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15/7/2020  
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R&D
Innovation Union Scoreboard 2015

Sweden, Denmark, Germany and Finland, the four countries that invest most in innovation


The European Commission´s Innovation Union Scoreboard 2015 reveals that the EU´s overall level of innovation has remained stable. However, the crisis has left an impact on the private sector´s innovative activity: the number of innovative firms is in decline, as are SMEs´ innovations, patent applications, exports of high-tech products, venture capital investments and sales of innovative products
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The annual Innovation Union Scoreboard provides a comparative assessment of the research and innovation performance of the EU Member States. The Scoreboard is a useful, non-binding tool that helps Member States assess the strengths and weaknesses of their research and innovation systems and see where to concentrate efforts to boost their innovation performance.

In addition to EU Member States, the Scoreboard covers Serbia, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland. On a more limited number of indicators, available internationally, it also covers Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, India, Japan, Russia, South Africa, South Korea and the US. The IUS2015 is accompanied by an additional analysis that ranks the Member States on individual indicators.

Europe is closing its innovation gap with the United States and Japan but differences in performance between EU Member States are still high and diminishing only slowly.

At a regional level, the innovation gap is widening, with the innovation performance having worsened in almost one fifth of EU regions. These are the main results of the European Commission´s Innovation Union Scoreboard 2014 and the Regional Innovation Scoreboard 2014.

The overall ranking within the EU remains relatively stable, with Sweden at the top, followed by Denmark, Germany and Finland – the four countries that invest most in research and innovation. The countries whose position has improved the most are Portugal, Estonia and Latvia. Overall progress has been driven by the openness and attractiveness of the EU research system as well as business innovation collaboration and the commercialisation of knowledge as measured by licence and patent revenues from abroad. However, growth in public R&D expenditure was offset by a decline in venture capital investment and non-R&D innovation investment in companies.

In the overall ranking, Sweden is once more the innovation leader, followed by Denmark, Finland and Germany. The fastest growing innovators are Malta, Latvia and Bulgaria, Ireland, the UK and Poland. In global comparison, the EU continues to be outperformed by the US, Japan and South Korea.

The Innovation Union Scoreboard covers the innovation system as a whole, covering both public and private sectors´ innovation capacities. The scoreboard captures a total of 25 different indicators, which encompass the external conditions for innovation, the level of firms own innovation activity and how this translates into benefits for the whole economy.

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