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Program to Get Russian Universities Into Global Top 100 Faces Setback

The Moscow State University

The Russian government has cut $40 million out of funding for a program helping local universities break into the world's top 100 best higher education institutions, the Interfax news agency reported Thursday, citing Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

Russia will allocate 10 billion rubles ($200 million) to the program, down from the 12 billion rubles ($240 million) initially planned, Interfax reported,

President Vladimir Putin launched the program in 2012 with the aim of getting five universities into the world's top 100 by 2020. The next year the government allocated 15 Russian universities 9 billion rubles ($180 million) in funding. Last year the government upped the amount to 10.5 billion rubles ($210 million).

The money this year will be distributed between 14 universities that demonstrate good growth and educational potential, Interfax reported Medvedev as saying at a government meeting.

Russian universities typically fair poorly in international rankings, with no schools present in the Times Higher Education's prestigious 2014-15 top 100 ranking.

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