Switzerland again innovation leader in Europe

02.06.2015 16:44

The European Commission's Innovation Union Scoreboard 2015 has been published. Best performing country is again Switzerland.

The annual Innovation Union Scoreboard provides a comparative assessment of the research and innovation performance of the EU Member States. In addition to EU Member States, the Scoreboard covers Serbia, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland. 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.

The 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. While there have been improvements in human resources, business investments in research and development and the quality of science, these are not enough to result in a stronger innovation performance.

Switzerland best performer in six indicators
In the overall ranking, Sweden is once more the innovation leader, taking into account European countries outside the EU, also this year Switzerland confirms its position as the overall Innovation leader by continuously outperforming all EU Member States. Switzerland’s strong performance is linked to being the best performer in 6 indicators, in particular in Open, excellent and attractive research systems where it has the best performance in all three indicators, and Linkages and entrepreneurship where it has best performance in two indicators (SMEs innovating in-house and Public-private co-publications). Switzerland’s relative weakness is in having below EU average shares in SMEs collaborating with others (9.4% compared to 10.3% for the EU), Community designs (0.93 compared to 1.13 for the EU) and Exports of knowledge-intensive services (25.0% compared to 49.5% for the EU).

Performance has improved most for Non-R&D innovation expenditures (8.2%), International scientific co-publications (8.0%), License and patent revenues from abroad (7.4%) and SMEs innovating in-house (7.0%). The strongest declines in performance are observed in Venture capital investments and Community designs.

The Scoreboard can be downloaded from the website of the European Commission. Below you can download the table with the indicators for Switzerland.

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