The 2020 edition of the Global Innovation Index (GII) released on 2 September 2020 shows India jumped four places to rank at 48th position since 2019. The index, compiled by World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) along with Cornell University and the INSEAD business school, presents the latest global innovation trends and annual innovation ranking of 131 economies. Switzerland bagged the first spot in the GII ranking followed by Sweden, United States of America, United Kingdom and Netherlands.
  1. Moving up four positions since last year, India became the third most innovative lower middle-income economy in the world. 
  2. The report noted that the jump can be attributed to newly available indicators and improvements in various areas of the GII.
  3. India ranks in the top 15 in indicators such as ICT services exports, government online services, graduates in science and engineering, and R&D-intensive global companies.
  4. Thanks to universities such as the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay and Delhi and the Indian Institute of Science in Bengaluru, and its top scientific publications, India is the lower middle-income economy with the highest innovation quality, the report noted.
  5. India increased the most in three pillars: Institutions (61, from 77 in 2019), business sophistication (55, from 65 in 2019), and creative outputs (64, from 78 in 2019).
  6. Under institutions, the country’s rank on indicators, such as political and operational stability (from 91 to 83), government effectiveness (from 65 to 55), and ease of resolving insolvency (from 95 to 47), improved remarkably.
  7. Under business sophistication, indicators such as expenditure financed by business was not available last year; this time India came in at 48.
  8. India also bettered its rank in both intellectual property payments (27, from 29 in 2019) and research talent (38, from 46 in 2019).
  9. Under creative outputs, India increased its ranking by a combination of performance improvements and model changes. 
  10. It gained 18 places in cultural and creative services exports to 21 and it ranked 31 on the new indicator on global brands, thanks to its 164 brands in the top 5,000, led by Tata Group.
  11. However, India continued to lag in infrastructure, even as it moved up four notches to come in at 75, from 79 in 2019. Also, it lost seven places to move down to 60 in human capital and research, from 53 in 2019.
  12. India came out as an innovation achiever for the tenth consecutive year. It was so because India was on the list of the first 10 countries, income-group wise.
  13. However, Vietnam continued to leave India behind by coming in at 42, topping the list of lower middle-income groups. Ukraine came in second, improving its ranking to 45, from 47 in 2019.
  14. The report titled Who Will Finance Innovation? said gross domestic expenditure on research and development (GERD) in India increased to $63.2 billion in purchasing power parity terms in 2017–2018, from $50.3 billion in 2014–2015, accounting for 2.9-per cent share in the world.
  15. GERD in India is mainly driven by the government sector, of which 45.4 percent is the central government, 6.4 per cent state governments, 6.8 per cent higher education, and 41.4 per cent industry — with 4.6 per cent from public sector industry and 36.8 per cent from the private sector during the year.
  16. China, India, the Philippines and Vietnam have made the most progress on the index in recent years, with all four now among the top 50.
  17. China, which is the only middle-income economy among the top 30, now holds the 14th place.