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Which nations are the innovation champions?

Its international scorecard identifies critical areas of national policy that spur innovation and reveals what may be stunting it

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CTA conducted a comparative analysis of 38 countries and the European Union
CTA conducted a comparative analysis of 38 countries and the European Union

The Consumer Technology Association’s (CTA) inaugural International Innovation Scorecard identifies and ranks 13 countries that lead with factors conducive to innovation.

 

The organisation behind this week’s CES 2018 electronics event identified Finland, the United Kingdom, Australia, Sweden, United States, Singapore, Netherlands, Canada, Portugal, Czech Republic, Austria, Denmark and New Zealand as the 2018 Innovation Champions.

 

Announced during CES 2018 in Las Vegas, the Scorecard identifies critical areas of national policy that spur innovation and reveals the areas in which countries may be stunting their own futures and economic growth.

 

“Our goal with the International Innovation Scorecard is to evaluate countries from a uniquely American perspective, to determine which countries have the best policies in place to allow innovators to create and introduce new and transformative technologies,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, CTA.

 

He added: “Innovation is both the heart and the product of the American Dream. Today, more countries than ever see a similar dream within reach and are positioned to realise the benefits of innovation -- through both their own nation’s successes and the collective progress of the world. We congratulate all of this year’s Innovation Champions.”

 

CTA, the largest US tech trade association, conducted a comparative analysis of 38 countries and the European Union. The Scorecard uses several objective criteria including: whether governments welcome disruptive business models and technologies including the sharing economy and self-driving vehicles; how friendly their tax systems are; how well they protect the environment; and issues of perennial importance such as broadband speed and cost.

 

The Scorecard also gauges countries on diversity; the ratio of female-to-male employees in the workplace in key age demographics; immigrants as a share of the national population; and freedom of thought and expression.

 

“The trend lines are clear. Innovation is encouraged where governments are hospitable to new ideas, where people enjoy great freedom and clean environments and where innovators are embraced,” added Shapiro.

 

“Countries’ futures are tied to innovation, because it will bolster economic growth and provide future generations with the jobs they want. Graduates entering the work force today don’t necessarily want to stay in the factory jobs of previous generations, they want to use their creativity and curiosity to build brighter futures worldwide.”

 

Other key findings, ranked by grade, include:

  • The most diverse countries are Australia, Canada, Singapore and Sweden
  • The countries with the greatest individual and political freedom in the world are Canada, the Netherlands, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Portugal
  • The countries that have, on average, the fastest and most affordable internet connections are the United Kingdom, Finland, South Korea, Sweden, Germany, Denmark, Austria and the Netherlands
  • The countries with the most educated workforces are Singapore, Israel, Japan, Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden and New Zealand
  • The countries with the most innovation-friendly tax systems are Singapore, China, Panama, Chile, Ireland and Canada
  • The countries with the greatest R&D spending as a percentage of GDP are Israel, South Korea, Japan, Sweden, Austria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, and the United States
  • The countries with the highest level of entrepreneurial activity are Australia, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, the United States, Singapore, Ireland and Sweden
  • The countries most fully enabling people and companies to test and deploy drone technologies are Australia, Finland, Portugal, Singapore and Sweden
  • The countries that allow ride-sharing to operate most freely are Finland, Panama, Peru, Poland, Rwanda, South Africa and Mexico
  • The countries with the best federal frameworks for short-term home rentals are Chile, Denmark, Finland, Israel, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, Portugal and South Africa
  • The countries that allow people and companies to test and deploy self-driving vehicles most widely are Australia, Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States
  • The countries with cleanest water and air are Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States

In this first edition of the International Innovation Scorecard, CTA considered a range of indicators to determine the final roster of countries. The Scorecard evaluates countries that fit two guidelines: the government must be able to influence public policy; and publicly available, verifiable and independent third-party data must exist and can be compared with different nations. In future editions, CTA will expand the scope of the Scorecard and include more countries.

In April, CTA will release the fifth edition of the U.S. Innovation Scorecard which grades all 50 states.

 

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