The human race keeps moving forward with myriad innovations and developments that improve the standard of living around the world. The most innovative countries push the envelope for developments that benefits humans around the planet. Bloomberg measures
the innovation of the countries around the world in terms of their research and development, patents, high-tech density and other ways to abet innovation. The most innovative countries in the world are contributing in the fields of healthcare, smarter living, organic meat and technology etc.
The Bloomberg study evaluates seven weighted metrics for assessing innovation. It takes into account research and development activity, manufacturing, productivity, researchers & patent activity to rank the innovative countries around the world.
Most Innovative Countries
South Korea has grabbed the top spot on the list of most innovative countries in 2021. South Korea was at the second spot in 2020. The country has been prominently held as an innovator bagging the top spot for six consecutive years from 2014 to 2019. The South Korean economy has been a story of remarkable turnaround based on its innovation. It has transformed itself from one of the poorest countries in the 1960s to the world’s 10th largest economy in 2020.
South Korea has access to almost no natural resources & has a high density of population on its land. But the resurgence of South Korea owes to its education system that has been driving the technology boom and preparing ground for its economic development. A high number of research activities, adoption of the latest technology and skilled workforce make South Korea a force to reckon in the world today. The country is also among the leading R&D investors of the world in proportion of its GDP. The Asian country has been among the leading exporters of technology around the world. South Korea received a score of 90.49 on the Bloomberg innovation index.
Singapore is the second most innovative economy in the world behind South Korea. It improved its ranking from 2020 where it was ranked third on the index. Singapore has been investing in building a digital and future driven economy to address the national and societal priorities. The country ranks highly on most development indicators for measuring standards of living of its residents, not just innovation. Singapore received a score of 87.76 in 2021.
European Dominance Among Innovative Economies
Switzerland grabbed the third spot among the most innovative economies of the world this year. It was ranked fourth in 2020. The country is the most innovative economy in Europe. It has a highly developed infrastructure, education, research, facilities and training system for its citizens. Switzerland also invests a significant portion of its GDP on R&D activities to foster innovation. It received a score of 87.60 on the innovation index.
Germany moved from the first spot in 2020 to the fourth spot in 2021. The country saw a decline of three positions as its innovation score fell by 3 points at 86.45 in 2021. Germany has been at the forefront of R&D, innovation and has a highly productive workforce. It has shown the ability to innovate, adopt modern technology & has high quality of education. The European country has shown its research as a top innovator in the automobile industry. It has led the technology for driverless vehicles, digital networked mobility and electric cars.
Sweden & Denmark round off the fifth and sixth positions among the most innovative countries. Sweden’s position remained unchanged from 2020, whereas Denmark gained a rank two positions higher this year. Sweden and Denmark scored 86.39 and 86.12 respectively on the innovation index. Sweden has been consistently ranked among the most innovative countries in Europe and the world. The country has invested in zero emission electric cars and investing in innovative technologies to deliver citizen services.
Small But Highly Innovative Country
Israel is the seventh most innovative country in the 2021 Bloomberg innovation index. Last year it was ranked sixth. Israel is among the highest spending countries for R&D for its GDP. Israel spends nearly 4.9% of its GDP on R&D every year, which is the highest in the world. The country has been a bedrock of innovative technologies and breakthrough concepts for the world. Israel is home to more high tech startups per capita on the globe. The flexible stents used for opening up artery blockages, free voice calling app, & firewall for protection against malware are some just some of the innovations from Israel. The country is also known for a high number of patents for a small country. Israel received a score of 85.5 on the innovative index.
Finland & Netherlands are the eight and ninth most innovative economies of the world. They scored 84.86 and 84.29 respectively on the innovation index. Finland was ranked seventh in 2021, while Netherlands made an entry into the top 10 this year, last year it was ranked thirteenth. The Finnish Ecosystem is developed to create innovative models by linking startups with large companies, universities and government offices. Finland is among the top breeding spots for startups in Europe and driven by a strong support system from the governments there. Finland’s innovation model is driven by adopting information technology for economic growth and improving quality of life for its people.
Austria rounds up the tenth position for the most innovative economy in 2021. Austria moved up from the eleventh spot in 2020. The country received a score of 83.93 on the innovation index in 2021. The most innovative economies in the world are driven by the EU members. As many as seven out of the top ten countries are from Europe. The European countries are increasingly adopting digital technologies for innovation, aiding productivity, & improving the quality of life for its citizens. The region is also known for its collaborative framework for advancing innovations and technology.
The rate of innovations matter and have a significant impact on humanity. As 2020 saw the worst of the Corona pandemic, the innovations for healthcare and the technologies that have made it possible have been lauded around the world. The speed at which countries can adopt new ideas, experiment and innovate to build solutions for the world gives them an edge. Many of these innovations are now driven by the fourth industrial revolution with digital technologies taking the center stage.