OECD Science, Technology and Industry Outlook

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1999-1428 (online)
2074-7187 (print)
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OECD’s biennial comprehensive review of key trends in science, technology and innovation policy in OECD countries. In addition to examining main trends across the OECD, the report delves into specific topics that are high on the agenda of innovation policy makers, such as the role of intellectual property rights and technology licensing markets in innovation performance, policies to enhance benefits of the globalisation of business R&D, human resources for science and technology, and the evaluation of innovation policy. While retaining its focus on developments in OECD countries, it also highlights key developments in a number of important non-member economies, including China, Russia and South Africa. A statistical annex provides up-to-date statistics on R&D funding, patents, researchers and other indicators of innovative performance.

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OECD Science, Technology and Industry Outlook 2010

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Publication Date :
14 Dec 2010
Pages :
9789264094505 (PDF) ; 9789264084674 (print)

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In the search for a rapid, sustainable and lasting recovery from the economic crisis, science, technology and innovation are expected to play a driving role. But what are the implications for science and innovation policy? What steps are countries taking to boost their capabilities in these areas? What place are emerging economies likely to occupy in the science, technology and innovation landscape?

The OECD Science, Technology and Industry Outlook 2010 reviews key trends in science, technology and innovation in OECD countries and a number of major emerging economies including Brazil, China, India, Russia and South Africa. Using the latest available data and indicators, it examines topics high on the agenda of economic policy makers, including performance in science and innovation, trends in national science, technology and innovation policies and the design and assessment of innovation policy, including policy interactions and the "policy mix". It provides individual profiles of the science and innovation performance of each country and relates these to their national context and current policy challenges.

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  • Click to Access:  Foreword
    The OECD Science, Technology, and Industry Outlook 2010 is the eighth in a biennial series designed to examine trends, prospects and policy directions in science, technology and industry across the OECD area and major non-member economies. In addition to synthesising the latest available information on major policy developments, it contains a chapter on the design and assessment of innovation policy: the "policy mix". It also provides individual profiles of the science and innovation performance of countries and relates these to their national context and current policy challenges.
  • Click to Access:  OECD at 50
    In 2011 the OECD celebrates its 50th anniversary, and to mark the occasion we’ll look briefly at how science and technology have evolved since the 1960s, how the OECD contributed to this evolution and the prospects for the 21st century.
  • Click to Access:  Better policies for better lives
    As the following examples show, the OECD has been a major influence on how governments approach science, technology and innovation, and how economics as a discipline tries to understand these phenomena.
  • Click to Access:  Executive Summary
    In the wake of the financial crisis, science, technology and innovation (STI) will make a vital contribution to a sustainable and lasting recovery and to the longer-term growth prospects of OECD and non-OECD economies. STI can open new avenues to meet some of the major challenges facing societies: demographic change, global health issues and climate change. To deliver on these agendas, it is essential for countries to maintain productive investments in knowledge. STI has never been more important.
  • Click to Access:  Key Trends in Science, Technology and Innovation
    This chapter provides an overview of the main trends in science, technology and innovation across the OECD area and in selected non-member economies. Using the latest available data and analyses, it highlights changes in R&D investment and skilled human resources, and explores their impact on scientific and innovative activity. It also analyses trends in globalisation and looks at the future potential of non-OECD economies in the innovation arena. Against the backdrop of the financial crisis and economic downturn, and to provide a forward-looking component, the chapter also uses available data and evidence to discuss the future growth prospects of OECD and selected non-member economies, future challenges facing societies, and emerging areas in science, technology and innovation.
  • Click to Access:  Main Trends in Science, Technology and Innovation Policy
    This chapter presents the main trends in national science, technology and innovation policies, with a particular focus on policies and programmes introduced between 2008 and 2010. It discusses developments relating to public-sector research, government support for business R&D and innovation, collaboration and networking among innovating organisations, globalisation of R&D and open innovation
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  • Expand / Collapse Hide / Show all Abstracts Science and innovation: country notes

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    • Click to Access:  Australia
      Australia’s innovation landscape is dynamic and displays a number of strengths. Gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) has grown since 2000 to a record 1.97% of GDP in 2006. Business expenditure on R&D (BERD) was 1.2% of GDP in 2007, below the OECD average that year of 1.6%. The share of GERD financed by industry increased from 54.3% to 58.3% from 2004 to 2006, while the share financed by government fell from 40.3% to 37.3%. Industry financed 96% of BERD in 2007, up from 89% in 2001. In 2006, the services sector performed 40% of BERD. Based on a broad definition of venture capital, venture capital intensity (0.13% of GDP) exceeded the average in 2008. Based on a narrower definition (excluding private equity), however, this ratio has fallen in recent years.
    • Click to Access:  Austria
      Austria performs well on a number of science and innovation indicators. Since 1998 gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) has increased consistently as a share of GDP to 2.7% in 2008, mainly owing to higher business expenditure on R&D (BERD) (1.9% of GDP). The 23.8% of GERD performed by the higher education sector was slightly lower than in preceding years; that of government (5.3%) increased slightly.
    • Click to Access:  Belgium
      The shape of Belgium’s science and innovation profile reveals a number of strong features. Investment in human resources in science and technology (HRST) is a policy priority. Belgium has 8 researchers per thousand employment, slightly above the OECD average. Science and engineering degrees represented 23% of new degrees in 2007, marginally above the OECD average, and in 2008 HRST occupations accounted for 32.5% of total employment.
    • Click to Access:  Brazil
      Brazil’s economy is characterised by large and well-developed agricultural, mining, manufacturing and services sectors. Its USD 2 trillion economy is expanding rapidly into world markets, and is also changing structurally. Over the decade to 2008, high-technology manufacturing exports increased at an average annual 16%, faster than total manufacturing exports (13%), a sign of higher competitiveness.
    • Click to Access:  Canada
      Canada has a unique innovation landscape and its science and innovation profile displays notable strengths. It has strong human resources in science and technology (HRST) and HRST occupations are well represented in total employment. It counts 22.4% of science and engineering graduates in total university graduates, slightly above the OECD average. Canada has a high share of tertiary-level graduates in total employment, 58% of whom are women. Researcher numbers increased more slowly in 2007 to 8.3 per thousand total employment, but remained above average.
    • Click to Access:  Chile
      Chile joined the OECD on 7 May 2010. Its economy is characterised by a high level of foreign trade. It has a reputation for strong financial institutions and sound policy, and has the strongest sovereign bond rating in South America. Chile’s science and innovation profile shows particular strengths and improvement over the two years to 2008, but also some weaknesses.
    • Click to Access:  China
      Over the past three decades China’s economy has moved from being largely closed to becoming a major global player. Its innovation system has undergone considerable change and its innovation performance has improved noticeably. Gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) increased consistently from 0.73% in 1991 to 1.5% of GDP in 2008, the equivalent of around 13% of total OECD GERD. Industry funded about 70% of GERD, and the government 24%. Business expenditure on R&D (BERD) was 1% of GDP in 2008, and increased by 27% a year in real terms in the decade since 1997. In 2007, business R&D was equivalent to almost 12% of OECD BERD, up from 2% in 1997.
    • Click to Access:  Czech Republic
      The Czech Republic is rapidly catching up with key OECD countries and performs above east European OECD countries on a number of indicators. High-technology exports, for example, grew substantially faster than medium-high technology exports between 1998 and 2008. Inflows of foreign direct investment were also strong up to 2008.
    • Click to Access:  Denmark
      Denmark is one of the stronger OECD members on a number of science and innovation indicators. It has a modern open market economy featuring a hightechnology agricultural sector and a sophisticated manufacturing industry, with world leaders in pharmaceuticals, maritime shipping and renewable energy. It has a large government R&D budget and high expenditure on biotechnology and pharmaceutical R&D. In 2008, Denmark’s gross domestic expenditure on R&D (GERD) was 2.7% of GDP, firmly above the OECD average of 2.3%. Industry-financed GERD increased to 61%, while government-funded GERD declined to 25%. Business expenditure on R&D (BERD) was a comparatively high 1.9% of GDP in 2008; as a percentage of industry value added, this was almost double the OECD average. In that year, Denmark also had a high venture capital intensity of 0.16%, well above the average.
    • Click to Access:  Estonia
      Estonia has one of the higher per capita income levels in central Europe. Successive governments have carried out significant reforms. The economy benefits from strong electronics and telecommunications sectors and has strong trade ties with Finland, Germany and Sweden. The services sector has grown rapidly to account for 75% of GDP.
    • Click to Access:  Finland
      Finland’s innovation investment and performance are among the strongest in the OECD area. Collaboration with other countries is at a high level, and a large proportion of the labour force has a tertiary qualification. Venture capital intensity is above average and the government’s R&D budget is large.
    • Click to Access:  France
      France demonstrates solid science and innovation performance in a number of areas, such as human resources in science and technology (HRST). It had 8.4 researchers per thousand employment in 2007. This is slightly above average; however, the growth rate has slowed in recent years. It also performs above the average in terms of the share of HRST in total employment and the 27.6% share of science and engineering degrees in all new degrees.
    • Click to Access:  Germany
      Germany’s strong innovation profile has remained stable since the 2008 STI Outlook. Science and technology occupations are well represented in total employment, and medium and high-technology manufacturing exports have been robust for a number of years.
    • Click to Access:  Greece
      Greece’s science and innovation profile shows some improvement over the two years to 2008. Indicators for human resources in science and technology (HRST) are mixed. Science and engineering degrees represent 23.4% of all new degrees, slightly above the OECD average (20.9%). Although Greece had a relatively low 4.4 researchers per thousand employment in 2007, researcher numbers had increased at an average annual 3.7% between 2001 and 2007. HRST occupations represented a relatively weak 23% of total employment, and unemployment among graduates was a relatively high 5.7% in 2008 compared to the OECD average of 3.2%.
    • Click to Access:  Hungary
      Hungary’s science and innovation profile has remained largely unchanged over the past two years, with some improvements, particularly in human resources in science and technology (HRST) indicators. For example, science and engineering degrees have increased to 14.1% of all new degrees, although this is still well below the average. Although the number of researchers per thousand employment remained below average at 4.5 in 2008, researchers grew at a robust compound annual rate of 4.7% between 1998 and 2008. HRST occupations increased to 28% of the total population in 2008, and more than 60% of HRST occupations were filled by women.
    • Click to Access:  Iceland
      Iceland enjoyed high average annual GDP growth of 4.6% between 2000 and 2008, largely because of the performance of its financial sector. In late 2008, however, foreign exposure of Icelandic banks, whose loans and other assets totalled more than ten times the country’s GDP, became unsustainable and Iceland’s three largest banks collapsed. Real GDP and GDP per capita fell by 6.5% in 2009 and unemployment more than doubled to 7.2%.
    • Click to Access:  India
      India’s diverse economy includes traditional village farming, modern agriculture, handicrafts, a wide range of modern industries and a multitude of services. Slightly more than half of the workforce is employed in agriculture, but the services sector is the major source of economic growth, accounting for more than half of India’s GDP. India’s GDP grew on average by 7% a year in the decade to 2007, then eased in 2008 and slowed further to 5.6% in 2009. GDP per capita (in PPP terms) of USD 2 790 in 2008 was equivalent to just 6% of GDP in the United States. However, India is fast developing into a major global economy. Innovation can make a valuable contribution to India’s long-term challenges: building physical and social infrastructure, creating employment opportunities and improving basic and higher education.
    • Click to Access:  Indonesia
      Indonesia seems to have weathered the global financial crisis relatively well. Its GDP was just below USD 1 trillion in 2009. Although GDP growth slowed from more than 6% in 2007 and 2008 to 4.5% in 2009, it outperformed most of its regional neighbours. The official unemployment rate was 8.4% in 2008 and a moderate 7.7% in 2009. GDP per capita, however, is low by OECD standards at 8.6% relative to the United States in 2009.
    • Click to Access:  Ireland
      Ireland is a small, modern, tradedependent economy. Its innovation system has been influenced by the openness of its economy and the extensive involvement of foreign multinationals. The global financial crisis severely affected the Irish economy and a recession was recorded for the first time in more than a decade.
    • Click to Access:  Israel
      Israel has a technologically advanced and open market economy, with highly developed agricultural and industrial sectors. Exports account for about 45% of its GDP. Its science and innovation profile shows strong performance. It had the highest gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) in 2008 at 4.9% of GDP. In 2006, 77% of GERD was funded by industry, and government funded 16%.
    • Click to Access:  Italy
      In 2008, Italy’s gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) increased to 1.2% of GDP from 1.1% in 2006, but remained below the OECD average. Real GERD grew by almost 6% in both 2006 and 2007, but fell by 0.8% in 2008. GERD per capita was USD 369 in current PPP, below the OECD average. In 2007 industry financed 42% of GERD, well below the OECD average of 64%. In 2008, business expenditure on R&D (BERD) stood at 0.6% and venture capital intensity at 0.04% of GDP, both at the lower end of the spectrum.
    • Click to Access:  Japan
      Japan has a technologically advanced economy, with close and interlocking structures of manufacturers, suppliers and distributors. Its science and innovation profile demonstrates top performance in several areas. Japan’s gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) edged higher to 3.4% of GDP in 2008 to be the third highest in the OECD. Real GERD growth was strong from 2005 to 2007 but turned negative in 2008 (–1.2%).
    • Click to Access:  Korea
      Korea has achieved remarkable growth and global integration as a high-technology industrialised economy. It has performed exceptionally well over the last few decades in catching up with leading OECD economies, and innovation has played an important role in narrowing the gaps.
    • Click to Access:  Luxembourg
      Luxembourg is a small and stable high-income economy and has historically featured solid growth, low inflation and low unemployment. The economy has diversified from its roots in steel, and the value added by banks, insurance, real estate and other business services account for almost half of the economy’s total value added: the financial sector alone accounts for 30% of GDP. The country’s science and innovation profile demonstrates strong areas but also areas for improvement. Gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) is relatively modest, and in 2008 its 1.6% of GDP was below the OECD average. GERD per capita is quite high by comparison, and real GERD grew by 2.7% in 2008. In 2007, threequarters of GERD were financed by industry, the second highest share after Japan. At 1.2% of GDP, however, this indicator was slightly below the average in 2007. Business expenditure was 1.3% of GDP in 2008, also below the average.
    • Click to Access:  Mexico
      Mexico’s economy is undergoing structural change. Key challenges include improving the education system, upgrading infrastructure, modernising labour laws and fostering private investment in the energy sector. Innovation can play an important role in all these areas.
    • Click to Access:  Netherlands
      Economic activity in the Netherlands is dominated by food processing, chemicals, petroleum refining, electrical machinery and a highly mechanised agricultural sector. Its science and innovation profile shows strong outcomes and sound linkages despite weak input indicators.
    • Click to Access:  New Zealand
      Over the past two decades the New Zealand economy has undergone substantial reform and has diversified significantly. This has broadened the technological capabilities of the manufacturing sector, although high-technology exports are still a relatively low share of total exports. The agricultural sector’s contribution to GDP is higher than in most OECD countries.
    • Click to Access:  Norway
      Norway is richly endowed with natural resources, such as petroleum, hydropower, fish, forests and minerals. The economy has continued to grow in recent years, but its ability to sustain long-term growth and prepare itself for a decline in oil reserves depends on continued productivity gains supported by innovation. The country’s science and innovation profile presents a mixed picture.
    • Click to Access:  Poland
      Poland has pursued a policy of economic liberalisation since 1990 and is a success story among transition economies. A growing services sector accounts for nearly two-thirds of GDP. The government has undertaken structural reforms in a number of areas to create a more efficient business environment and legal system, a more liberalised labour market, less red tape and a simpler tax system. A stronger focus on innovation can help to improve productivity and increase competitiveness.
    • Click to Access:  Portugal
      Portugal’s science and innovation profile reveals both strengths and weaknesses. It has improved significantly over the past two years and four indicators now exceed the average, compared with two in the previous STI Outlook. Although still below the OECD average, gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) has almost doubled, from 0.8% of GDP in 2000 to 1.5% in 2008. Since 2005, GERD has grown in real terms by a strong average annual 25%. The funding of GERD has changed significantly: industry’s share increased from 27% in 2000 to 47% in 2007, while the government’s share fell from 65% to 45%. Business expenditure on R&D (BERD) increased from 0.2% of GDP in 2000 to 0.8% in 2008; in 2008 venture capital intensity (0.03% of GDP) was well below the average.
    • Click to Access:  Russian Federation
      Since 1990 the Russian Federation has moved rapidly to being a globally integrated economy. Russian industry includes a number of internationally competitive commodity producers and in 2009 it was a major exporter of natural gas, oil, steel and primary aluminium. This reliance on commodity exports makes Russia vulnerable to boom and bust cycles and also affects the focus of R&D and innovation policy. The Russian science and innovation profile demonstrates areas of strong performance, but also areas for future development.
    • Click to Access:  Slovak Republic
      The Slovak Republic has undertaken significant economic reforms since 1993. Major privatisations are nearly complete, the banking sector is almost entirely in foreign hands, and the government has helped facilitate a foreign investment boom with attractive tax policies. Foreign investment has been strong in the automotive and electronic sectors.
    • Click to Access:  Slovenia
      Slovenia adopted the euro in January 2007 and joined the OECD in July 2010. It has good infrastructure and a well-educated workforce. Slovenia’s science and innovation profile shows notable strengths.
    • Click to Access:  South Africa
      South Africa’s science and innovation profile shows some distinct strengths. The country’s trade in high-technology industries increased by 4 percentage points between 1997 and 2007, indicating a shift away from primary production. During 2002-04, a very high 61% of firms engaged in non-technological innovation, and an above-average 21% introduced newto- market product innovations. In 2008 the country had a relatively low 110 scientific articles per million population, but scientific publications have grown by an average annual 4.5% since 1998, placing it among the 20 fastest-growing countries in this respect.
    • Click to Access:  Spain
      Spain’s science and innovation profile demonstrates a number of strengths, and shows improvements over the two years to 2008 despite difficult economic circumstances. Gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) increased consistently from 0.9% of GDP in 2000 to 1.4% in 2008, with strong average annual real growth of 8.4%. In 2007 the business sector financed 46% of total GERD, slightly more than a decade earlier, and government funding increased from 39% in 2000 to 44%. Spain’s business expenditure on R&D (BERD) was 0.74% of GDP, also below the OECD average. However, venture capital intensity has risen substantially, and in 2008 was above the average at 0.13% of GDP.
    • Click to Access:  Sweden
      Sweden’s science and innovation profile is one of the strongest in the OECD area. Gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) was 3.75% of GDP in 2008, the highest in the OECD area, although down from 4.2% in 2001. Industry funded 64% of GERD in 2007 (down from 72% in 2001), while government financed 22%. GERD per capita is USD 1 380 in current PPP, the highest in the OECD area. Venture capital intensity is well above average.
    • Click to Access:  Switzerland
      Switzerland’s economy enjoys stable economic growth and low unemployment. It has a highly skilled labour force and its per capita GDP is among the highest in the world. Its gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) was 3% of GDP in 2008. Industry financed 68% of GERD, while the government funded 23%. The main beneficiaries were small and medium-sized firms, which received more than 40% of government R&D funding. The business enterprise sector performed 74% of GERD and the higher education sector 24%. In 2008, Switzerland’s business expenditure on R&D (BERD) was 2.2% of GDP, the fifth highest in the OECD, and venture capital intensity increased to 0.13% of GDP.
    • Click to Access:  Turkey
      Turkey has a dynamic economy, characterised by a complex mix of modern industry and commerce and a traditional agriculture sector. The largest industrial sector is textiles and clothing and accounts for one-third of industrial employment. The automotive and electronics industries are growing in importance and have surpassed textiles in Turkey’s export composition. While Turkey’s science and innovation indicators lag those of most OECD countries, there has been some strong performance in recent years.
    • Click to Access:  United Kingdom
      The United Kingdom has the world’s sixth largest economy and performs strongly on a range of science and innovation indicators. In 2008 it contributed almost 12% of OECD-area venture capital funds, and venture capital intensity was double the average at 0.2% of GDP. Also in 2008, the United Kingdom published 76 683 scientific articles, the third highest in the OECD area after the United States and Japan; at 1 250 per million population, this is well above the OECD average.
    • Click to Access:  United States
      The United States has the world’s largest economy, with GDP exceeding USD 14 trillion and GDP per capita of USD 46 400 in 2009. US firms are at or near the forefront of technological advances in a number of areas and the country has quite a strong science and innovation profile.
    • Click to Access:  Annex 3.A1
      The first graph for each country, the radar graph, illustrates its position against the average performance on a set of common indicators. Where possible, the OECD average is used. Data for non-OECD countries are not included in the average. The selected indicators are based on policy relevance, as well as on the availability of comparable data for the majority of countries in order to provide a broad snapshot of science and innovation performance. They focus on research and innovation inputs, scientific and innovation outcomes, linkages and networks, including international linkages and human resources.
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  • Click to Access:  The Innovation Policy Mix
    In recent years, the concept of an innovation policy mix has become an increasingly popular way of thinking about the balance and coherence of the strategic tasks for policy and of the range of policy instruments deployed. This chapter further elaborates the concept and explores its utility for innovation policy assessment and design. The analytical framework outlined will be an important component of the new innovation policy handbook currently being prepared as a follow-up to the OECD Innovation Strategy.
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