European Innovation Scoreboard 2018


The European Innovation Scoreboard (EIS) provides a comparative analysis of the research and innovation performance of the EU Member States and selected third countries.

The EIS measurement framework distinguishes between four main types of indicators (Framework conditions, Investments, Innovation activities, Impacts) and ten innovation dimensions, capturing in total 27 different indicators. Framework conditions capture the main drivers of innovation performance external to the firm and cover three innovation dimensions: Human resources, Attractive research systems, as well as Innovation-friendly environment. Investments capture public and private investment in research and innovation and cover two dimensions: Finance and support and Firm investments. Innovation activities capture the innovation efforts at the level of the firm, grouped in three innovation dimensions: Innovators, Linkages, and Intellectual assets. Impacts cover the effects of firms' innovation activities in two innovation dimensions: Employment impacts and Sales effects.

For each country, an overall innovation performance is measured using a composite indicator building on an unweighted average of the 27 indicators - the Summary Innovation Index. Four performance groups are obtained from the results of the Summary Innovation Index.

Innovation leaders:

Denmark, Finland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Sweden, and the United Kingdom, with a performance more than 20% above the EU average.

Strong innovators:

Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, and Slovenia, with a performance between 90% and 120% of the EU average.

Moderate innovators:

Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, and Spain, with a performance between 50% and 90% of the EU average.

Modest innovators:

Bulgaria and Romania, with a performance below 50% of the EU average.

Belgium ranks 8th in the IUS 2018 behind the six innovation leaders and one strong innovator (Germany). The innovation performance of Belgium relative to that of the EU in 2010 has increased over time.

Relative strengths of the innovation system are in Attractive research systems (International scientific co-publications, Most cited publications, Foreign doctorate students), Linkages in which Belgium is the overall leader (Innovative SMEs collaborating with others, Public-private co-publications, Private co-funding of public R&D expenditure), Innovators (SMEs product/process innovations, SMEs marketing/organizational innovations, SMEs innovating in-house) and Firm investments (with the exception of Non-R&D innovation expenditures). Good performances also in particular indicators in other innovation dimensions: Population with tertiary education and Broadband penetration.

Relative weaknesses are in Employment impacts (due to the indicator Employment fast-growing enterprises), Sales impacts (due to the indicators Medium and high-tech product exports and Sales of new-to-market/firm innovations) and Intellectual assets (due to the indicators Design applications and PCT patent applications). Other indicators in other innovation dimensions are below the EU average: Lifelong learning, Opportunity-driven entrepreneurship and Non-R&D innovation expenditures.

Over the period 2010-2017, performances have improved most strongly in Attractive research systems, Firm investments and Human resources. Performances have worsened in Innovation-friendly environment, Finance and support, Intellectual assets and Sales Impacts.