The article reviews the activities of scientific engineering and technical societies (SETS (NITO)) in the Tatar ASSR in the late 1940s – early 1950s as an element of the general Soviet scientific and technical policy aimed at accelerating scientific and technological progress through the mass involvement of people in creating inventions. The article deals with a brief history of the engineering societies and shows the organizational structure of NITO, and their main goals and objectives. Establishing Tatar Republican Council of NITO is seen as a part of a common state policy aimed at integrating scientific and technical community and organizing effective inter-sectoral communications. The research is based on archival material and studies how the objectives of engineering societies were implemented in a particular region of the USSR and what successes and problems in their work appeared. It is shown that huge efforts and enthusiasm of scientific and technical personnel, stimulation of innovation and invention through organizing a socialist competition gave economic results, such as saving resources, increasing productivity, etc. However, the research also shows that, together with successes, serious organizational and methodical problems appeared in everyday life of engineering societies, which the societies could not resolve by themselves. In particular, the creation of new coordinating bodies (such as the Tatar Republican Council of Scientific and Engineering Societies) was not fruitful because the Council had no real power and leverage over the governing structures and sectors of NITO. The introduction of inventions was often postponed due to the necessity of coordination with different organizations and because of weak material base of NITO. The weak point of the governing bodies of NITO was the poor support to ordinary members of the societies. Thus, we can conclude that the attempt to integrate the scientific and technical community and to establish inter-branch communications through the creation of a single governing body in the republic was progressive but the ways of implementation of the idea had obvious flaws.
Key words: scientific engineering and technical societies, rationalization, invention, dissemination of advanced industrial practice, Tatar ASSR.