Translation: Skolkovo In The Ratings

Russia claims one of the top places in a new ratings system of national innovation compiled by Bloomberg.

According to the latest studies, the US was recognized as the world’s most innovative country in a new rating. This is not surprising for a country that hosts the likes of Apple and Microsoft. But Russia at least had the highest ranking among the BRICS.

The rating of the most innovative countries was compiled by the Bloomberg news agency. Specialists studied more than 200 countries and autonomous regions. Their total number was reduced 96, out of which the top 50 were selected.

The rankings were built on the basis of seven criteria. First, the intensity of R&D spending as a percentage of GDP. Second, the level of labor productivity – that is, the GDP per worker and per hour of working time.

The third criterion was the concentration of high technologies – the percentage of public high-tech companies working in spheres such as aerospace, defense, biotech, programming, semiconductors, the Internet, hardware, and renewable energy.

The fourth factor was the number of researchers per one million persons. Fifth, industrial productivity – including the quantity of products with a high share of R&D with respect to the overall quantity of industrial products.

Sixth, the level of education – the number of people with a second higher degree, as well as the number of students working in science, engineering, industry, and construction. The number of university graduates per year and the percentage of people with a higher education relative to the overall workforce were also accounted for. The last criterion was patent creation, that is, the number of patents per million people and spending on R&D.

Combining all these indicators, Bloomberg put the US in first place on this rating. Its best performance was in the concentration of high technologies, where it took first place; on the other hand, in terms of industrial productivity in sectors with a high share of R&D, the US was only 52nd.

Second place was taken by South Korea. A fairly curious fact, if one views this in the light of the intensive patent war between America’s Apple and Korea’s Samsung for the smartphone market. Incidentally, it is precisely in the sphere of patents activity that South Korea does best – it occupies first place in this category.

Germany is in third place, Finland is in fourth, and Sweden rounds up the top five. At 14th place, Russia did not manage to make the top ten. Nonetheless, it managed to overtake all its BRICS peers. China found itself in 29th place, South Africa – in 50th. The others [PR: India and Brazil] did not make it into the Top 50.

In addition, Russia outpaces all its neighbors in the former USSR. The highest place occupied by any of the rest was taken by Estonia, which was at 31st position. In 33rd place – Latvia, in 42nd place – Ukraine, in 44th place – Latvia, and in 49th place – Belarus.

Russia’s best performance is in the third category – the concentration of high technologies. Here it occupies second place. It also occupies second place in the level of education. It likewise does well on the last factor – it’s patent activity is at 8th place.

Its worst positions are in the spheres of industrial productivity, where it occupies 38th place, and in labor productivity, where it occupies 41st place.

In the category of R&D intensity, Russia occupies 29th place, whereas in terms of the number of researchers, it is at 24th place. Recently Russia entered the list of countries where it is easiest to do business. Although it’s successes in that rating aren’t nearly as evident, as it occupies 56th place. In the previous such rating, Russia took 48th place.

However, as regards the question of how difficult it is to do business in Russia, there is one curious commentary to be made. Not all businessmen believe that doing business in Russia is all that hard. At the World Economic Forum in Davos, the CEO of Cisco John Chambers remarked that he likes Russia as a place to do business. Cisco specializes in the sphere of networking technologies, that is innovation, and appears in the Forbes Top 100 list of the world’s biggest companies.

“In Russia it is now sometimes easier for me to do business than in the US,” he told CNN, adding that this might sound shocking. Separately, he noted that he was satisfied with the partnership with the Russian government to create a global technology hub out of Skolkovo. The most convenient country for business he named Canada.

The original publication: Сколково в рейтинге (Дмитрий Муравьев, Взгляд). 4 February, 2013.

Anatoly Karlin is a transhumanist interested in psychometrics, life extension, UBI, crypto/network states, X risks, and ushering in the Biosingularity.


Inventor of Idiot’s Limbo, the Katechon Hypothesis, and Elite Human Capital.


Apart from writing booksreviewstravel writing, and sundry blogging, I Tweet at @powerfultakes and run a Substack newsletter.