Innovation has remained immune to the COVID-19 pandemic and both governments and companies have not only maintained but increased their investments in this area, according to a global index published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
The huge losses caused by the health crisis have not discouraged investors from the public and private sectors, which the organization’s specialists interpret as a general acceptance that new ideas will be vital to overcoming the epidemic and spurring economic growth.
This year’s edition of the Global Innovation Index shows us that despite the serious impacts it may face pandemic WIPO Director Darren Tang commented on their lives and livelihoods, many sectors have shown remarkable resilience, particularly those that have opted for digitalization, technology and innovation.
The strength of the innovation field is demonstrated by the increase in scientific output, research and development (R&D) spending, patent applications, and venture capital operations in 2020.
According to the analysis released Monday, research and development spending has been particularly resilient in the first year of this crisis compared to previous recessions.
The report also updates the annual ranking of the world’s economies, according to their capacity and production for innovation, but in fact, the countries that have held the lead in terms of the results of recent years remain: Switzerland tops the list, followed by Sweden and United State and the United Kingdom. Spain ranks 30th in the index.
A big leap has been made North Korea, which went from 10th to 5th and pushed the Netherlands (6) down a bit, Finland (7), Singapore (8), Denmark (9) and Germany (10).
China has risen two places, to twelfth place, but the most interesting thing about this is that it is the only developing country that has been on a steadily rising slope for more than ten years and experts have no doubt that it will soon join the selection group. The club of the ten most innovative countries in the world.
Turkey, Vietnam, India and the Philippines are gaining ground and beginning to influence the innovation landscape. More broadly, the report notes that Southeast and East Asian countries are slowly bridging the huge gap that separates them from the United States and Europe.
In other regions, including Latin America, the report’s expert and co-editor, Sacha Wunsch Vincent, said “progress is very slow”, but highlighted the cases of Chile, MexicoCosta Rica, and more recently Brazil, ranked first 60 on the list.
And some countries in sub-Saharan Africa are beginning to show their attractiveness to investing in innovation, “because there is a lot of money around the world looking for new ideas and opportunities,” Winch-Vincent explained.
On the other hand, the report highlights the effects of health crisis They were very varying between different economic activities.
While programming, internet, communications, hardware, electronic equipment, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology have increased their investment in innovation, companies affected by the pandemic — notably automobiles, transportation and travel — have cut their spending in this area.
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