Innovation Continued Despite COVID-19: New UN Report |

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According to the findings of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO) latest Global Innovation Index, governments and businesses in many parts of the world have stepped up their investments in innovation, demonstrating that they recognize that new ideas are essential to overcome the pandemic.

“We were expecting a sharp drop of around 3% in 2020, however, the GII shows there is reason for optimism… editor-in-chief said at the report’s launch in Geneva.

Uneven impact

The PMOI has warned, however, that the impact of the crisis has been very uneven across sectors and countries.

In its annual ranking of the world’s economies on innovation capacity and production, the GII showed that only a few, mostly high-income economies consistently dominate the ranks.

However, the Republic of Korea joined Switzerland, Sweden, the United States and Great Britain in making the GII top 5 for the first time in 2021, while four other Asian economies are in the top 15: Singapore (8), China (12), Japan (13) and Hong Kong, China (14).

Some middle-income economies, including Turkey, Vietnam, India and the Philippines, are also catching up, and the progress made last year by France (11) and China (12) is being confirmed, as both are now knocking on the door of the GII summit. ten.

Demonstrate resilience

According to a new feature from GII – the Global Innovation Tracker – the technological, pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries have boosted their investments during the pandemic and increased their research and development (R&D) efforts.

Big tech companies like Apple, Microsoft and Huawei increased their investments on average by around 10% last year and venture capital investments increased, a trend that continues this year, Wunsch-Vincent said. .

On the other hand, the transport and travel sectors were strongly affected by the containment measures and reduced their spending. GII 2021 also shows technological advancements at the border to be very promising, with the rapid development of COVID-19 vaccines being the best example.

“Despite the massive impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, many sectors have shown remarkable resilience, especially those that have embraced digitization, technology and innovation,” said the chief executive of the ‘WIPO, Daren Tang. “As the world seeks to rebuild itself after the pandemic, we know that innovation is essential to overcome the common challenges we face and to build a better future.”

Global innovation landscape

The index ranks 132 countries, as well as sub-economies such as Hong Kong, and comes a year after WIPO reported that investment in innovation hit a record high in 2019, posting an average annual profit of 8.5%.

North America and Europe continue to dominate the global innovation landscape, but Southeast Asia, East Asia and Oceania have been the most dynamic in the last decade and are the only regions to close the gap with the leaders.

According to the report, China is still the only middle-income economy to feature in the top 30. Bulgaria (35), Malaysia (36), Turkey (41), Thailand (43), Vietnam (44), Russian Federation ( 45), India (46), Ukraine (49) and Montenegro (50) are in the top 50.

However, only Turkey, Vietnam, India and the Philippines are systematically catching up. Beyond China, these large economies have the potential to change the global innovation landscape for good, he said.

“The GII shows that although emerging economies often struggle to regularly improve their innovation systems, a few middle-income economies have managed to catch up in innovation compared to their more developed peers,” former dean and professor of management at Cornell University, Soumitra says Dutta.

“These emerging economies, among others, have been able to successfully complement their national innovation with international technology transfer, develop technologically dynamic services that can be traded internationally and have ultimately shaped innovation systems. more balanced, ”he said.


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