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Vietnam Surges in Global Innovation Index 2023 Rankings

According to the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), Vietnam has climbed two spots from last year to secure the 46th position out of 132 economies in the 2sama

023 Global Innovation Index (GII) rankings.

Vietnam excels in innovation, particularly in the areas of high-tech exports, labour productivity growth, and high-tech imports. In the lower middle-income group comprising 37 economies, Vietnam secures the second position, only behind India. Within the ASEAN region, Vietnam ranks fourth, with Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand leading the way.

Image credit: Nhan Dan

Innovation inputs for Vietnam have improved this year, with the country now occupying the 57th position, marking a two-place increase from the previous year. Furthermore, Vietnam has advanced by one position in innovation outputs, now ranking at number 40. It ranked 33rd in the unicorn valuation, and 66th in research and development expenditure.

Despite some improvements, certain indicators still lag. For instance, while the ecological sustainability index group has advanced by three positions compared to the previous year, its ranking remains considerably low, sitting at 110th place.

WIPO reports that Vietnam is among the seven middle-income countries that have made significant advancements in innovation over the past decade. These countries, which include China, Turkey, India, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Iran, have demonstrated notable progress in the field of innovation. Vietnam stands out as one of the three countries exceeding expectations for its level of development, alongside India and Moldova.

The GII is a comprehensive ranking system that assesses the innovation capabilities and outcomes of world economies. It evaluates these economies based on institutions, human capital and research, infrastructure, credit, investment, linkages, and the generation, assimilation, and dissemination of knowledge, as well as creative outputs.

Vietnam has consistently improved its rankings since 2017, progressing from the 59th position in 2016 to its current 46th position in 2023. The top-ranked countries for innovation in 2023 are Switzerland, Sweden, and the United States.

Vietnam is actively promoting innovation through a multi-faceted approach aimed at fostering a culture of creativity and technological advancement. The government has been investing in research and development initiatives, education, and infrastructure to create an enabling environment for innovation to thrive.

At a recent meeting with members of the Vietnam Innovation Network (NIC), Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh emphasised that the Vietnamese Party and State consistently provide support and create favourable conditions for innovation endeavours. They are also dedicated to refining relevant institutions, mechanisms, and policies. It was proposed that the network’s innovation activities should centre around digital transformation, green transition, circular economy, sharing economy and infrastructure (including hard, soft, and digital infrastructure), and education and training.

The country recently hosted the 2023 Vietnam Innovation Challenge. It was held by the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and organised by the National Innovation Centre (NIC) and a leading technology corporation.

The winning solutions were recognised for their significant potential to bolster digital transformation and the innovation capacity of businesses, ultimately aiding them on their journey toward prosperity and sustainable development. The top four included a digital transformation platform for SMEs, a robotic process automation (RPA) solution, a unified business management platform, and an energy-saving solution.

The Vietnam Innovation Challenge, held annually, is designed to bring the InnovateVN initiative by the MPI to fruition. It invites submissions from both domestic and international organisations and individuals, encouraging them to propose innovative solutions to address critical national challenges.


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