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5th September 2018

Ireland Recognised in Top Ten Innovation Rankings Globally and Across Europe

Paul Healy, Chief Executive Skillnet Ireland welcomed Ireland’s strong innovation performance reported in two recent internationally recognised rankings; Global Innovation Index 2018, released jointly by WIPO, Cornell University, INSEAD and the 2018 GII Knowledge Partners (July 10) and the European Commission’s European Innovation Scoreboard 2018 (June 22). Ireland ranks in the top ten of both reports.

About the innovation rankings

Now in its 11th year, the Global Innovation Index 2018 provides detailed metrics about the innovation performance of 126 countries across 80 indicators including innovation, political environment, education, infrastructure and business sophistication. The annual European Innovation Scoreboard 2018 provides a comparative assessment of the research and innovation performance of the EU Member States and the relative strengths and weaknesses of their research and innovation systems.

Speaking following the recent announcements, Paul Healy said: It’s encouraging to see Ireland rank 10th  in the Global Innovation Index 2018, maintaining a position in the top ten since 2015. Ireland also rose to 9th place in the recent European Innovation Scoreboard. This shows a positive trend of Ireland being recognised as a leading innovator across Europe and on a global scale.

We score highest in Knowledge and technology outputs (4th) and Infrastructure (4th) in the 2018 Global Innovation Index. Ireland continues to stand out in translating innovation investments into results. We rank first in knowledge diffusion due to high FDI outflows and ICT services exports.  In the European Innovation Scoreboard, Ireland is the EU leader in innovation in small and medium-sized companies (SMEs), employment impacts of innovation and the sales impacts of innovation.  Disappointedly the needle has not shifted on the lifelong learning indicator. This of course is a growing concern, particularly in light of an ever-widening productivity gap between indigenous SMEs and the multinationals based in Ireland. In 2017 both the OECD and the National Competitiveness Council identified the low uptake of lifelong learning and management development in indigenous SMEs as causal factors in the productivity gap.

Sustaining and improving our national competitiveness through upskilling and lifelong learning goes to the heart of what Skillnet Ireland does. As advocates for workforce development Skillnet Ireland will, in conjunction with our enterprise partners, continue to increase our engagement with SMEs and play a key role in supplying skills to the Irish workforce by developing new innovative programmes. If Ireland is to meet the targets set out in the 2025 National Skills Strategy, and navigate the global megatrends, both employers and workers will need to prioritise investment in lifelong learning, now and into the future.”

For a more in depth view read the Global Innovation Index 2018 and the European Commission’s European Innovation Scoreboard 2018 reports in full.

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