NUR-SULTAN – Kazakhstan is ranked 79th out of 132 economies for its innovation capabilities, taking third place among the 10 economies in Central and Southern Asia, according to the Global Innovation Index 2021.
The top three economies by income group are Switzerland, Sweden and the United States of America (High-income); China, Bulgaria, Malaysia (Upper middle-income); Viet Nam, India, Ukraine (Lower middle-income); and Rwanda, Tajikistan, Malawi (Low-income).
The Global Innovation Index is published annually by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), a specialized agency of the United Nations. Recognizing that innovation is a key driver of economic development, it aims to provide an innovation ranking and a rich analysis referencing around 130 economies.
“A successful innovation system “balances knowledge creation, exploration and investments – the innovation inputs – with the production of ideas and technologies toward application, exploitation and impact – the innovation outputs,” reads the report.
According to the report, Kazakhstan performed better in terms of innovation inputs than outputs in 2021. In comparison to its amount of innovation investment, the country produces less innovation outputs. Kazakhstan is also ranked 61st in terms of innovation inputs, which is lower than last year but higher than in 2019.
Kazakhstan outperforms the upper middle-income economies in three pillars: institutions, human capital and research, and infrastructure.
Among Central and South Asian countries, the country outperforms the regional average in terms of institutions, human capital and research, infrastructure, and business sophistication.
The country outperforms in institutional innovations while underperforming in creative outputs, the report concludes.
Prior to the pandemic, investment in innovation was at an all-time high, with research and development growing at an unprecedented 8.5 percent in 2019. When COVID-19 struck, innovation investments were severely reduced.
The Global Innovation Index 2021 finds that investment in innovation has shown considerable resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic, frequently hitting new highs, but that it differs across industries and countries. For example, only a few economies have continuously produced peak innovation performance. Switzerland, Sweden, the United States, and the United Kingdom have all ranked among the top five in the past three years, while South Korea joined the top five of the Global Innovation Index for the first time in 2021.