The much-awaited Global
Innovation Index (GII) 2018 report has finally been released. Among
a plethora of other ‘bests’ and ‘mosts’, Singapore is also the world’s most
innovative country outside of Europe!
The overall GII score
is calculated as the simple average of the Input and Output Sub-Index scores.
The report shows that Singapore ranks fifth worldwide with a score of 59.80
following Switzerland (68.40), the Netherlands (63.30), Sweden (63.10), and the
United Kingdom (60.10).
Singapore has moved up
two positions and takes the 5th spot this year. It has retained its top spot in
the Innovation Input Sub-Index and gained two positions in the Innovation
Output Sub-Index (15th). Singapore’s Efficiency ratio is 63 and its GDP is PPP$
513.7. Its GDP per capita is PPP$ 93,905.
Singapore ranks in the
top 5 in all input pillars, confirming that it is the leading country in the Institutions
sub-index. It also gained a top rank in Human capital and research, the pillar which
gauges the human capital of countries (score: 73.28), although this is partly
due to data becoming unavailable on two indicators— government funding per
pupil and school life expectancy.
It also holds 2nd position in Business sophistication (the fifth
enabler pillar which aims to capture a country’s level of business
sophistication to assess how conducive firms are to innovation activity) with a
score of 65.08.
In terms of innovation
outputs, Singapore maintains its 11th position in Knowledge and technology
outputs, the pillar that covers all those variables that are traditionally
thought to be the fruits of inventions and or innovations; Singapore’s score
here is 51.27.
Singapore lost three
spots in Creative outputs (35th; score: 39.60) but, at the sub-pillar level, Singapore still holds a
top rank in Political environment (rank
1; score of 94.65), Regulatory
environment, and Tertiary education. Singapore is at the 2nd
position in Investment this year.
as relative weaknesses include expenditure on education, pupil-teacher ratio,
environmental performance, productivity growth, and trademarks and industrial
designs by origin.
Apart from these areas
of opportunity, Singapore keeps its 1st place in various indicators, including
government effectiveness, regulatory quality, PISA results, IP payments, and
This year Singapore
also gains (or re-gains) a top rank in five other indicators: political
stability and safety, market capitalization, FDI inflows, high- and medium-high-tech
manufactures, and high-tech exports.
Chapter 11 of the GII
hails Singapore as ‘A
Living Lab for Renewable Energy’.
From launching the world’s largest floating
photovoltaic (PV) test bed to building the first industrial micro-grid test
system in South East Asia, Singapore consistently demonstrates that it can be a
‘Living Lab’ for renewable energy (RE) innovators to test their ideas. Beyond
testing, innovators can leverage Singapore’s world-class legal framework,
robust intellectual property (IP) regime, conducive business environment, and
extensive global networks to commercialize their innovative RE ideas,
transforming them into viable technologies for global markets.
The GII report also commends for Singapore
for being a leading example of innovation in green technology. It notes that Singapore
has pumped S$2.04 billion into R&D for the clean technology sector, which
includes environment and water solutions, since 2006.
Singapore successfully developed and installed 10 different floating support
structures for PV systems that were constructed by both local and overseas
companies on the Tengeh Reservoir in 2016 to determine the most suitable system
for Singapore. Building on the results of the test bed, the Public Utilities
Board (the nation’s water agency) is now exploring the feasibility of deploying
a 50 megawatt (MW) floating solar PV system at the Tengeh Reservoir. The amount
of energy generated from such a system could potentially power about 12,500
average households in Singapore.
Mr Daren Tang, Chief
Executive of IPOS, said, “Innovation is becoming a driving force in our economy
and globally. The GII 2018 accolade supports the advancement of Singapore’s IP
and innovation agenda. Being ranked fifth in a credible global study gives
greater impetus for our enterprises and entrepreneurs to keep using innovation
and leveraging their intangible assets to grow from Singapore to the world.”