INNOVATION IN EUROPE A Comparative Study
Abstract: Innovation is one of the major factors of the country’s development and wealth. It is generally accepted that economically strong countries can afford to dedicate more funds to research and development, and as such, the economy and innovation are highly interconnected. In addition, while a strong economy allows for more innovation, innovation is recognized as a driver of the economy. In the past decades, many attempts have been pursued to develop the best innovation measures and apply them to identify the most innovative states. The task proved to be difficult, mainly because of the complexity of the topic and a vast number of factors that can potentially contribute to the country’s innovation performance.Moreover, there is an ongoing discussion among experts regarding what innovation is, how to measure it, and what factors should be included in the evaluation framework. The aim of the current study looks at three main innovation indices and attempts to position all 28 European Union member countries in terms of innovation performance. Further, the study also attempts to compare the results of all three indices and discuss similarities and discrepancies which position the same country differently depending on the applied framework. The study is based on existing innovation performances such as the Global Innovation Index, the Bloomberg Innovation Index, or the Global Competitiveness Report. Bivariate analysis and simple data visualization techniques have been applied to reveal differences and similarities and to draw conclusions.The study revealed that the European Union is generally very innovative, which is confirmed by high ranking positions of each of the European Union member states within all three innovation rankings. Further, performed bivariate analysis and data visualization show significant methodological discrepancies of all three frameworks, which result in different ranking outcomes. These innovation indices often play an essential role in national policy developments and are an indication of the country’s status and prestige; as such achieving uniform or similar results despite applied framework is of high importance.
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