Monday, June 24, 2024

PH slides by a notch to 51st spot in 2021 Global Innovation Index

Due to the pandemic and decreasing budget for research and development (R&D), the Philippines fell by a notch from 50th place last year to the 51st spot in the Global Innovation Index (GII) 2021 report

The Global Innovation Index (GII) is published yearly by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), a specialized agency of the United Nations. It covered 132 economies for this year’s edition.

Despite the downgrade, top government officials stressed in an inter-agency virtual press conference held on Tuesday, Sept. 21, the country’s status as an “innovation achiever” for the third consecutive year.

The officials said although the country’s 2021 GII score is a notch lower compared to its 2020 ranking, the good innovation performance of the Philippines resulted in its inclusion to the list of five countries in the world that made significant progress in the GII over time, along with China, Turkey, Vietnam, and India.

In the report, the Philippines ranked 4th among the 34 lower middle-income group economies and 11th among the 17 economies in Southeast Asia, East Asia, and Oceania.  With roughly 80 indicators, the GII ranks the countries in the world with their innovation capabilities.

In the last three years, the innovation inputs or the investments for these activities in the Philippines remain low, with the country ranking now at 72 compared to rank 70 in 2020 and rank 76 in 2019. 

However, despite the low input, government officials said the ranking for innovation outputs or the resulting programs and technologies from such investments, is rising with the Philippines at 40th spot in 2021, a step higher from the 41st ranking in 2020.

Since 2007, the budget for research and development dramatically increased and averaged at about 0.65% of the National Budget (GAA).  However, the share of R&D in the national budget in the last two years significantly decreased from 0.76% in 2019 to 0.39% in 2021.

“Our country’s modest investments in R&D can only go so far,” related DOST undersecretary for R&D Rowena Cristina L. Guevara. “As an initiative to sustain innovation efforts, the DOST is lobbying for the passage of the Science for Change (S4CP) Bill.  Approval of the said bill would mean the continuation of the inclusive, equitable and sustained efforts for innovation, given the optimal use of our resources for R&D.”

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