Sri Lanka has made two-position improvement in the 2018 innovation rankings as the country made some limited progress in general infrastructure, ecological sustainability and knowledge and technology outputs, supporting such innovation.
The Global Innovation Index (GII), a collaboration between Cornell University, INSEAD and the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), placed Sri Lanka at the 88th position, out of 126 countries in its 2018 edition, up from 90th place in 2017.
The slow progress in the index rankings reflects Sri Lanka’s weak political and regulatory environment, poor spend and performance in human capital and research and difficultly in accessing the credit in funding innovations – the same criteria which fared poorly even in 2017.
Sri Lanka ranks better in business sophistication, particularly the ICT services imports as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP) (with a ranking of 20) and joint venture or strategic alliance deals as a percentage of PPP $ GDP as a means of facilitating innovation linkages (with a ranking of 25). Sri Lanka equally ranks better at 23 in printing and other media as a percentage of manufacturing and the country has the best ranking of 13 in ecological sustainability, where the GDP per unit of energy use has the best raking of four. Meanwhile, India bagged the top spot in the GII rankings in South Asia at the 57th place, moving up from the 60th last year and the fifth among the lower-middle-income economies. Among all regions and economies, the Scandinavian countries – Switzerland, Netherlands and Sweden, occupied the first three places, while the United Kingdom, Singapore and the United States coming in at the fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively.
The 10th edition of the report released by the GII, yesterday, themed ‘Energizing the World with Innovation’, mainly strives to find solutions to the rapidly growing energy demand in the world through technological and non-technological innovations.
The GII said the energy demand is reaching unprecedented levels as a result of a growing world population, rapid urbanization and industrialization.
But they are of the belief that the innovations are required both on the production side of energy equation, such as alternative sources, smart grids and new advanced energy storage technologies and on the consumption side, such as smart cities, homes and buildings, energy-efficient industries and transport and future mobility.