Ural Federal University

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Ural Federal University (UrFU)
Уральский федеральный университет имени первого Президента России Б.Н. Ельцина
Main university building.
Latin: Universitas Uralensis
Former names
Ural State University, Ural State Technical University
MottoRussian: Думай, делай, достигай!
Latin: Cogitare, agere, consequi!
Motto in English
Think, act, achieve![1]
Established1920 (established), 2011 (integrated)
EndowmentRUB 57.2 million (~USD 871 thousand) (April 2016)[2]
PresidentStanislav Naboychenko (until 2013)
RectorVictor Koksharov
Academic staff
5157 (April 2016)
Students33220 (April 2016)
Location, ,
56°50′38″N 60°39′14″E / 56.8440°N 60.6539°E / 56.8440; 60.6539Coordinates: 56°50′38″N 60°39′14″E / 56.8440°N 60.6539°E / 56.8440; 60.6539
AffiliationsUniversity of the Arctic,[3] Association of Sino-Russian Technical Universities,[4] Russian Council on International Affairs,[5] The Euroasian Universities Association,[6] Association of technical universities of Russia and China,[7] International Association of Architecture and Construction Higher Educational Institutions, Association of Russian leading Universities,[8] Erasmus Plus,[9] BRICS Network University, SCO Network University, CIS University[10]
Ural Federal University (eng).jpg

The Ural Federal University named after the first President of Russia B. N. Yeltsin (Уральский федеральный университет имени первого Президента России Б.Н. Ельцина, Uralʹskiĭ federalʹnyĭ universitet imeni pervogo Prezidenta Rossii B.N. Yelʹtsina, often shortened to UrFU, УрФУ) (formed by a merger of the Ural State Technical University and Ural State University) is one of the leading educational institutions in the Ural region. Ural Federal University acts as a research and innovation center of the Ural region and has close cooperation with the Russian Academy of Sciences. Training of students is carried out in four main areas of knowledge and 108 academic majors,[11] the links between the university and intermediate educational institutions are actively developed. The University also performs consistent work on establishing strategic partnership with employers for the sake of development of the regional economy: employers are involved in the educational environment as direct participants, large-scale enployers-sponsored and corporate education is carried out based on the client-centered approach, joint business projects in economic and social areas are realized.


The Ural University was established in the town of Ekaterinburg in 1920 by the decree of the head of Soviet revolutionary government Vladimir Lenin. However, the newly-born university underwent a number of changes due to the lack of resources in such circumstances as revolution and civil war. Finally, the university split into two: Ural State University (USU), a smaller university responsible for education in natural sciences, social sciences and humanities, and Ural Polytechnic Institute (USTU-UPI), a larger one which was focused on training engineers in areas such as metallurgy, machine-building, civil engineering and energetics. At the same time, UPI was developing several new (for the time) areas of knowledge like nuclear energetics, organic chemistry and synthesis, and telecommunications.

Despite such partition, both universities were connected closely with each other, as well as with their partners from the region’s industrial economy. Due to this fact, Ekaterinburg became one of the largest university cities of Russia, since 2008, when a massive reorganization of Russian university system was launched, a number of universities in different cities of the country which already had close relations have received special federal status and additional funding. Federal universities were established in Rostov-na-Donu, Krasnoyarsk, Kazan, Archangelsk, Yakutsk, Kaliningrad, Vladivostok and Ekaterinburg. These federal universities are the leaders of Russian educational system, the merger process of USTU-UPI and USU to create Ural Federal University (UrFU) began in 2009 and was fully completed by the spring of 2011.

During the 95 years of its history, Ural University has produced more than 300,000 graduates, many of whom became successful in research, culture, and politics. One of the most famous graduates of the university is the first President of Russia, Boris Yeltsin, whose name the university bears nowadays.

The Supervisory Board[edit]

In accordance with the Federal Law of 03.11.2006 № 174-FZ "About autonomous institutions", a supervisory board was created in UrFU. As of April 2016, it consists of:

  • Mikhail Alashkevich, Director of the Department of Finance, Organization of Budgeting, Methodology and Economy of Science and Education;
  • Andrey Kozitsyn, General Director of UMMC-Holding;
  • Evgeny Kuyvashev, Governor of Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • Yaroslav Kuzminov, Rector of the National Research University – Higher School of Economics;
  • Anatoly Matern, Head of Academic Department of Analytical Chemistry at UrFU;
  • Aleksey Rogov, Head of the Territorial Directorate of the Federal Agency for State Property Management;
  • Aleksandr Povalko, Deputy Minister of Education and Science of the Russian Federation;
  • Dmitry Pumpyansky, President of the Sverdlovsk Oblast Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs;
  • Valery Charushin, Chairman of the Presidium of the Ural Branch of RAS;
  • Arkady Chernetsky, Member of the Federation Council of Federal Assembly of Russian Federation;
  • Tatyana Yumasheva, Director of the Сharitable foundation of the first President of Russia Boris Yeltsin.

Structure of the university[edit]

Institutes and departments[edit]

Ural Federal University consists of the following Institutes and Departments:

  • Faculty of Accelerated Learning
  • Graduate Engineering School
  • Graduate School of Economics and Management
  • Institute of Chemical Engineering
  • Institute of Civil Engineering
  • Institute of Fundamental Education
  • Institute of Further Education and Vocational Training
  • Institute of Humanities and Arts
  • Institute of Material Sciences and Metallurgy
  • Institute of Mathematics and Computer Sciences
  • Institute of Mechanics and Machine Building
  • Institute of Military Technical Education and Security
  • Institute of Natural Sciences
  • Institute of Open Educetional Technologies
  • Institute of Physical Education, Sport and Youth Policy
  • Institute of Physics and Technology
  • Institute of Public Administration and Entrepreneurship
  • Institute of Radioelectronics and Information Technologies
  • Institute of Social and Political Sciences
  • Ural Power Engineering Institute

Institutions of intermediate education[edit]

  • Specialized Educational and Scientific Center of UrFU
  • UrFU Lyceum
Dmitry Medvedev and Angela Merkel at the "Petersburg Dialogue" Russian-German forum in 2010

Facts and Figures[edit]

Ural Federal University is one of Russia's biggest research and educational centers, the number of full-time students studying at UrFU exceeds 33,000 (April 2016). They come from 80 countries of the world, and are taught by more than 4,200 teachers. 360 Russian and English-taught educational programs are provided by 17 institutes and include courses in natural sciences, engineering, social sciences, humanities, economics and management. More than 300,000 people have graduated from Ural Federal University over the years, since 2008, the university has been bearing the name of Boris Yeltsin – graduate of 1955, who was elected first President of independent Russia in 1991.

During an academic year, the university is attended by more than 20 international delegations, among them – ambassadors of the US, France, United Kingdom, Sweden, The Republic of South Africa, Mongolia and others.

The first international students arrived at Ural University in the 1940s, during 95 years of the university’s history, more than 2,500 specialists from Europe, Asia and Africa graduated from it. Today, there are about 1,700 international students studying at UrFU.

The sport facilities of UrFU allow more than 30 teams to train and compete in different tournaments. University is home to several popular festivals, among which are one of the oldest student festivals of Russia, “Vesna UPI” (literally, “The Ural Polytechnic Spring”), which goes back to 1956, and the Vienna Music Film Festival.

International Partnership[edit]

One more important direction of activity is integration of Ural Federal University into the international research and educational environment, the university participates in network educational projects (Shanghai Cooperation Organization, European Union, UNESCO, BRICS). UrFU is a key partner in the Ural region for foreign universities, international organizations, foreign companies and corporations, the number of foreign students, post-graduates, researches and lecturers is constantly growing. UrFU works on the basis of the framework agreements with the market leaders in Russia and foreign countries (Kazakhstan, China etc.)

In 2011, Ural Federal University together with Ariel University Center[12] signed a cooperation agreement with the Skolkovo innovation center known as "Russian Silicon Valley". Following this agreement, the "Center of Israel – Scolkovo" (Israel Skolkovo Gateway) will be formed to give Israeli companies the opportunity to access capital resources and manpower of Scolkovo.[13]

The university has an exchange program with Germany, proposed in a meeting between Russian president Vladimir Putin and German chancellor Angela Merkel,[14] the program’s focus will include each country’s literature and language in the other’s country (i.e., Russian literature and language in Germany, and vice versa). German officials have also participated in the university’s International Strategic Council of UrFU Competitiveness Enhancement Program,[15] the university has also partnered with the Baku Slavic University to build an Azerbaijan Studies Center.[16]

UrFU scientist Victor Grohovsky talks to press during presentation of analysis results of the samples of Chebarkul meteorite


Main directions of scientific research whose results are widely recognized:

  • Physics and astronomy: the condensed matter physics, physics of magnetic materials, optics and laser physics, radio physics, electronics, acoustics, quantum theory of solids; spectroscopy of activated crystals, fundamental studies of properties of materials under extreme conditions, the physics of low-temperature and nonideal plasma and its use in power engineering and clean technologies; theoretical and experimental thermal physics, physical gas-kinetics and surface physics, physico-chemical mechanics of heterogeneous and multiphase media, stellar astronomy.
  • Power engineering: development of scientific principles of energy policy and mechanisms for its realization under market economy conditions, the fundamental problem of creating a safe and clean energy (including nuclear and fusion energy), non-conventional energy conversion processes, the fundamental problems of energy conservation and fuel efficiency.
  • Metallurgy: the development of resource-saving and environmentally friendly processes of complex processing of ores and its wastes, the creation of new metallic materials with the desired properties.
  • Сommunication technologies: integrated information and telecommunications networks and systems, the mathematical theory of pattern recognition.
  • Mathematics and Mechanics: the theory of control and differential games, theory of algebraic systems and its applications to computer systems, the theory of functions and operators, the fundamental problem of construction of systems of automatic designing, mathematical methods of research of nonlinear control systems and processes, mathematical modeling in medicine.
  • Chemistry and Materials Science: Theory of chemical bonding, kinetics and mechanisms of chemical reactions, solid state chemistry, chemistry of radioactive elements, physico-chemistry of polymers, the development of methods for the directed synthesis of complex organic molecules in order to obtain physiologically active substances with a selective effect, the development of the fundamentals of catalysis and the creation of highly efficient and selective heterogeneous, homogeneous and enzymatic catalysts and catalytic systems, the creation of chemical current sources, the creation of structural ceramics and silicate materials with sufficient ductility on the basis of oxides, nitrides, carbides, oxycarbonitrides.
  • Biology: population and evolutionary ecology, animal ecology, environmental forecasting and assessment, plant physiology and studies of photosynthesis, industrial botany, ornithology.
  • Philosophy and sociology: the history of philosophy, philosophical anthropology, epistemology, aesthetics, social philosophy, sociology of the individual.
  • History and Ethnography: Source Studies, Archaeology and Social History of Byzantium, Ural and Siberian Archeology and Ethnography, Siberian and Ural archaeography; social history of the Urals and Siberia, theory and history of international relations.
  • Philology: onomastics, dialect lexicology and lexicography, lexical semantics, linguistics and stylistics, folklore and literature of the Urals and Siberia, Russian classical and modern literature, literary stylistics, theory and history of journalism.
  • Economics: Regional Economics, competition and institutional aspects of economic growth, foreign investment and international transfer of technology, corporate governance, economic history and the history of economic thought, mathematical methods in economics.


UrFU Alumni Association was established in October 2012; in 2012-2013 the University established offices of the Alumni association in Mongolia, Moscow, Nizhny Tagil, Kamensk-Uralsky and Noyabrsk; it allows the graduates living and working in these countries and cities to maintain contact with the university. It also plans to establish offices in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Israel and Germany.


Ural Federal University currently holds the following positions in national and global rankings:

  • placed 1156th in the Best Global Universities category in the U.S. News & World Report, 2018.[17]
  • placed 701-800th in the Academic Ranking of World Universities, 2018.[18]
  • placed below the top 1,000 in the Center for World University Rankings.[19]
  • placed 7th among Russian universities (Webometrics Ranking of World Universities)
  • top-10 best Russian universities (“Expert RA” rating agency);
  • top-60 of the best universities of the Emerging Europe and Central Asia (QS Quacquarelli Symonds);
  • placed 13th in the ranking of national universities by the Interfax Rating Agency;
  • placed 77th among BRICS countries universities (QS World University Rankings: BRICS);
  • placed 3rd as per the number of patents among companies in Russia (The Research & innovation performance of the G20 (Russia) — Thomson Reuters).

Awards and achievements[edit]

The "Dedicatied to Young People" short film, which features Ural Federal University graduates giving advice to the current UrFU students, won the ‘Most Creative Corporate Institution Video’ QS-Apple Creative Award and received the title of QS-Apple Creative Idol, the contest was held on November 17, 2011, at the 7th QS Asia Pacific Professional Leaders in Education Conference and Exhibition, in Manila (Philippines), and was organized by Quacquarelli Symonds.[20]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ https://www.4icu.org/reviews/4136.htm Ural Federal University, ranking and review
  2. ^ http://urfu.ru/ru/ehndaument/ University's endowment
  3. ^ http://www.uarctic.org/members.aspx?m=1053 Archived 2012-12-28 at Archive.today UrFU profile (eng)
  4. ^ http://asrtu.ru/sostav.html Archived 2012-07-10 at Archive.today ASRTU: membership (rus)
  5. ^ http://russiancouncil.ru/about-us/corporate_members_RSMD/ Russian Council on International Affairs: corporate members (rus)
  6. ^ http://www.eau-msu.ru/heis/view/102 Euroasian Universities Association: UrFU (rus)
  7. ^ http://pr.bmstu.ru/?p=5125[permanent dead link] ATURC was created
  8. ^ http://www.eureca-usrf.org/en/news/news/detail.php?element_id=2958 Archived 2016-03-03 at the Wayback Machine. The Association of Leading Russian Universities Visits the United States (eng)
  9. ^ http://urfu.ru/en/news/news/6425/ UrFU + Erasmus Plus
  10. ^ https://www.timeshighereducation.com/world-university-rankings/ural-federal-university Ural Federal University World University Rankings | THE
  11. ^ UrFU list of academic majors (rus), (Retrieved 2016-04-20)
  12. ^ [1] Archived 2011-12-07 at the Wayback Machine. Your Way to Russian Silicon Valley
  13. ^ "Israel Skolkovo Gateway". Israelsk.com. Retrieved 24 September 2011.
  14. ^ Mills, Thomas. "UrFU, German consulate establish student exchange program". CIS Tran Finance. 2014-02-17 (Retrieved 2014-02-17)
  15. ^ "Russia-Germany Cross-Year" (Press release). Yekaterinburg, Russia: Ural Federal University. 2014-02-14. Retrieved 2014-02-17.
  16. ^ "Azerbaijan studies center opens at UrFU". Azer News. 2014-02-13 (Retrieved 2014-02-17)
  17. ^ Ural Federal University.
  18. ^ ARWU World Top 500-100 Candidates 2018.
  19. ^ CWUR World University Rankings 2018-2019
  20. ^ http://www.qsapple.org/7thqsapple/winner.php Winners of QS-APPLE Creative Awards 2011