ARLINGTON, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A new global ranking from the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) identifies the Netherlands as one of 13 countries earning the designation of 2018 Innovation Champion. CTA’s inaugural International Innovation Scorecard identifies critical areas of national policy that spur innovation and reveals the areas in which countries may be stunting their own futures and economic growth.
“The trend lines are clear – innovation is encouraged where governments, such as the Netherlands, are hospitable to new ideas, people enjoy great freedom and clean environments, and innovators are embraced,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, CTA. “Countries’ futures are tied to innovation, because it will bolster economic growth and provide future generations with the jobs they want. Graduates entering the workforce today don’t necessarily want to stay in the factory jobs of previous generations – they want to use their creativity and curiosity to build brighter futures worldwide.”
CTA, the largest U.S. tech trade association, conducted a comparative analysis of 38 countries and the European Union. In addition to the Netherlands, CTA’s Scorecard named Australia, Austria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, New Zealand, Portugal, Singapore, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States as global Innovation Champions.
The Netherlands made a strong showing in a number of categories. The report finds the country’s startup sector has continued to expand, pushing the Netherlands’ annual new business entry rate to 5.34 per 1,000 people and helping the country produce six “unicorn” companies. The Netherlands also allows testing of self-driving vehicles and opened a new testing facility for self-driving cars as part of a collaboration with the Delft University of Technology. The country also offers average broadband speeds that far exceed those of most other countries, including average fixed internet speeds of 17.4 mbps.
Although the Netherlands performed well in the Scorecard, it could benefit from actions taken to be more hospitable to drones, including eliminating barriers to recreational drone use, such as expensive certificate requirements. Current policies support only commercial drone operations. In a joint welcome letter to the International Innovation Scorecard, Ambassador of the Netherlands in the United States Henne Schuwer and Consul General of the Netherlands in San Francisco Gerbert Kunst “thank CTA for this recognition, but also for its support of Dutch startups. Startups are the engine of innovation, and this year 53 Dutch startups presented themselves to the world at CES 2018. This experience provides an enormous boost to their business by bringing them in contact with the established tech world, major investors and international corporations. This way, these startups find the maximum opportunity for growth, solve society’s challenges and help people worldwide. That’s why CTA has given them the best launching platform imaginable.”
The Scorecard uses several objective criteria including whether governments welcome disruptive business models and technologies such as the sharing economy and self-driving vehicles; how friendly their tax systems are; how well they protect the environment; and issues of perennial importance such as broadband speed and cost. The Scorecard also gauges countries on diversity; the ratio of female-to-male employees in the workplace in key age demographics; immigrants as a share of the national population; and freedom of thought and expression.
Other key international findings, ranked by grade, include:
- The countries that have, on average, the fastest and most affordable internet connections are the Austria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, the Netherlands, South Korea, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
- The countries with the highest level of entrepreneurial activity are Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, Sweden and United Kingdom.
- The countries leading the way in self-driving vehicle policy are Australia, Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States.
CTA considered a range of indicators to determine the final roster of countries. The Scorecard evaluates countries that fit two guidelines: the government must be able to influence public policy; and publicly available, verifiable and independent third-party data must exist and can be compared with different nations. In future editions, CTA will expand the scope of the Scorecard and include more countries.
To read more about the Scorecard, visit www.internationalscorecard.com.