Bizkaia Talent


The Basque Country is an innovation hub according to the European Commission

The Basque Country is an international innovation hub and absolute leader in the whole of Spain in its category as a strong innovator in Europe. This is what the European Commission states in the Regional Innovation Scoreboard, RIS, which has just been published and which assesses innovation performance in 214 regions of 22 member states and Norway. In addition, Estonia, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxemburg and Malta are included at country level.

In spite of the fact that the most innovative regions of Europe are located in the most innovative countries, that is, those in the leading group, in moderate innovator countries there are 4 regional innovative hubs which stand out from the rest. In this group are the Basque Country, Piedmont and Friuli-Venezia Giulia in Italy or Bratislava in Slovakia.

In the European Scoreboard, regions are classified into four categories according to their different performance on innovation matters: innovation leaders (36 regions), strong innovators (65 regions, among them the Basque Country), moderate innovators (83 regions) and modest innovators (30 regions).



The Regional Innovation Scoreboard points out that the most innovative regions are usually located in the most innovative countries. Regional performance groups largely match the corresponding country performance groups in the European Innovation Scoreboard 2016.

Innovation excellence is concentrated in relatively few areas in Europe. All 36 EU regional Innovation Leaders are located in seven EU Member States: Denmark, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Finland, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

For most regions, innovation has improved over time, nevertheless, an analysis over a nine-year period (until 2016) shows that performance group membership has been stable for most regions (70 %), while several changes to both lower and higher performance groups can be observed for other regions.

Specialisation in Key Enabling Technologies is positively linked to regional innovation performance. Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) are a group of six technologies that provide the basis for innovation in a range of products across all industrial sectors. Specialisation in KETs is positively linked to regional innovation performance, in particular in Advanced materials, Industrial biotechnology, Photonics, and Advanced manufacturing technologies.


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