Saint-Petersburg Electrotechnical University "LETI" (ETU) was founded in 1886 as Engineering College of the Department of Post and Telegraph of Russia.
In 1891 it was reorganized into Imperial Institute of Electrical Engineering – the first higher education institution in Europe for training engineers and research in the field of Electrical Engineering.
Professor of physics Alexander Popov, the inventor of radio, was the first elected director of Institute.
From the moment of its foundation Institute was recognized as a center of Electrical Engineering in Russia. Many outstanding Russian scientists worked here.
In the first half of the 20th century acknowledged scientific schools were established in Institute: Electrical Engineering, Electrical Communication and Radio Engineering, Electric Power Engineering and Electrochemistry, Electrovacuum Engineering, Electrical Drives, Ultrasonic Defectoscopy, High Frequency Electrothermy.
In the twenties of the 20th century Electrotechnical Institute played a significant role in development of electrification plans of Russia.
After the Second World War intensive development of new scientific fields was started at Institute: Radio Electronics and Cybernetics, Electrification and Automatization of Industrial Equipment, Automatics and Telemechanics, Computer Science, Optoelectronics.
In early 90s Institute launched new fields of study – Humanities and Economics. In 1990 International School of Management was established, in 1993 the Faculty of Humanities was opened and in 1999 the Faculty of Economics and Management was organized.
In 1992 Institute was granted the university status and became the first Electrotechnical University in Russia.