India Rises in Global Innovation Rankings

India continued to rise in the Global Innovation Index rankings for the second year in succession, after four consecutive years of decline. In this year's rankings, India improved its position from 66 to 60. Last year, it had improved from 81 to 66. Its improvement is part of a trend both in the middle income countries and Asian countries, many of which have improved their innovation capacities in recent years.

The GII was first developed 10 years ago by the business school INSEAD in Paris as a way of benchmarking countries and their innovative capacities. It is now jointly developed and executed by Insead, Cornell University and the World Intellectual Property Organisation. It includes 127 countries and the rankings are topped by developed countries. Switzerland is the most innovative country for the seventh year in succession. The US is in fourth place and China moved up from 25 to 22.

India has continued its roller coaster ride over the last 10 years. In 2007, when the GII was first developed, India was at 41. It is currently at rank 60, but it doesn't mean that India's position is worse than that it in 2007. This is because the GII parameters have changed over the years, as its originators have continued to tweak and improve the methodology. However, it clear that India and some other Asian countries are quickly improving.

The top 10 innovative nations in GII have been remarkably unchanged over the years, but there have been changes in the middle. Apart from India, China and Vietnam are the other major countries that are improving rapidly. Vietnam has improved its ranking from 59 last year to 47. In 2012, Vietnam was at 76.

The GII has been taken seriously by several governments around the world, including India, as a way of benchmarking national competitiveness. India has improved its data capture system in recent times, and this change has had an impact on its ranking improvements. However, India has a large informal sector whose innovations go unrepresented in global rankings.

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