Vladimir Konstantinovich Bagirov was born to an Armenian father and a Ukrainian mother in Baku on August 16, 1936.
He was a Soviet-Azerbajani-Latvian Grandmaster who competed in nine Soviet championships between 1960 and 1978.
His chess coach and trainer was Vladimir Makogonov (1904-1993).
He was a chess journalist and engineer by training.
In 1961, he was on the winning Soviet team in the European Team Championship, played in Oberhausen.
In 1961, he was on the winning Soviet team that played in the 8th World Student Team Chess Championship in Helsinki. He won a gold medal on board 2 (board 1 was Leonid Stein).
In 1962, he was on the winning Soviet team that played in the 9th World Student Team Chess Championship in Marianske Lazne. He played board 3 (Spassky played board 1 and Gufeld played board 2).
In 1963 he played board 1 for the Soviet team in the 10th World Student Team Chess Championship in Budva.
Chessmetrics has him rated #20 in the world in 1961 and rated as high as 2680 in 1978. His best performancer ating was 2742 in the USSR Championship in 1960.
In 1963, he was awarded the International Master title.
In 1978, he was awarded the Grandmaster title at the age of 42.
He was a chess coach for Mikhail Tal, Garry Kasparov, Alexei Shirov, and Alexander Shabalov.
In 1975 he was the Azerbaijan national coach. He later moved to Latvia in the lates 1970s following a dispute with chess officials.
In 1998 he won the 8th World Senior Chess Championship, held in Grieskirchen, Austria.
He died of a heart attack while playing in the Heart of Finland Open chess tournament in Jyvaskyla, Finland. He started with three wins out of three games to take the lead in the tournament. In his fourth game, he had just finished a move against Teemu Laasanian while in time pressure and his flag fell. As both players moved to a separate board to reconstruct the game (Bagirov had a winning position after ...Qe4 - see diagram), he collapsed and died the next day of a cerebral hemorrhage. He died on July 21, 2000.
Best results in international tournaments: Adelaide 1960 - 2nd; Jakarta 1960 - 1st; Moscow 1960 - 4th; Baku 1964 - 1st; Batumi 1966 - 1st; Moscow 1968 - 1st; Polanica-Zdroj 1969 - 5th; Baya 1971 - 1st; Tbilisi 1971 - 1st; Tbilisi 1974 - 3rd; Start Smokovec 1981 - 1st; Cascais 1986 - 1st.
His results in the USSR Championship are as follows:
1960 - 27th USSR Ch, 4th place (behind Korchnoi, Petrosian and Geller)
1961 - 29th USSR Ch, 20th-21st
1963 - 31st USSR Ch, 11th
1967 - 35th USSR Ch, 8th-17th
1968 - 36th USSR Ch, 15th-17th
1970 - 38th USSR Ch, 10th-12th
1972 - 40th USSR Ch, 8th-9th
1977 - 45th USSR Ch, 5th-7th
1978 - 46th USSR Ch, 10th-13th
He wrote English Opening, Classical and Indian (1994), English Opening, Symmetrical (1995), and Queen's Gambit Declined, Exchange Variation, CD-ROM(2000)