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Research & Development Trends


     This is my first blog on SCN. I have chosen various countries’ expenditure patterns on Research & Development as my dataset from ‘United States Census Bureau’. The dataset contains country-wise statistics on   ‘Total R & D expenditure as a % of GDPR & D expenditure shared by  government,   R & D expenditure shared by Industry, Per capita expenditure on R & D and Expenditure on R & D education’.

Using SAP Lumira, I’ve analysed the data-set in following aspects:

  1. Countries with highest R & D expenditures
  2. Industry’s contribution towards R & D
  3. Government’s contribution towards R & D
  4. Per capita expenditure on R & D and
  5. Expenditure  on R & D education

Let us begin our analysis,

1.  Countries with highest R & D expenditures


Here, we can see the top 5 countries in terms of maximum R & D expenditure (as a % of GDP) are Sweden, South Korea, Finland, Japan and Switzerland with 3.60, 3.47, 3.47, 3.44 and 2.90 % of GDP expenditures respectively.

2.  Industry’s contribution towards R & D



Here, we get an interesting picture, although Sweden is in top when it comes to R & D spending as an whole, but when it comes to the industry share in R & D spending, Luxembourg is on top with 79.72 % contributed by industry followed by Japan with 77.71%, South Korea with 73.65%, China with 70.37% and Switzerland with 69.73%.

3. Government’s contribution towards R & D


Yet here, we get to explore another hidden fact with India standing on top with highest(80.81%) government contribution towards R & D followed by Russia with 62.62%, Poland with 58.61%, Brazil with 57.88% and Slovakia with 53.92%.

4. Per capita expenditure on R & D


Yet another interesting analysis here. Again it’s the turn of Sweden standing high with highest per capita expenditure on R & D (1,320$ in 2011) followed by Luxembourg (1,300$), United States (1,221$), Finland (1,206$) and Japan (1,157$).

5.  Expenditure on R & D education


Another hidden fact now. Sweden again stands first with highest expenditure (0.77 % of GDP) on R & D education followed by 2 new entries in our analysis so far i.e., Denmark (0.70% of GDP), Iceland (0.69 % of GDP) and as usual Switzerland (0.66 % of GDP)  and Finland (0.65% of GDP).

This analysis helps us to deduce the mindset of people and the cultural background of different countries. For example, in countries like Russia, Brazil and India (where I belong) people like to have a secured profession and they give much importance to family and relationships. They usually do not prefer taking new initiatives and innovations themselves unless sponsored, for the risk of failure because most of the people here fall in middle class. Usually, they risk less to go in an unconventional path as far as their career is concerned. On the other hand, in countries like Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, USA etc people love to take initiatives, challenges and they tend to do something innovative. Moreover, as most of the people here are above middle class, sustenance is not a concern. That is one of the reasons why we find that these are the countries where most of the innovations come from and many Fortune 500 companies have their roots here. But, in countries like India, majority of the large enterprises are either state run or foreign collaborated and most of the research in these countries pertain to either space or defense which are again government sponsored. This is one of the main reasons why we see maximum role of government in research of these countries contrary to the techie countries. However, trends are rapidly changing. Even in countries like India which is considered to be a land of culture, people are breaking their age old conventions and taking new initiatives, and therefore industry’s contribution towards research is significantly improving on par with the governments’.

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  • Great Analysis and really thought Provoking.

    From the beginning of this Blog , my eyes were searching for Our country name INDIA ,

    people like to have a secured profession and they give much importance to family and relationships

    Later got the reason for not finding it at the beginning of  discussion.

    I myself got into SAP unwillingly and accidentally , was interested in .net sharepoint / php.

    But must say our country has been homeland of  many  great Innovative and "Against the Gradient" thoughts and Ideas.

    Out of which the Greatest is Number 0 ( 50% of the modern day Machine Language 😉 ) from Aryabhata

    • Thank you Sijin Chandran

      for adding something I missed in my analysis. I am an Indian and I too feel proud to glorify India. There are exceptions to my analysis. I was describing about the overall fabric of Indian culture and there are exceptions. However, I am speaking of modern India. Ancient India was richest in the World. It was called 'The Golden Bird'. India continuously suffered foreign invasions for its riches. In those days Indians were very prosperous and secured. They didn't have to worry about their sustenance. Rather, everybody had an assured employment, they were in fact in surplus. During the times of 'Sri Krishna Devaraya' of 'Vijayanagara empire' diamonds were sold in heaps in the open markets like vegetables. India's situation has become pathetic only after repeated foreign invasions. Even now, India can be richest if governments endeavor to recover back all the black money deposits of influential Indians in Swiss banks. Just, if you calculate all the money Indian government lost in all the scams that took place since independence you’ll be amazed to conclude that India would have been richest now if all those scams could’ve been prevented.

      Scholars like Aryabhata, Brahmagupta, Sushruta, Varahamihira, Madhvacharya,

      Bodhidharma (The founder of Shaolin temple and the first man to teach martial arts outside India) etc were all selfless scholars well supported by kings like Chandragupta. In olden days Kings ensured that all scholars in the kingdom were supported and encouraged. By the way, Aryabhata was a pandit in the court of The great Chandragupta I. So, in one way Aryabhata's research was sponsored.

      Thank you very much, you have given an another new angle of analysis.

      Anyone to add to this please?

          • Rashmith I didn't want to deviate to this mode of analysis either ,

            you have given an another new angle of analysis

            Actually I wanted to Emphasize about the fact about majority Indian's mindset ( ME also Included ) 

            to have a secured profession

            As I already mentioned using my example that I wanted to work with a Secured and Older platform like .net/php ( Web designing ) and later Landed with SAP.

            I mentioned Aryabhatta because of his valuable contribution for this Digital Age.


            If I was not able to Reflect my ideas properly then Kind Apologies for that.

          • No Sijin Chandran


                   I really thank you for mentioning 'Aryabhatta'.  I understand your point of view, but your point helped me  to explore little more deeply into India's (specifically ancient India's) contribution towards Research. Actually, I wrote it for myself using your point as a reason. Sorry for that and thank you very much for patiently going through all the blog.



          • Nothing to feel


            Rashmith 🙂 , few of the earlier comments made me feel  that I am deviating the Core topic of discussion here.

            Both of your documents in SCN are really appreciable.

  • Hi Rashmith Tula

                  Great post, done a great work. Thanks for sharing and keep contributing more. All the best.


    Dinesh Krishnaraj

  • I don't See Israel in the Graph as Israel has the highest no of R&D project in Software as well is in other ares of Science & Technology. Recently concluded Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to a CERN scientist from Israel.

    • Yes Priyesh. I am sorry, this is the statistics I could get finally from ‘United States Census Bureau’. I think they have done the survey only for these countries. I am not sure!



  • Hi Rashmith,

    Nice analysis. Keep it up.

    Keep sharing more information like this. All the best!

    I appreciate.

    Have a wonderful day!


    Hari Suseelan