The United States Drops Out of Top 10 Most Innovative Countries

The United States Drops Out of Top 10 Most Innovative Countries

The latest Bloomberg Innovation Index is out (2021 edition), and South Korea has risen to first place, taking the title back from Germany, while the U.S. fell out of the Top 10 completely.

Seven of the top 10 places went to European countries while the USA and China slipped.

“Intensifying competition between the U.S. and China is reshaping the innovation landscape. For the U.S., fears about losing intellectual property to a geopolitical rival are undermining support for the open innovation system. For China, fear of being cut off from foreign technology is accelerating investment in R&D capacity at home.” — Bloomberg Chief Economist Tom Orlik

The rankings are based on dozens of criteria centered around seven metrics:

  • For patent activity
  • For research personnel concentration
  • For tertiary education
  • For technology company density
  • For productivity
  • For manufacturing value added
  • For research and development expenditures

Bloomberg Innovation Index 2021 Chart Part 1
Bloomberg Innovation Index 2021 Chart Part 2
Bloomberg Innovation Index 2021 Chart Part 3

The Bloomberg Innovation Index tries to measure and rank countries on the ability of their economies to innovate, which will be a key theme at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland taking place Jan. 26-29.

While spending on research and development continues to be important, shifts in productivity and education effectiveness (among other factors) will continue to encourage significant changes in the index from year to year.

“In the year of Covid and facing the urgency of climate change, the importance of innovation fundamentals only increases. Innovation is often measured by new ideas, new products and new services, but its their diffusion and adoption that is the real metric of success.” — Catherine Mann, Global Chief Economist at Citigroup Inc.

What do you think?

Does Bloomberg get it right or are there other innovation rankings or indexes that do a better job?

Which is more important to the relative innovativeness of a country, efforts by the government or by industry?

Which countries do the best job of achieving successful public/private partnerships to encourage innovation?

Click here to see the full 2021 Bloomberg Innovation Index rankings

Build a Common Language of Innovation

Image credits: Bloomberg

This article originally appeared on Innovation, Change and Digital Transformation

Braden Kelley

Braden Kelley is a Design Thinking, Innovation and Transformation Consultant, a popular innovation speaker and workshop leader, and helps companies use Human-Centered Change™ to beat the 70% change failure rate. He is the author of Charting Change from Palgrave Macmillan and Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire from John Wiley & Sons. Braden has been advising companies since 1996, while living and working in England, Germany, and the United States. Braden earned his MBA from top-rated London Business School. Follow him on Twitter and Linkedin.

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