OECD Science, Technology and Innovation Outlook 2018

Adapting to Technological and Societal Disruption

image of OECD Science, Technology and Innovation Outlook 2018

The OECD Science, Technology and Innovation Outlook 2018 is the twelfth edition in a series that biennially reviews key trends in science, technology and innovation (STI) policy in OECD countries and a number of major partner economies. The 14 chapters within this edition look at a range of topics, notably the opportunities and challenges related to enhanced data access, the impacts of artificial intelligence on science and manufacturing, and the influence of digitalisation on research and innovation. The report also discusses the shortcomings of current policy measures, how the Sustainable Development Goals are re-shaping STI policy agendas, and the need for new - more flexible and agile - approaches to technology governance and policy design. While these disruptive changes challenge policy makers in a number of ways, the digital revolution underway also provides solutions for better policy targeting, implementation and monitoring.

This report relies on the latest academic work in the field, research and innovation statistical data, as well as data on wider trends and issues. It makes extensive use of country responses to the 2017 EC OECD STI policy survey (https://stip.oecd.org) and features contributions by renowned experts and academics to broaden the debate and provide more personal, sometimes controversial, angles to it.

English Also available in: French

The digitalisation of science and innovation policy

Digitalisation will profoundly affect the public sector and the evidence base on which it formulates, implements, monitors and evaluates public policy. The science, technology and innovation (STI) policy field is no exception. In recent years, many countries have begun to develop digital science and innovation policy (DSIP) initiatives, to help build a picture of the incidence and impact of their science and innovation activities. This chapter provides an introductory overview of DSIP systems in OECD member and partner countries. Drawing on the findings of a recent OECD survey of DSIP initiatives, it first outlines the main characteristics of the DSIP systems currently in use and under development. It then describes the promises and challenges of DSIP systems. It shows that much can be gained from this digital transformation by leveraging the untapped potential of data about STI. However, obstacles and risks also exist. These relate to privacy and confidentiality, interoperability standards, and potential misalignment of incentives between policy objectives and STI actors, including the private sector. If DSIP initiatives are to fulfil their future potential, STI policy needs to address these opportunities and challenges, sometimes at the international level. The chapter concludes by considering the outlook for DSIP systems and possible avenues for policy action.



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