As founder and co-editor of the Global Innovation Index, to celebrate its sixth edition, I moderated a panel discussion of university, industry and government experts introduced by President David Skorton, last July 8, 2013, at the Cornell Club.
In my initial presentation of the Report key findings, I stressed that innovation today clearly has become a global game, and that the core ingredient in an ecosystem of innovation is talent – the human capital that brings the best ideas, creativity and invention to bear. The availability of human capital is one of the many factors used to calculate the GII; but not all innovation inputs and outputs are of equal quality, and hence not all of them have the same impact.
Metrics have been refined over the years to add more elements of quality, as opposed to quantitative factors. For example, this year’s index includes the performance of the top 3 universities in each economy, the filing of patents in multiple countries (patent family applications), and an assessment of the impact of scientific publications as measured by the number of citations.
While the top 18 positions are taken by high-income economies, BRIC nations are the best performers among middle-income countries on these three key indicators.
This year’s GII theme, ‘the local dynamics of innovation’, reflects the importance of local and regional hubs around universities, companies, specialized suppliers and service providers. An often-cited example of regional innovation is Cornell NYC Tech. Cornell Tech Dean and Vice Provost Dan Huttenlocher described how the new campus is trailblazing such areas as speeding up the innovation pipeline as well as engaging with customers earlier in the creative process.
Francis Gurry, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization, stressed that the reason why we have intellectual property is innovation, because is a major component of economic growth, the social and economic outcome we wish to achieve.
Teresa Stanek Rea, Acting Undersecretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce, expounded on the importance of a strong IP system serving the common good in the United States and beyond.
Barry Jaruzelski, Senior Partner at Booz & Company, a long-time Knowledge Partner to the GII, brought an industry perspective to the discussion.
Robert Kahn, who spearheaded creation of the Internet, now Chairman, CEO and President of the Corporation for National Research Initiatives talked about the early days of the Internet and the innovative efforts that spurred it.
Besides economic and social well-being, there is a very fundamental human reason why innovation is important, it is just simply a very key way to inspire young people … to create, to give voice to their own leadership and their own potential.
Download the slides prepared for the New York panel discussion, July 8, 2013, which include the above chart and more, here.
Soumitra Dutta, Anne and Elmer Lindseth Dean, Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management, Cornell University