South Korea leads in innovation, India ranks 50th
According to the latest Bloomberg Innovation Index, South Korea is the most innovative nation, marking the country's return to the top after losing out to Germany last year. The European nation has slipped to the fourth place. While Singapore was judged as the second most-innovative nation, Switzerland took the third place. The United States didn't figure in the top ten countries, India, meanwhile has been ranked 50th.
US had topped the list in 2013
To note, the US had topped the first such list in 2013 but this year, it has been ranked at 11th position. China slipped by one rank, settling at the 16th position. Sweden, Denmark, Israel, Finland, the Netherlands, and Austria took the fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth, and tenth rank respectively. Further, Uruguay, at 56th position, qualified for the first time ever.
Seven equally-weighted parameters were used to judge nations
The index judges countries on the basis of seven equally-weighted parameters — research and development intensity, manufacturing capability, productivity, high-tech density, tertiary efficiency, research personnel concentration, and patent activity. Of the 200 counties selected, eventually, only 111 were taken into account. The remaining ones were eliminated for not reporting data for at least six parameters. By scoring 90.49, South Korea topped the list.
South Korea is serious about R&D
A strong performance in R&D catapulted South Korea to the top. Commenting on the results, Lee Kyung-mook, a professor of business management at Seoul National University, said there is a "near-agreement in the country" that R&D is essential for the future. On the parameter of patent activity too, South Korea scored well. Singapore's performance in manufacturing was commended, and Switzerland's in the research indices.
US scored badly in higher education
Though US universities are famous globally, the country performed poorly in higher education. The coronavirus pandemic and visa restrictions levied by former President Donald Trump were blamed for this. Reflecting on fewer innovations in the US, Sung Won Sohn, an economist at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, said most ideas germinate from relatively smaller companies and take time to reach the consumers.