EU Science Hub

Can innovation help solve societal challenges?

Jun 25 2020

JRC's latest edition of the Innovation Output Indicator fed into the 2020 edition of the Commission's Science, Research and Innovation performance of the EU (SRIP) Report.

The SRIP report reveals that research and innovation play a key role in providing solutions to overcome immediate challenges such as the coronavirus pandemic and making our society more resilient in the longer term.

The report is a biennial Commission's flagship publication, which analyses Europe's performance in science, research and innovation and the driving factors behind that performance in a global context.

The JRC traditionally contributes to the SRIP report through the development and refinement of the Innovation Output Indicator, based on the expertise and work conducted at the European Commission’s Competence Centre on Composite Indicators and Scoreboards.

Developed by the Commission at the request of the European Council and presented for the first time in a Communication and a Staff Working Document adopted by the Commission in 2013, the Innovation Output Indicator is a composite indicator that measures the extent to which ideas stemming from innovative sectors are capable of reaching the market providing better jobs and making Europe more competitive.

The recently released Innovation Output Indicator 2019 shows that the EU is falling short in innovation output compared to the United States and Japan, though there is some evidence of convergence as the gap has somewhat declined since 2011.

The differences between countries largely depend on both the innovation capacity and the structure of the economy. The special focus of the 2019 update on “Global Innovation Champions” emphasises the important role for radical innovations in the EU of small- and medium-sized enterprises.

The Innovation Output Indicator is fundamental in complementing the R&D intensity indicator (3% target of the Europe 2020 strategy), the Commission's European Innovation Scoreboard  and its derived composite indicator - the Summary Innovation Index - by focusing on innovation output.

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