On September 20, 2021, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) released Global Innovation Index 2021 (hereinafter referred to as “the GII”). China ranks 12th, up 2 places from 2020. The GII speaks highly of China's progress in innovation and emphasizes the importance of government’s decision-making and incentives in promoting innovation.
Switzerland tops the list for the 11th consecutive year, followed by Sweden, the United States of America (U.S.), the United Kingdom (U.K.) and Republic of Korea; China ranks 12th, topping middle-income economies and surpassing developed economies such as Japan, Israel and Canada. Since 2013, China's global innovation index ranking has risen steadily for 9 consecutive years, with a strong upward momentum; South Korea ranks fifth in 2021 from tenth in 2020, with an obvious upward trend. The middle-income economies such as Turkey (41st), Vietnam (44th) and India (46th) have risen significantly in the past 10 years and are changing the global innovation landscape.
As shown in the GII, China leads the world in two general indicators – innovation input, trade, diversification and market scale. Subdivision indicators such as PISA scales in reading, maths and science, domestic market scale, the proportion of firms offering formal training, domestic industry diversification, the top 3 global corporate R&D investors, the top 3 QS university ranking, state of cluster development and depth, the proportion of gross capital formation in GDP, the proportion of GERD financed by abroad rank high. This shows that China has taken more measures to promote industry-university-research cooperation, develop local signature industries, and strengthen the real economy, creating a better environment for enterprises to innovate and develop.
From the indicators of innovation outputs, China's strengths are concentrated in intangible assets, knowledge creation and knowledge impact. Among these, China’s levels of patents, trademarks and industrial designs by origin, scaled by GDP, and the percentage of creative goods exports in total trade have achieved global leadership. In 2021, the general indicator of knowledge diffusion has made significant progress, with the proportion of intellectual property receipts in total trade in particular continuing to make improvements, indicating that China is gradually transforming from a big country of introducing IPR to a big country of creating IPR.
(Reporter: Pan Xutao)