US falls out of top 10 countries in innovation ranking: 4 insights

The U.S. dropped to No. 11 in the 2018 Bloomberg Innovation Index rankings for the first time in the six years the data has been compiled, Bloomberg reports.

The 2018 report ranked over 200 global economies and scored each economy's innovation on a 0-100 scale based on seven equally weighted categories, which included research and development spending and concentration of high-tech public companies. The report eliminated countries that did not report data for at least six of the seven categories, leaving the list at 80.

Here are four insights from the report.

1. South Korea and Sweden had the No. 1 and No. 2 rankings this year, followed by Singapore, Germany, Switzerland, Japan, Finland, Denmark, France and Israel, ranked at No. 3 through No. 10, respectively.

2. This year is South Korea's fifth consecutive year in the top spot.

3. The U.S. dropped from No. 9 to No. 11 this year primarily because it fell eight spots in the post-secondary, or tertiary, education-efficiency category. The category includes the share of new science and engineering graduates in the labor force. The nation's value-added manufacturing also declined and an increase in the productivity score was not enough to raise its ranking.

4. "I see no evidence to suggest that this trend will not continue," Robert D. Atkinson, president of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation in Washington, D.C., said of America's lower ranking. "Other nations have responded with smart, well-funded innovation policies like better R&D tax incentives, more government funding for research, more funding for technology commercialization initiatives."

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