The Netherlands breaks into the top 10

Bloomberg’s 2021 Innovation Index placed the Netherlands ninth, up four places on the previous year and outranking the US and UK. South Korea, Singapore and Switzerland took the top three positions.

Examining 111 countries, Bloomberg assessed innovation based on seven metrics, such as research and development spending, manufacturing capability, concentration of high-tech public companies and patent activity.

According to Bloomberg, the rankings "reflect a world where the fight against Covid-19 has brought innovation to the fore – from government efforts to contain the pandemic, to the digital infrastructure that’s allowed economies to work through it, and the race to develop vaccines that can end it".

A leader in innovation

The Amsterdam Area plays a huge part in the Netherlands' reputation as a leader in innovation, thanks to its dense ecosystem of universities and research institutions, thriving tech and startup scene, and close collaboration of public and private organisations.

Recently, the coronavirus pandemic has driven firms in the city region to collaborate and innovate to meet society’s changing needs. 

In the life sciences and health sector, Happitech’s heart monitoring technology was incorporated into an app created by Amsterdam’s OLVG hospital and developers Luscii. Amsterdam’s Pacmed has also been applying its machine learning models to help medical professionals make optimal use of ICU beds around the Netherlands, preventing overcrowding while improving the treatment of critically ill patients. The startup is also involved in a "world first" data-sharing project with Dutch ICUs.

Dutch companies are also leading the way in sustainable building. Amsterdam firm Space & Matter has gained global recognition for its eco-friendly floating neighbourhoods and workspaces, recently taking its expertise to the waters of Red Hook, Brooklyn. EDGE, which develops high-tech buildings with a sustainable footprint, last month received the first platinum award from Smart Building Certification for EDGE Olympic Amsterdam, which is now in the running to officially be named "Smartest Building in the World".

Read more business news from around Amsterdam.