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The Most Innovative Countries successful the World 2022

Since 2000, planetary concern successful probe and improvement (R&D) has tripled to $2.4 trillion.

R&D walk is besides casting a wider planetary net. In 1960, the U.S. made up astir 70% of planetary R&D spending, and by 2020 this had fallen to 30%. From occupation instauration and nationalist wellness to nationalist information and concern competitiveness, R&D plays a captious relation successful a country’s economical maturation and innovation, impacting astir each country of society—either straight oregon indirectly.

Along with R&D spend, different cardinal ingredients play an important relation successful driving advancement and innovation. These see technological adoption, technological research, and task superior activity, among others.

The supra infographic ranks the world’s astir innovative economies utilizing information from the UN’s WIPO Global Innovation Index.

What Defines an Innovative Economy?

Innovation is inherently challenging to quantify, but the Global Innovation Index is simply a longstanding effort to bash conscionable that.

The model utilized for the scale was designed to make a much implicit analysis, comprising of 81 indicators crossed 7 categories to cipher a country’s score:

7 CategoriesExample Indicators
🧳 Business SophisticationBusiness R&D spend, nett inflows of overseas nonstop investment
📈 Market SophisticationSize of economy’s GDP, strength of section marketplace competition
🛣️ InfrastructureRoad, hospital, schoolhouse construction, vigor efficiency
👩‍🏫 Human Capital & ResearchGovernment backing per pupil, prime of technological and probe institutions
🏛️ InstitutionsPolitical stableness and safety, easiness of starting a business
💡 Creative OutputsMost invaluable brands, concern plan applications, trademark applications
👨‍💻 Knowledge and Technology OutputsPatent applications, summation successful labour productivity, spending connected software

As the supra array shows, the model aims to place indicators that foster an innovative situation and breakthrough technologies.

It’s worthy noting that each country’s wide innovation people is simply a premix of these categories, and countries with akin scores tin beryllium beardown successful antithetic areas.

The 50 Most Innovative Countries successful 2022

Switzerland ranks astatine the top⁠ for the 12th twelvemonth successful a row—above the U.S., South Korea, and Israel.

For many, this whitethorn travel arsenic a surprise. However, the country’s intelligence spot rules are considered world-class, and they are complemented by beardown collaboration betwixt universities and industry. In addition, the state attracts apical endowment acknowledgment to its precocious prime of living.

At 2nd is the United States, which is simply a apical spender connected R&D astatine implicit $700 billion per year. Globally, 4 of the 5 apical R&D spending companies are successful America: Amazon ($42.7 billion), Alphabet ($27.6 billion), Microsoft ($19.3 billion), and Apple ($18.8 billion).

RankCountry / RegionScore
1🇨🇭 Switzerland64.6
2🇺🇲 U.S. 61.8
3🇸🇪 Sweden61.6
4🇬🇧 United Kingdom59.7
5🇳🇱 Netherlands58.0
6🇰🇷 South Korea57.8
7🇸🇬 Singapore57.3
8🇩🇪 Germany57.2
9🇫🇮 Finland56.9
10🇩🇰 Denmark55.9
11🇨🇳 China55.3
12🇫🇷 France55.0
13🇯🇵 Japan53.6
14🇭🇰 Hong Kong51.8
15🇨🇦 Canada50.8
16🇮🇱 Israel50.2
17🇦🇹 Austria50.2
18🇪🇪 Estonia50.2
19🇱🇺 Luxembourg49.8
20🇮🇸 Iceland49.5
21🇲🇹 Malta49.1
22🇳🇴 Norway48.8
23🇮🇪 Ireland48.5
24🇳🇿 New Zealand47.2
25🇦🇺 Australia47.1
26🇧🇪 Belgium46.9
27🇨🇾 Cyprus46.2
28🇮🇹 Italy46.1
29🇪🇸 Spain44.6
30🇨🇿 Czech Republic42.8
31🇦🇪 United Arab Emirates42.1
32🇵🇹 Portugal42.1
33🇸🇮 Slovenia40.6
34🇭🇺 Hungary39.8
35🇧🇬 Bulgaria39.5
36🇲🇾 Malaysia38.7
37🇹🇷 Turkey38.1
38🇵🇱 Poland37.5
39🇱🇹 Lithuania37.4
40🇮🇳 India36.6
41🇱🇻 Latvia36.5
42🇭🇷 Croatia35.6
43🇹🇭 Thailand34.9
44🇬🇷 Greece34.5
45🇲🇺 Mauritius34.4
46🇸🇰 Slovakia34.3
47🇷🇺 Russia34.3
48🇻🇳 Vietnam34.3
49🇷🇴 Romania34.1
50🇨🇱 Chile34.0

Countries crossed Europe besides diagnostic prominently successful the apical 10, including Sweden (#3), the United Kingdom (#4) and the Netherlands (#5).

South Korea (#6), is known for its precocious R&D intensity. This is driven by its concern conglomerates, known arsenic chaebols, that are mostly family-owned. Samsung and LG are among its largest companies, known for their precocious grade of corporate-academic collaboration.

Below, we volition instrumentality a person look astatine the astir innovative countries by region.

North America

In North America, the U.S. ranks highest. The state has agelong been known arsenic a planetary person successful innovation, with a beardown way grounds of introducing caller ideas and technologies that person transformed the mode we unrecorded and work. The U.S. ranks #1 successful a fig of indicators, including university-industry R&D collaboration and intangible plus intensity.

Ranking 2nd successful the portion is Canada (Global rank: #15). Across each countries, it ranks archetypal connected measures of associated task and strategical alliances per cardinal dollars of GDP (PPP) and fig of task superior (VC) recipients per cardinal dollars of GDP (PPP). In 2021, VC concern topped $14.7 billion crossed 752 deals.

Most Innovative Countries successful North America

Another absorbing illustration is Honduras (#113). Driving innovation successful the state is simply a new economical zoning experimentation called Zones for Economic Development and Employment (ZEDEs).

To date, these zones person attracted astir a 4th of a cardinal dollars successful backstage concern backing and person created thousands of caller jobs.

South America

Chile (#50) ranks archetypal crossed the region, acknowledgment to its promising tech sector. To date, it is location to an estimated 8,000 tech companies. The state besides has the highest standard of mobile connectivity successful the region. In precocious 2021, it launched the archetypal 5G web successful South America.

Most Innovative Countries South America

Following Chile is Brazil (#54), which saw a grounds fig of IPOs successful 2021 that were valued astatine astir $7 billion.

Middle East and Central Asia

As the highest ranked successful the region, Israel (#16) is the sole state globally that spends implicit 5% of GDP connected R&D. Overall, it is simply a planetary person successful patent applications and accusation and connection exertion (ICT) services exports.

For context, the country’s density of start-ups per capita is 16 times that of Europe.

Most Innovative Countries successful Middle East and Central Asia

The tiny land federation of Cyprus (#27) follows successful second, supported by authorities backing focused connected start-ups. Meanwhile, Turkey (#37) successful fourth, is location to six unicorns*, fostered by its improvement of a megatech corridor done Istanbul to Izmir.

*A unicorn is simply a privately-held startup that has a valuation of implicit $1 billion.


With 15 of the apical 25 economies successful the world, Europe is simply a powerhouse for fostering innovative ecosystems.

The continent is besides a person successful societal progress, equality, and beingness satisfaction. The portion scores 30 connected inequality according to the Gini Index compared to 41 for America.

Most Innovative Countries successful Europe
For many, technological output isn’t the archetypal happening that comes to caput erstwhile they deliberation of Europe, but VC deals surged implicit 53% successful 2021. London, Berlin, and Paris were starring cities for VC activity.

East Asia and Oceania

South Korea (#6) ranks highest crossed East Asia and Oceania, and has established itself arsenic a person successful exertion and innovation connected the planetary stage. Through its New Deal initiative, the authorities is spearheading projects connected astute healthcare, AI, and astute concern complexes. At the aforesaid time, it is accelerating the operation of eco-friendly infrastructure and renewable energy.

South Korea’s Hyundai and its subsidiary Kia person made considerable ground successful electrical conveyance (EV) production, comprising 9% of the U.S. EV market, the second-highest stock aft Tesla.

Most Innovative Countries successful East Asia

China sits conscionable extracurricular the planetary apical 10, and present ranks #1 successful aggregate indicators, including labour productivity maturation and trademarks by origin. China’s economical output per employed idiosyncratic accrued an awesome 4.2% annually from 2011 to 2019, connected average.


The highest ranked successful Africa is the land federation of Mauritius (#45).

Underscoring its fertile is the spot of its institutions and marketplace sophistication. Meanwhile, the authorities is accelerating concern successful tech incubators, research-business collaboration, and taxation incentives for R&D investment.

Most Innovative Countries successful Africa

South Africa (#61) follows Mauritius connected the list, with the metropolis of Cape Town attracting a projected $300 million Amazon headquarters.

Panasonic opened their office successful Cape Town successful 2018. Oracle, IBM, Google, and Microsoft besides person offices successful the country’s expanding tech hub.

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