Innovative growth

Readers' views No 257, October 2006
OECD Observer

Letter to the editor: One way OECD countries and others benefit from globalisation is by helping their businesses stay profitable through cost-effective outsourcing, mainly to China and India, and including some knowledge-based activities. In time, these will account for most outsourced work, but as emerging exporters cater to their own domestic markets, the playing field will level out somewhat. Innovation will be important for everyone to stay ahead.

But is creativity monitored by Gross Domestic Product? An appropriate measure would be based on Gross Domestic Innovation, whose correlation with GDP would reveal important trends. Aggregate GDI numbers could be gathered from patents, publications, copyrights and other sources, industry and academia in both scientific and non-scientific disciplines. Even trade secrets could become a source. A GDP quotient would generate a monetary value in terms of products and services generated per unit of innovation. In time, GDI would reflect a mix of employment, productivity and GDP and could be used to segregate sectors by innovation and research. GDI would lend credence to innovation in society at large.

Balkrishna Rao
School of Industrial Engineering, Purdue University
West Lafayette, IN, USA
balkrish@ecn.purdue.edu


©OECD Observer No 257, October 2006




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