, material and financial resources (it is in the distribution of resources that the principle of priority is practically implemented); substantiation of economic, organizational and other necessary prerequisites for accelerating the STP in the selected directions.
The comprehensive forecast includes proposals for the development of scientific and technical programs; substantiation of the national economic significance of solving scientific and technical problems; characterization of the main content of the planned technical shifts; requirements for R&D, related areas of science and technology development; assessment of the timing and scale of solving scientific and technical problems, the costs of their implementation and implementation, the expected socio-economic effect; recommendations on material and organizational support of scientific and technical programs.
The comprehensive forecast of scientific and technological progress of the Republic of Belarus until 2020 provides for the development of the national innovation system as a purposefully organized mechanism of relations between all participants in the innovation process, ensuring the build-up of scientific and technical potential with the orientation of scientific research and development in the interests of the development of the Belarusian economy. The directions of development of scientific and technical programs presented in the comprehensive forecast are global in nature within the framework of the long-term development strategy of the republic and serve as the basis for determining the directions for the development of innovative activities, highlighting and justifying priorities for the near future.
The procedure and organizational and methodological foundations for the development of a comprehensive forecast are determined by the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus. When developing private forecasts, the objects of forecasting can be various directions of scientific and technological progress, as well as the main stages of the scientific and technological cycle.
If we present scientific and technological progress through stages consistently developing in time (fundamental and applied research; design, technological, design and organizational developments; production and operation), then the tasks of forecasting and the choice of forecasting methods are determined by the specifics of the corresponding stage of development of the forecasting object. At the same time, the reliability of forecast estimates, as a rule, is determined by comparing the results obtained by applying several forecasting methods.
When developing forecasts, various forecasting methods are used: extrapolation, expert assessments, analogies, script writing, analysis of publications and others. However, the most common are the following:
when forecasting fundamental and applied research, the method of system analysis and synthesis, methods of expert assessments, script writing, morphological analysis are used. The possibility of using formalized methods at this stage is limited due to the lack of initial data and the heterogeneity of the nature of the ongoing processes; at the development stage, extrapolation methods, methods of expert assessments, the method of cross-sectoral balance, as well as methods based on the analysis of patent documentation and scientific and technical information are used; at the stage of production and operation, methods of expert assessments, extrapolation, factor and simulation models are effective. A special place in the forecasts is occupied by the system of balance settlements: intersectoral balance, labor balance, fixed asset balance, production capacity balances, material and value balances.
The main method of planning the development of scientific and technological progress is the program-target method. It is implemented through scientific and technical programs developed on the most important problems and the most promising areas of science and technology, which are of national importance and interdisciplinary nature. The program-target method can be considered as a key way of direct state regulation of innovation processes and state priorities.
Scientific and technical programs are a targeted planning document that provides for a set of tasks and measures for the implementation of research, design, construction and production works on the organization of production of new types of products or products with new properties that are interrelated in terms of resources, executors and deadlines. Scientific and technical programs are developed to solve the most important national economic, environmental, social and defense problems. There are state, sectoral, regional and interstate scientific and technical programs.
State scientific and technical programs organize the interaction of science and production in order to progressively innovative development of the leading sectors of the economy. Their use makes it possible to ensure in a given time frame the concentration of efforts and funds of centralized sources, as well as funds of scientific organizations, enterprises of various departmental subordination to solve problems that represent vital priorities of socio-economic development and security of the country.
The list of state programs, the procedure for their development, implementation and financing is determined by the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus. The list of State scientific and technical programmes developed for 2001-2005 includes programmes to address the most significant national economic, environmental and social problems in priority areas of scientific and technical activity. They are distinguished by their focus on the final stage of the innovation cycle, on the creation of specific technological innovations.
The Program of Material and Technical Re-Equipment of Scientific Organizations for 2001 is aimed at strengthening and developing the material and technical base of scientific organizations.
An important role in the development of innovation activity in the republic was played by the Program for the Development of Innovative Activities in the Republic of Belarus, approved by the Government in 1996 and designed for 1996-1997. Its goal was to create economic, legal, financial, organizational and other conditions that ensure the accelerated development and development of product competitiveness and assistance on this basis to the structural restructuring and development of the republic’s economy. The implementation of this program laid the foundations for the development of innovative activities in the republic.
Sectoral and regional programs are developed and implemented by the relevant governing bodies.
The scheme of preliminary study and content of state scientific and technical programs includes:
scientific, technical and technical-economic expertise of projects; competitive selection; formation of a state order for the implementation of scientific and technical projects.