Skip links
A global index for innovation.

East Asia is world’s centre for science and tech innovation index shows

The world’s five biggest science and technology (S&T) clusters are now located in East Asia, with China emerging as the country with the greatest number of clusters. Switzerland, Sweden, Singapore, the US and the UK are the world’s most innovative economies in 2023, according to WIPO’s Global Innovation Index (GII).

China – the only middle-income economy in the GII top 30 – ranks 12th followed by Japan in the 13th position. Israel (14th) is back among the GII top 15, gaining two steps. A group of middle-income economies have emerged over the past decade as the fastest climbers of the ranking, WIPO says.

The index uses 80 indicators to track global innovation trends in 130-plus economies with WIPO stressing that the report’s findings are unveiled against a background of slow economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, high interest rates and geopolitical conflict

Finland (6th) is on an upward trend along with Denmark (9th), Sweden (2nd) and the Baltic economies (Estonia 16th, Lithuania 34th and Latvia 37th). 

“In the past 10 years, Indonesia (61st) joins China, Türkiye (39th), India (40th), Vietnam (46th), the Philippines (56th), and the Islamic Republic of Iran (62nd) in the group of middle-income economies to have climbed the GII rankings fastest.” 

Read Also:  Tech and innovation critical for gender equality

“In the last four years, and since the pandemic started, Mauritius (57th), Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Brazil and Pakistan have risen the most in rank (in order of rank progression).” 

“A total of 21 economies outperformed on innovation as expected relative to their level of development, the majority located in Sub-Saharan Africa and South East Asia, East Asia, and Oceania.” 

“India, the Republic of Moldova and Vietnam are each innovation overperformers for 13 years in a row. Indonesia, Pakistan and Uzbekistan maintain their overperformer status for a second year and Brazil for a third consecutive year.”

Read Also:  Women will be empowered at workplace using AI

Key findings: 

  • Scientific publications, research and development (R&D), the number of venture capital (VC) deals (but not their value) and patents continued to increase to higher than ever levels. However, growth rates were lower than the exceptional increases seen in 2021. 
  • In 2022, spending by corporations representing the largest investors in R&D reached USD 1.1 trillion in 2022 – a historic high. They increased their R&D spend by around 7.4% in 2022, down from 15% growth in 2021. 
  • Mirroring the recent surge of artificial intelligence, the ICT hardware sectors saw graphic card and chipmakers in the lead with the most notable R&D growth in 2022. Other sectors which cut back R&D spending during the pandemic, such as automobiles and travel and leisure, invested strongly again in 2022. 
  • According to preliminary data, global government R&D budgets are estimated to have increased in real terms in 2022. Significant increases took place in Japan and the Republic of Korea, and smaller ones in Germany, making up for cuts in other economies. 
  • Reflecting a deteriorating climate for risk finance, the total value of VC investments declined sharply by close to 40% in 2022, albeit from unusually high levels in 2021. Africa was the only region not to see a decline in 2022. 
  • The VC outlook for 2023 and 2024 is uncertain, with high interest rates likely to continue to impact the financing of innovation. 
  • Indicators in the fields of information technology, health and energy continue to show progress – the Digital Age and Deep Science innovation waves outlined in GII 2022 are well underway.

Overall, technology adoption is developing positively even though penetration for some technologies, such as electric vehicles and cancer treatment, remains low.

The top 20

1 Switzerland (Number 1 in 2022) 

2 Sweden (3)

3 United States of America (2) 

4 United Kingdom (4)

5 Singapore (7) 

6 Finland (9)

7 Netherlands (5)

8 Germany (8)

9 Denmark (10) 

10 Republic of Korea (6)

11 France (12) 

12 China (11)

13 Japan (13) 

14 Israel (16)

15 Canada (15)

16 Estonia (18)

17 Hong Kong, China (14)

18 Austria (17)

19 Norway (22)

20 Iceland (20)

Read Also:  AI industry needs more women UN report stressing


Moonshot News is an independent European news website for all IT, Media and Advertising professionals, powered by women and with a focus on driving the narrative for diversity, inclusion and gender equality in the industry.

Our mission is to provide top and unbiased information for all professionals and to make sure that women get their fair share of voice in the news and in the spotlight!

We produce original content, news articles, a curated calendar of industry events and a database of women IT, Media and Advertising associations.

    Do you want an experienced opinion on a job issue?
    Moonshot Manager is here to answer!

      Moonshot community sharing thoughts and ideas, in a anonymous, safe environment.