Although the innovation potential of Castilla y León is lower than the national average, its indicators have improved steadily and the regional government of Castilla y León has demonstrated its commitment to RDI activity over the last few years.
The research and development (R&D) expenditures in the region have decreased between 2012 and 2014 (from €617.5m to €526.8m). However it slightly recovered in 2015, being at €536.0m (Eurostat, 2018). This represents 1.0% of the regional GDP, which is below the national average (1.2%) and below the EU-28 average (2.0%). In 2015, 53.7% of the R&D expenditures have been assured by private companies, which is slightly above the national average (52.5%) (Eurostat, 2018).
Castilla y León’s commitment to science, technology and innovation has resulted in sustained growth in RDI expenditure over the last decade. In the period 1996-2013, the budget for science and technology has multiplied by a factor of 15, from €15.3m in 1996 to €228.4m in 2013. Moreover, investment in RDI and communication technologies was €2,417.9 million in the last decade (2002-2011), while the budget for the period 2007-2013 is already €2,042 million.
The employment in the high tech sector in the region has been decreasing since 2012. In 2017, 18,100 employees worked in this sector (Eurostat, 2018), representing 2.6% of the national employment in the area and 1.9% of the total employment (against the EU-28 average of 4.0%).
The population aged 30-34 with tertiary education in Castilla y León has been fluctuating over the years, being at 39.5% in 2017 (Eurostat, 2018). This is below the national average (41.2%) and below the EU-28 average (39.9%).
In Castilla y León, 99.0% of the households had internet access at home in 2017, which is in line with the national average (Eurostat, 2018).
In terms of patent applications, the region has submitted 12.3 patent applications per million inhabitants to the EPO in 2012, which is much lower than the national average (27.4) (Eurostat, 2018).