Nigeria has moved down by five places to 119 out of 127 economies ranked in the 2017 Global Innovation Index from the 114th position it attained in 2016.
The index measures innovation performance in countries globally A report on the ranking stated that Nigeria performed poorly in the areas of political stability and safety, rule of law, ease of paying taxes, and innovation linkages.
The country, however, ranked well in areas such as ease of protecting minority investors, ICT intensity of local competition, domestic market scale, presence of firms offering formal training, intellectual properties payments, ICT services import and ease of getting credit.
On a scale of zero to 100, presence of ICT infrastructure was 32.3; knowledge and technology output, 9.9; creative output, 19.9; and business sophistication, 21.7.
Globally, Switzerland retained its top position for the seventh consecutive year, with political stability and safety, ICT use, presence of global research and development firms, high market capitalisation, business sophistication and university/industrial research collaboration identified as some of its strengths.
The report noted that rich countries occupied most of the top 25 spots, while middle-income countries grew more distant to the top 25, with the exception of China that moved up by three spots to become the 22nd most innovative economy in the world.
Nigeria was missing among the innovation achievers, but six countries, which had consistently been named in this category in the past five years, emerged from the sub-Saharan Africa, namely: Kenya, Rwanda, Senegal, Uganda, Mozambique and Malawi.
The General Innovation Index (GII) emphasised the role of technology in improving agricultural systems and the scaling up of local innovations in farming.
It said, “The local initiatives are also important. Grassroots innovations are happening in farming that can often be scaled up.
“Robust links between public research institutions, firms, and the grassroots level are key. Efforts to enhance the efficiency of the food and agriculture innovation system should focus on reducing lags between research and development efforts, and the widespread adoption of agricultural innovations.”