Monday, August 06, 2007

Measuring Innovation by patents

Browsing one of my favourite blogs I stumbled upon an interesting report: "Top 15 most innovative Countries".

What makes me think is the method used here: they measure the innovation rate of a country by counting the number of patents filed in a period, divided by the population .

First thought (and first comment on mentalfloss) is on average bias: 1 billion Indians have more urgent problems than filing patents or taking a degree in computer science, they are trying to survive the famine!

Second thought is more politic/polemic: are we sure that a patent is worth an innovation point? Is innovation just a score on a registry? Do you weigh the toilet seat deodorizer apparatus as worth as something that has never been filed but we use everyday?

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