The United States rejoined the five most-innovative nations and the United Kingdom moved up to the third spot while Switzerland retained its place atop the rankings in the Global Innovation Index 2013, published by Cornell University, INSEAD, and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
Despite the economic crisis, innovation is alive and well. Research and development spending levels are surpassing 2008 levels in most countries and successful local hubs are thriving. A group of dynamic middle- and low-income countries including China, Costa Rica, India, and Senegal - are outpacing their peers, but havent broken into the top of the GII 2013 leader board. This years report casts additional light on the local dynamics of innovation, an area which has remained under-measured globally. It shows the emergence of original innovation eco-systems, and signals a needed shift from a usual tendency to try and duplicate previously successful initiatives.
Dynamic innovation hubs are multiplying around the world despite the difficult state of the global economy. These hubs leverage local advantages with a global outlook on markets and talent. said WIPO Director General Francis Gurry. For national-level policy makers seeking to support innovation, realizing the full potential of innovation in their own backyards is often a more promising approach than trying to emulate successful innovation models elsewhere.
The GII 2013 looked at 142 economies around the world, using 84 indicators including the quality of top universities, availability of microfinance, venture capital deals - gauging both innovation capabilities and measurable results. Published annually since 2007, the GII has become a chief benchmarking tool for business executives, policy makers and others seeking insight into the state of innovation around the world. This years study benefits from the experience of its Knowledge Partners: Booz & Company, the Confederation of Indian Industry, du and Huawei, as well as of an advisory board of 14 international experts. United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon joined the authors of the report and its Knowledge Partners in presenting the GII 2013 findings at the High-Level Segment of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). The High Level Segment, held July 1-4 in Geneva, brings together heads of state, ministers and heads of international agencies, this year focusing in particular on the role of science, technology and innovation and the potential of culture in achieving the Millennium Development Goals and promoting sustainable development.
Switzerland and Swedens performance reflects the fact that both countries are leaders in all components (pillars) of the GII, consistently ranking in the top 25. The United Kingdom has a well-balanced innovation performance (ranking 4th in both input and output), in spite of a relatively low level of growth in labor productivity. The United States continues to benefit from its strong education base (especially in terms of top-rank universities), and has seen strong increases in software spending and employment in knowledge-intensive services. The US was last in the GII top 5 in 2009, when it was number one.
The results of the GII provide testimony to the global nature of innovation today. The top 25 ranked countries on the GII are a mix of nations from across the world North America, Europe, Asia, Oceania and the Middle East. While high income economies dominate the list, several new players have increased their innovation capabilities and outputs. On average, high-income countries outpace developing countries by a wide margin across the board in terms of scores; a persistent innovation divide exists, stressed Mr. Soumitra Dutta, co-editor of the report and Anne and Elmer Lindseth Dean, Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management, Cornell University.
Business, government and civil society all offer new solutions and fresh ways of collaborating to spur innovation at local, national and even global levels, said Mr. Bruno Lanvin, the reports co-editor and Executive Director of INSEADs European Competitiveness Initiative. In fact, innovation is rapidly becoming a rallying symbol for forces of progress and reform around the world. Although our findings show that daunting challenges remain for many new players, we also see exciting examples of innovation success, including in some of the poorest countries. This is a source of optimism about the future of global innovation and economic recovery.