Updated: Norway lags behind on innovation / News / The Foreigner

The Foreigner Updated: Norway lags behind on innovation. Oil-rich Norway is falling behind its European counterparts on Research and Development spending and innovation. Norway is regarded as a ‘moderate innovator’ with a below average performance, coming 17th in the latest European Commission Innovation Union Scoreboard (IUS). Growth performance is just 1.3 percent, and the report states there are “relative weaknesses in firm investments, intellectual assets, innovators, and output.” Daniel Ras-Vidal, the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprises’ (NHO) economic policy advisor, says the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), regards this as a mystery.

norwegianinnovation, researchanddevelopmentspending, eupoll, confederationofnorwegianenterprise, nho, danielraas-vidal



The Foreigner Logo

The Foreigner is an online publication for English speakers living or who have an interest in Norway. Whether it’s a glimpse of news or entertainment you’re after, there’s no need to leave your linguistic armchair. You don’t need to cry over the demise of the English pages of Aftenposten.no, The Foreigner is here!

Norske nyheter på engelsk fra Norge. The Foreigner er en engelskspråklig internett avis for de som bor eller som er interessert i Norge.

Google+ Google+ Twitter Facebook RSS RSS



News Article

LATEST:

Updated: Norway lags behind on innovation

Published on Tuesday, 8th March, 2011 at 09:12 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 8th March 2011 at 18:23.

Oil-rich Norway is falling behind its European counterparts on Research and Development spending and innovation.



A biased conundrum?

Norway is regarded as a ‘moderate innovator’ with a below average performance, coming 17th in the latest European Commission Innovation Union Scoreboard (IUS). Growth performance is just 1.3 percent, and the report states there are “relative weaknesses in firm investments, intellectual assets, innovators, and output.”

Daniel Ras-Vidal, the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprises’ (NHO) economic policy advisor, says the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), regards this as a mystery.

“’The Norwegian puzzle’, as the OECD calls it, is that Norway has strong productivity growth, wealth creation and GDP/capita, while measured innovation activity and investments in Research & Development (R & D) is much lower than in competing countries,” he tells The Foreigner.

According to Mr Raas-Vidal, many have accused the IUS indicators of being biased, because, “Norway, with its resource-based industrial structure, looks less innovative than it in reality is, because we are especially innovative in oil & gas, fish farming, metallurgical industries and other resource-based industries.”

However, he believes there are many areas that need improving.

“On a cross-sectoral level, it seems clear that the overall level of competence should be improved in the years to come. Norway has a very high drop-out rate from secondary school and a rather strong growth in people receiving welfare benefits from the state, rather than engaging in work life.”

Behind

Nordic neighbours Sweden, Denmark, and Finland are rated amongst the top five ‘innovation leaders’, together with leader Switzerland, and 5th place Germany.

This is because “they all seem to be better than Norway at building global brands and commercializing new innovations. Norway seems to have an abundance of creative inventor-type people, but a weak tradition for commercializing consumer-oriented products,” explains Mr Raas-Vidal, arguing Norway should strive to join them.

“Norway is a high-cost country, and export-oriented Norwegian companies are competing on a global market. Thus, we have to build in knowledge and innovation into all our products and services, if we are to maintain high wage levels and a modern and extensive welfare state. This is even more urgent in Norway, because we know that our industrial structure will be rather different 10-20 years from now, given the gradual decline of the oil & gas activities on the Norwegian continental shelf, and the supposed increased importance of knowledge-based industries and services.”

Shake-up

The NHO believes Norway must increase its R & D investments long-term towards a 3%/GDP goal.

“Norway has a very large public sector, so it is imperative to develop more innovative and cost-efficient public services in the years to come. One could also argue that certain sectors that are shielded from competition, such as parts of the agricultural sector, will need to become more innovative in order to compete in a world where trade barriers gradually are decreasing. Also, the Norwegian tourism industry needs to develop better ways to exploit the potential for selling Norway’s spectacular nature to well off tourists globally,” Mr Raas-Vidal says.



Published on Tuesday, 8th March, 2011 at 09:12 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 8th March 2011 at 18:23.

This post has the following tags: norwegianinnovation, researchanddevelopmentspending, eupoll, confederationofnorwegianenterprise, nho, danielraas-vidal.





  
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!