Global Innovation Index 2014: The Human Factor

Filed Under Innovation

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Arwen Heredia

August 11, 2014

As we continue to explore the global effects of innovation, idea management, crowdsourcing, and data science, it’s beneficial to keep an eye on developments and shifting trends in regions all over the world — especially in relationship to the considerable impact innovation has on economics, politics, and emerging industries.

This year’s Global Innovation Index, an annual report that uses a wealth of data to rank world economies’ innovation capabilities and results, focuses on these aspects of innovation through the lens of human contributions on the individual and team level.

Functions and Findings

The topic of innovation, both theoretically and applicably, is a matter of the utmost importance to today’s competitive companies. Fully understanding how each piece of the process connects and interacts is critical when organizations create policies that are intended to drive economic development and build environments that are more ‘innovation-prone’. Because the GII recognizes innovation’s crucial role in these actions, the annual report is designed to capture and predict trends while demonstrating the implications of where different economies are — and where they’re headed. From the report:

“Statistically capturing this human contribution to innovation is a daunting challenge. Even more complex are the challenges faced by all those who try to properly nurture the human factor in innovation.

The GII recognizes the key role of innovation as a driver of economic growth and well-being. It aims to capture the multi-dimensional facets of innovation and to be applicable to developed and emerging economies alike. In doing so, it helps policy makers and business leaders move beyond one-dimensional innovation metrics towards a more holistic analysis of innovation drivers and outcomes. [We] like to think of the GII as a ‘tool for action’ for decision makers with the goal of improving countries’ innovation performances. Numerous workshops in different countries have brought innovation actors together around the GII results with the aim of improv- ing data availability, boosting the country’s innovation performance, and designing fresh policy actions that are targeted for effective impact. These exchanges on the ground also generate feedback that, in turn, improves the GII.”

A Framework for Innovation

With these things in mind, the GII carefully crafted a framework with which to obtain and analyze massive amounts of data from all over the world. They explain:

“For this seventh edition, the Global Innovation Index 2014 (GII) covers 143 economies, accounting for 92.9% of the world’s population and 98.3% of the world’s Gross Domestic Product (in US Dollars).

Global Innovation Index 2014 (GII) relies on two sub-indices, the Innovation Input Sub-Index and the Innovation Output Sub-Index, each built around key pillars.

Five input pillars capture elements of the national economy that enable innovative activities: (1) Institutions, (2) Human capital and research, (3) Infrastructure, (4) Market sophistication, and (5) Business sophistication. Two output pillars capture actual evidence of innovation outputs: (6) Knowledge and technology outputs and (7) Creative outputs.”


Global Innovation Index 2014 Conceptual Framework

Global Innovation Index 2014 Conceptual Framework

To learn more, visit the GII website, check out last year’s findings, or download the full report here.