Bloomberg is a major global provider of financial news and information, including financial data, trading news and analyst coverage, as well as general news and sports. Its services, which include its own platform, television, radio and magazines, offer professional analysis tools for financial professionals. The company annually releases rankings of the most innovative countries. The current rankings are published on the company’s official site.
The Bloomberg Innovation Index is divided into seven assessment categories, comprising R&D intensity measuring R&D expenditure, Manufacturing value-added, Productivity per employed person, High-tech density, Tertiary efficiency showing the total enrolment in tertiary education, Researcher concentration, and Patent activity measuring patent filings and patent grants. This year’s assessment covered a total of 50 countries.
In terms of the first and second-place titles, South Korea and Sweden, respectively, have held on to their spots for the fifth consecutive year. Particularly concerning South Korea this is mainly due to the fact that Samsung Electronics Co., the country’s most potent company by market capitalization, has filed more U.S. patents in the 2000s than any other firm except IBM.
The US has dropped out of the top 10 in the Innovation Index for the first time in six years. Despite its weaker overall performance, the US is still ranked as number 1 when it comes to its density of tech companies. The country is also second only to South Korea for patent activity. Bloomberg attributed its fall to 11th place from ninth last year, largely to its poor performance in the rating of its tertiary education, which measures the participation of new science and engineering graduates in the labour force.
Israel occupies 10th position in the Bloomberg rankings. However, the index also positions Israel as number 1 for two categories of innovation: R&D intensity and Researcher concentration. Israel spends more money on research and development in proportion to its economy than any other country (4.3% of GDP).
China has advanced two places to 19th position in the rankings from 21st the previous year, which is largely due to its high proportion of new science and engineering graduates in the labour force and the increasing number of patents by innovators such as Huawei Technologies Co. Huawei’s patent portfolio has increased significantly in recent years, as the company filed nearly 8,000 patent applications between 2015 and 2016. As a result, Huawei reports that it holds more than 15 percent of patents related to 4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) wireless communications.
Japan, one of three Asian nations in the top 10, rose one place to number 6. France moved up to 9th position from 11th, joining five other European economies in the top tier. Movements in this year’s list were generally less dramatic than last year, when Russia lost 14 places because of sanctions related to Ukraine and the plunge in energy prices. In the current index Russia has been able to advance one place to 25th.
The biggest losers in these rankings were New Zealand (19th) and Ukraine (46th), both dropping four places. New Zealand received low scores in productivity, while Ukraine was hurt by a lower tertiary-efficiency ranking.