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New innovation indicator

Sep 13, 2013 | News

(13 September 2013) – Sweden, Germany, Ireland and Luxembourg are the EU Member States getting the most out of innovation, according to a new indicator proposed by the European Commission.

The “Indicator of Innovation Output” measures the extent to which ideas from innovative sectors are able to reach the market, providing better jobs and making Europe more competitive. The indicator was developed at the request of EU leaders to benchmark national innovation policies, and shows that significant differences remain between EU countries.

The top performers in the EU owe their ranking to doing well on several or all of the following factors: an economy with a high share of knowledge-intensive sectors, fast-growing innovative firms, high levels of patenting and competitive exports.

The novelty of the proposed indicator is that it focuses on innovation output. Innovation output is wide-ranging and differs from sector to sector. The proposed indicator is based on four components chosen for their policy relevance:

  • Technological innovation as measured by patents.
  • Employment in knowledge-intensive activities as a percentage of total employment.
  • Competitiveness of knowledge-intensive goods and services. This is based on both the contribution of the trade balance of high-tech and medium-tech products to the total trade balance, and knowledge-intensive services as a share of the total services exports.
  • Employment in fast-growing firms of innovative sectors.

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