Nordic countries worldwide innovation leaders

The Nordic countries continue to rank amongst the innovation leaders worldwide. This is one of the main findings of the sixth edition of the European Innovation Scoreboard. The report presents a comparative analysis of the innovation performance of European countries, the US and Japan.
Practically all European countries excel in one or another dimension of innovation, but only a few of them achieve an overall performance that grants world innovation leadership. The countries studies were the 27 EU Member States, Croatia, Turkey, Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, the US and Japan. Based on their overall innovation score and their recent historical trend, the authors group countries into four categories:
- Innovation leaders: Sweden, Switzerland, Finland, Denmark, Germany and Japan
- Innovation followers: UK, Iceland, France, Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Ireland, US
- Catching-up countries: Slovenia, Czech Republic, Lithuania, Portugal, Poland, Latvia, Greece, Bulgaria, Cyprus and Romania
- Trailing countries: Estonia, Spain, Italy, Malta, Hungary, Croatia and Slovakia

Luxembourg, Norway and Turkey would not fit in any of these categories.

The European Innovation Scoreboard, published on 22 February 2007, is prepared by the Maastricht Economic Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT) assisted by the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission. It measures the innovation performance of a country’s economy based on a wide range of indicators, from education to expenditure in Information and Communication Technologies, investment in R&D or number of patents.

Individual summaries of the innovation performance of all 27 Member States are available here.