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Archived updates for Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Europe Publishes R&D Intensity Figures

The European Commission published its "Key Figures 2005 on science, technology and innovation" on July 19, 2005, revealing stagnation in research and development (R&D) investment in the EU and U.S.

In a presentation entitled "Wake-Up Call for Knowledge Europe," EU Science and Research Commissioner Janez Potocnik reportedly described the numbers as 'particularly worrying'. The figures show that EU R&D intensity, growth of R&D investment as a % of GDP, is close to stagnation. China's R&D intensity, on the other hand, has been growing at around 10 per cent annually since 1997. According to Potocnik, "If current trends for both China and the EU-25 hold on in the coming years, China will have caught up with the EU by 2010 in terms of the share of GDP allocated to R&D."

Europe devotes a much lower share of its wealth to R&D than the US and Japan (1.93% of GDP in the EU in 2003, as compared to 2.59% in the US and 3.15% in Japan). While China has lower R&D intensity (1.31% of GDP in 2003) it grew at about 10% per year between 1997 and 2002. If these trends in the EU and China continue, China will be spending the same amount of GDP on research as the EU in 2010 – about 2.2%.
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