Innovation Nations: Global Innovation Index Ranking Places Switzerland in Top Spot

Switzerland is the world’s most-innovative country, according to an annual report published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Switzerland was ranked in the top spot year prior as well in the 2019 edition of the Global Innovation Index (GII).

Following in 2nd and 3rd place is Sweden and the US, respectively.

Sweden was ranked in 3rd spot last year. The US moved up from 6th place year prior.

To round out the top ten, the countries are ranked as follows:

  1. Switzerland (year prior ranking 1)
  2. Sweden (3)
  3. United States of America (6)
  4. Netherlands (2)
  5. United Kingdom (4)
  6. Finland (7)
  7. Denmark (8)
  8. Singapore (5)
  9. Germany (9)
  10. Israel (11)

The GII 2019 ranks 129 economies based on 80 different indicators. WIPO uses various criteria to rank innovation, such as patents/trademarks, R&D and high tech exports. The report notes that global trade tensions demand “sound government planning” to keep innovation going.

Key findings included in the report, are as follows:

  • The global landscape of science, innovation, and technology has undergone important shifts over the last decades. Middle-income economies, especially in Asia, are increasingly contributing to global research and development (R&D) and international patenting rates via WIPO’s International Patent System;
  • The GII 2019 shows that public R&D expenditures – particularly in some high-income economies – are growing slowly or not at all. This raises concerns given the public sector’s central role in funding basic R&D and blue-sky research, which are key to future innovations;
  • Increased protectionism poses risks. If left uncontained, it will lead to a slowdown of growth in innovation productivity and diffusion across the globe;
  • Innovation inputs and outputs are still concentrated in very few economies. Divides also persist in how effectively economies obtain return on their innovation investments. Some economies achieve more with less;
  • Most top science and technology clusters are in the U.S., China, and Germany, whlie Brazil, India, Iran, the Russian Federation, and Turkey also feature in the top 100 list. The top five clusters: Tokyo-Yokohama (Japan); Shenzhen-Hong Kong, China (China); Seoul (Republic of Korea); Beijing (China); San Jose-San Francisco (U.S.).

Switzerland has ranked 1st in the “Innovation Output Sub-Index and in the Knowledge and technology output pillar” since 2012. In the quality of innovation, Switzerland is ranked 4th worldwide. The US ranked in the top spot for quality of innovation.

The GII Index was completed with the assistance of Cornell University and INSEAD.

The entire ranking is below and the complete report is available here.


WIPO Global Innovation Index 2019 pr_2019_834_annex1

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