India improves its GII innovation rank 15 positions in 2016


India has improved its innovation ranking in GII to reach 66th position from its last year’s rank of 81st, this improvement in the rank for India comes after 5 years of continuous drop in its ranking. Switzerland, Sweden, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Finland and Singapore lead the 2016 rankings in the Global Innovation Index, released jointly by Cornell University, INSEAD, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) AT Kearney and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

Speaking at the launch function jointly organized by NITI Aayog, DIPP and CII in the capital today, Ms Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry informed that “A team to be formed to look into results of the Global Innovation Index to understand the challenges related to India and advise the Govt on Next step”.

Along with its innovation performance India’s innovation ranking is driven by methodological considerations, such as the addition of new indicators. Relative to GDP, India performs well above the line of the level of development. Among its income group (lower-middle income) it ranks 6th and in its region (Central and Southern Asia) it ranks 1st.

India has shown a downward trajectory during the period of 2013-2015 in its ranking for inputs and outputs. This year, however, the rank in both inputs and outputs has increased significantly, reaching its best performance for the inputs over the 4 year period. The relative downturn of India’s Innovation Efficiency Ratio (63rd) happened due to significant increase in Innovation inputs (which remained weak in previous years) with respect to its output (efficiency is the ratio between innovation output and innovation input). India ranks 3rd and 1st in its region (Central and Southern Asia) in the Innovation Input and Output Sub-Indices, respectively.

India, 66th, is the top-ranked economy in Central and Southern Asia, showing particular strengths in tertiary education and R&D, including global R&D intensive firms, the quality of its universities and scientific publications, its market sophistication and ICT service exports where it ranks first in the world. India also over-performs in innovation relative to its GDP. It ranks second on innovation quality amongst middle-income economies, overtaking Brazil. Relative weaknesses exist in the indicators for business environment, education expenditures, new business creations and the creative goods and services production.

“The commitment of India to innovation and improved innovation metrics is strong and growing, helping to improve the innovation environment.  This trend will help gradually lift India closer to other top-ranked innovation economies”, says Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

Innovation requires continuous investment. Before the 2009 crisis, research and development (R&D) expenditure grew at an annual pace of approximately 7%. GII 2016 data indicate that global R&D grew by only 4% in 2014. This was a result of slower growth in emerging economies and tighter R&D budgets in high-income economies – this remains a source of concern.

“Investing in innovation is critical to raising long-term economic growth,” said WIPO Director General Francis Gurry, “I would like to congratulate the Government of India on how it has prioritized innovation in its development strategy. In the GII, India performs better than other countries at a similar level of economic development. India also shows outstanding strengths in innovation factors such as the number of graduates in science and engineering, the quality of its scientific publications and the quality of its universities”.

Top Rankings

1 Switzerland (No. 1 in 2015)
2 Sweden (3)
3 United Kingdom (2)
4 United States of America (5)
5 Finland (6)
6 Singapore (7)
7 Ireland (8)
8 Denmark (10)
9 Netherlands (4)
10 Germany (12)
66 India (81)

Among the GII 2016 leaders, four economies — Japan, the U.S., the UK, and Germany— stand out in “innovation quality,” a top-level indicator that looks at the caliber of universities, number of scientific publications and international patent filings. China moves to 17th place in innovation quality, making it the leader among middle-income economies for this indicator, followed by India which has overtaken Brazil.

Soumitra Dutta, Dean, Cornell College of Business, and co-editor of the report, points out that “Investing in improving innovation quality is essential for closing the innovation divide. While institutions create an essential supportive framework for doing so, economies need to focus on reforming education and growing their research capabilities to compete successfully in a rapidly changing globalized world.”

GII 2016 Theme: “Winning with Global Innovation”

The GII theme this year is “Winning with Global Innovation.” The report explores the rising share of innovation carried out via globalized innovation networks, finding that gains from global innovation can be shared more widely as cross-border flows of knowledge and talent are on the rise. The report also concludes that there is ample scope to expand global corporate and public R&D cooperation to foster future economic growth.

Bruno Lanvin, INSEAD Executive Director for Global Indices, and co-author of the report, underlines that “Some may see globalization as a trend in search of its ‘second breath’. Yet, the relative contraction of international trade and investment flows does give even more strategic importance to the two sides of global innovation: on one hand, more emerging countries are becoming successful innovators, and on the other hand, an increasing share of innovation benefits stem from cross-border co-operation.”

At the national level, the report says that innovation policies should more explicitly favor international collaboration and the diffusion of knowledge across borders. New international governance structures should also aim to increase technology diffusion to and among developing countries.

“Digital has become a primary driver of corporate globalization and advancement. For traditional organizations, the challenge is finding ways to be lean and agile, yet build on the realities of their existing resources and established practices,” says Johan Aurik, Managing Partner and Chairman of the Board of GII Knowledge Partner A.T. Kearney.  “Realizing success in today’s new landscape requires forward thinking strategies that embrace digital to support R&D as well as the company’s people, processes and systems,” he adds.

Regional Innovation Leaders

Region/ Rank Name GII 2016 Rank
Northern America
1                     United States of America 4
2                     Canada 15
Sub-Saharan Africa
1                      Mauritius 53
2                      South Africa 54
3                      Kenya 80
Latin America and the Caribbean
1                      Chile 44
2                      Costa Rica 45
3                      Mexico 61
Central and Southern Asia
1                      India 66
2                      Kazakhstan 75
3                      Islamic Republic of Iran 78
Northern Africa and Western Asia
1                      Israel 21
2                     Cyprus 31
3                     United Arab Emirates 41
South East Asia, East Asia, and Oceania
1                      Singapore 6
2                      Republic of Korea 11
3                      Hong Kong (China) 14
1                      Switzerland 1
2                      Sweden 2
3                      United Kingdom 3

About the Global Innovation Index

The Global Innovation Index 2016 (GII), in its 9th edition this year, is co-published by Cornell University, INSEAD, and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO, a specialized agency of the United Nations).

Published annually since 2007, the GII is now a leading benchmarking tool for business executives, policy makers and others seeking insight into the state of innovation around the world. Policymakers, business leaders and other stakeholders use the GII to evaluate progress on a continual basis.  This year’s study benefits from the experience of its Knowledge Partners, A.T. Kearney and IMP³rove – European Innovation Management Academy, the Confederation of Indian Industry and du, as well as of an Advisory Board of international experts.

The core of the GII Report consists of a ranking of world economies’ innovation capabilities and results. Recognizing the key role of innovation as a driver of economic growth and prosperity, and the need for a broad horizontal vision of innovation applicable to developed and emerging economies, the GII includes indicators that go beyond the traditional measures of innovation such as the level of research and development.

To support the global innovation debate, to guide polices and to highlight good practices, metrics are required to assess innovation and related policy performance. The GII creates an environment in which innovation factors are under continual evaluation, including the following features:

 •      128 country profiles, including data, ranks and strengths and weaknesses on 82 indicators

 •          82 data tables for indicators from over 30 international public and private sources, of which 58 are hard data, 19 composite indicators, and 5 survey questions

 •          A transparent and replicable computation methodology including 90% confidence interval for each index ranking (GII, output and input sub-indices) and an

              Analysis of factors affecting year-on-year changes in rankings

The GII 2016 is calculated as the average of two sub-indices. The Innovation Input Sub-Index gauges elements of the national economy which embody innovative activities grouped in five pillars: (1) Institutions, (2) Human capital and research, (3) Infrastructure, (4) Market sophistication, and (5) Business sophistication. The Innovation Output Sub-Index captures actual evidence of innovation results, divided in two pillars: (6) Knowledge and technology outputs and (7) Creative outputs.

The index is submitted to an independent statistical audit by the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission. To download the full report visit:

About Cornell University: Cornell is a privately endowed research university and a partner of the State University of New York. As the federal land-grant institution in New York State, we have a responsibility to make contributions in all fields of knowledge in a manner that prioritizes public engagement to help improve the quality of life in our state, the nation, the world. The Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University is a leader in innovative business education for the connected world. Consistently ranked as one of the top business schools in the world, Johnson offers six MBA programs, spanning the U.S., Canada, Latin America, Mexico, and China.

About INSEAD, The Business School for the World

As one of the world’s leading and largest graduate business schools, INSEAD offers participants a truly global educational experience. With campuses in Europe (France), Asia (Singapore) and Middle East (Abu Dhabi), INSEAD’s business education and research spans three continents. Our 148 renowned faculty members from 40 countries inspire more than 1,300 students in our degree and PhD programmes. In addition, more than 9,500 executives participate in INSEAD’s executive education programmes each year.

In 2016, all three of INSEAD’s MBA programmes are ranked #1 by the Financial Times in their categories: MBA, Executive MBA and Single School Executive MBA.  More information about INSEAD can be found at 

About WIPO

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is the global forum for intellectual property policy, services, information and cooperation. A specialized agency of the United Nations, WIPO assists its 188 member states in developing a balanced international IP legal framework to meet society’s evolving needs. It provides business services for obtaining IP rights in multiple countries and resolving disputes. It delivers capacity-building programs to help developing countries benefit from using IP. And it provides free access to unique knowledge banks of IP information.

Knowledge Partners The Confederation of Indian Industry, du and A.T. Kearney and IMP³rove – European Innovation Management Academy collaborate as Knowledge Partners in 2016.Knowledge Partners believe in the role of innovation in increasing the competitiveness of nations, enabling economic growth, driving societal changes and building the foundation of a country’s future.They are committed to producing a valuable and non-partisan resource. Knowledge Partners support the elaboration of the GII; contribute analytical chapters or case studies to the GII Report; and participate in the discussion and dissemination of the GII results.

About CII

The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) works to create and sustain an environment conducive to the growth of industry in India, partnering industry and government alike through advisory and consultative processes. CII is a non-government, not-for-profit, industry-led and industry-managed organization, playing a proactive role in India´s development process. Founded in 1895, India’s premier business association has over 7900 members, from the private as well as public sectors, including SMEs and MNCs, and an indirect membership of over 200,000 enterprises from around 240 national and regional sectoral industry bodies.

About du

As the fastest growing telecommunications provider in the Middle East and North Africa region, du serves more than 7.5 million individual customers and over 80,000 businesses throughout the UAE. By being a key player in the UAE’s economy, we have proudly partnered with the government to further drive the innovation agenda, in line with the UAE’s Vision 2021. We started operating in 2007, offering mobile and fixed telephony, broadband connectivity and IPTV services; today, we also provide carrier services for businesses and satellite up/downlink services for TV broadcasters.

About A.T. Kearney

A.T. Kearney is a leading global management consulting firm with offices in more than 40 countries. Since 1926, we have been trusted advisors to the world’s foremost organizations. A.T. Kearney is a partner-owned firm, committed to helping clients achieve immediate impact and growing advantage on their most mission-critical issues. For more information, visit

About IMP³rove – European Innovation Management Academy

The IMP³rove – European Innovation Management Academy offers innovation management benchmarking, advisory services, and training. With a holistic approach to innovation management and a global network, IMP³rove Academy sets the standard for innovation management assessment and related support services. IMP³rove Academy emerged from the European Commission’s flagship program “IMP³rove”. For more information, visit wishes the very best.

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