Inhabitants of closed nuclear cities in the Russian Federation have been given the opportunity to develop their managerial skills, thanks to an innovative distance learning programme.

The Open University Business School, along with its Russian partner organisation, the International Institute of Management Link, have produced programmes aimed at people who wish to change careers, as the nuclear weapons industry declines.

More than 20 people in Zheleznogorsk – one of the closed cities – have studied with Link on the Professional Certificate in Management programme.

The course is delivered in Russian and gives participants an introduction to concepts and management techniques for today’s organisations.

The course forms part of the UK-Russian Federation Closed Nuclear Cities Partnership (CNCP), managed on behalf of the Department of Trade and Industry by HTSPE, an international consultancy company.

The CNCP programme is intended to promote the growth of alternative employment opportunities for nuclear workers within the 10 closed nuclear cities of the Russian Federation – cities where the former Soviet Union designed and produced its nuclear weapons stockpile.

A further 44 employees from nuclear research institutes in Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan are also studying for the certificate.

James Fleck, dean at OUBS, says the project is an example of OUBS’s commitment to the university’s mission “to be open to all”.

“The school’s partnership with Link is one of the most significant of the school’s international links and it is particularly gratifying to see this activity extended further into such a worthwhile exercise.”

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