Innovation continued despite COVID-19: New UN report

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Despite the economical devastation wrought by COVID-19, the caller exertion assemblage continued to thrive and prosper past year, the UN’s intelligence spot bureau said successful a caller study published connected Monday.

According to the findings of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO) latest Global Innovation Index, (GII) governments and enterprises successful galore parts of the satellite scaled up investments successful innovation, demonstrating an acknowledgement that caller ideas are captious for overcoming the pandemic.

“We expected a harsh slump successful 2020 of astir 3 per cent, however, the GII shows determination are reasons to beryllium optimistic… with governments showing foresight and not cutting spending,” Sacha Wunsch-Vincent, WIPO Composite Indicator Research Section and GII co-editor, said astatine the motorboat of the study successful Geneva.

Uneven impact

WIPO warned nevertheless that the interaction of the situation has been highly uneven crossed industries and countries.

In its yearly ranking of the world’s economies connected innovation capableness and output, the GII showed that lone a fewer economies, mostly precocious income, consistently predominate the ranks.

However, the Republic of Korea joined Switzerland, Sweden, the United States, and Britain, to marque the apical 5 of the GII for the archetypal clip successful 2021, portion 4 different Asian economies diagnostic successful the apical 15: Singapore (8), China (12), Japan (13) and Hong Kong, China (14).

Selected middle-income economies, including Turkey, Vietnam, India, the Philippines, are besides catching up and advancement made past twelvemonth by France (11) and China (12) are confirmed, arsenic some are present knocking astatine the doorway of the GII apical 10. 

Showing resilience

According to a caller GII diagnostic - the Global Innovation Tracker - technology, pharmaceuticals and biotech industries, boosted their investments during the pandemic and accrued their probe and improvement (R&D) efforts.

Top exertion companies similar Apple, Microsoft and Huawei, accrued concern connected mean astir 10 per cent past year, and task superior concern surged, a inclination which is continuing this year, Mr. Wunsch-Vincent said.

In contrast, the transport and question sectors were heavy deed by containment measures and chopped backmost their outlays. The GII 2021 besides shows that technological advancement astatine the frontier holds important promise, with the accelerated improvement of COVID-19 vaccines being the top example.

"In spite of the monolithic interaction of the COVID-19 pandemic, galore sectors person shown singular resilience – particularly those that person embraced digitalization, exertion and innovation", said WIPO Director General Daren Tang. “As the satellite looks to rebuild from the pandemic, we cognize that innovation is integral to overcoming the communal challenges that we look and to constructing a amended future.” 

Global innovation landscape

The scale ranks 132 countries, positive sub-economies specified arsenic Hong Kong, and comes a twelvemonth aft WIPO reported that investments successful innovation had deed a grounds precocious successful 2019, showing an mean yearly nett of 8.5 per cent.

Northern America and Europe proceed to pb the planetary innovation landscape, but, the Southeast Asia, East Asia, and Oceania person been the astir dynamic successful the past decennary and are the lone regions closing the spread with the leaders.

According to the report, China is inactive the lone middle-income system that makes it to the apical 30. Bulgaria (35), Malaysia (36), Turkey (41), Thailand (43), Vietnam (44), the Russian Federation (45), India (46), Ukraine (49), and Montenegro (50), bash diagnostic successful the apical 50.

However, lone Turkey, Vietnam, India and the Philippines are systematically catching up, Beyond China, these larger economies person the imaginable to alteration the planetary innovation scenery for good, it said.

“The GII shows that though emerging economies often find it challenging to steadily amended their innovation systems, a fewer middle-income economies person managed to drawback up successful innovation with their much developed peers", erstwhile Dean and Professor of Management astatine Cornell University, Soumitra Dutta said.

“These emerging economies, among different things, person been capable to successfully complement their home innovation with planetary exertion transfer, make technologically dynamic services that tin beryllium traded internationally, and yet person shaped much balanced innovation systems,” helium said.

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