Researcher Hugo Hollanders and Prof. Jo Ritzen contributed to the Global Knowledge Index 2021, commissioned by the United Nations Development Programme and the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation.
The Global Knowledge Index monitors the knowledge status of 154 countries across areas including education, innovation, and information & communications technology. Now covering 232 indicators, it is aims to help policymakers, researchers, civil society and the private sector to bridge knowledge gaps and foster knowledge-based societies.
The index shows how countries across the Global South need more support in quality education, decent work and regulatory frameworks, but also highlights new opportunities. Consider Mauritius, for example, where investments in ICT contribute to its strong performance, coming in 49th place. Overall, this year’s global rankings were topped by Switzerland, while the Netherlands came in 5th place.
The adoption of new technologies in response to COVID-19 are also highlighted by the index. The United Nations is at the forefront of efforts to support this innovation surge; for example, helping countries like Nigeria and Honduras to ensure greater financial inclusion via electronic cash transfers.
Hugo Hollanders said: “For the 2021 edition the measurement framework has been revised to reflect the latest developments in our understanding of the process of knowledge-based economic and social development. Prof. Jo Ritzen and I contributed as experts by reviewing the new structure of the Research, Development and Innovation sub-index.”
The opinions expressed here are the author’s own; they do not necessarily reflect the views of UNU.
UNDP, Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation.