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Chin. Phys. B, 2022, Vol. 31(6): 068903    DOI: 10.1088/1674-1056/ac5614
Special Issue: SPECIAL TOPIC— Interdisciplinary physics: Complex network dynamics and emerging technologies
SPECIAL TOPIC—Interdisciplinary physics: Complex network dynamics and emerging technologies Prev   Next  

Advantage of populous countries in the trends of innovation efficiency

Dan-Dan Hu(胡淡淡)1,2, Xue-Jin Fang(方学进)1,2, and Xiao-Pu Han(韩筱璞)1,2,†
1 Alibaba Research Center for Complexity Sciences, Hangzhou Normal University, Hangzhou 311121, China;
2 Institute of Information Economy and Alibaba Business School, Hangzhou Normal University, Hangzhou 311121, China
Abstract  A flurry of studies indicates that population size has a positive effect on innovation, however, cross-country empirical evidence remains sparse. In this paper, we add to the literature by investigating the relationship between population size and innovation efficiency at the country level through constructing three relative indexes based on the datasets of patent applications and Research and Development (R&D) investment. Different from previous studies based on absolute innovation indicators, the relative indexes can reflect the core innovation efficiency of economies by excluding the impact from the difference of economic development level, with a view putting all economies into a comparable standard framework. For all of the three relative indexes, their long-term trends show significant correlations with population size, and the economy with a larger population usually has better and stable performance on the trends of innovation efficiency. In addition, we find that there is a critical population size, over which the economy would be more likely to have a spontaneous improvement on innovation efficiency. This study provides direct evidence in supporting the population size advantage on the trends of innovation efficiency at the economy level and provides new insight to understand the rapid development of innovation in a few populous countries.
Keywords:  innovation efficiency      population size      the relative indexes  
Received:  20 July 2021      Revised:  22 January 2022      Accepted manuscript online:  17 February 2022
PACS:  89.65.Gh (Economics; econophysics, financial markets, business and management)  
  89.75.-k (Complex systems)  
  89.65.-s (Social and economic systems)  
Fund: Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 62073112 and 61673151) and the Zhejiang Provincial Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. LGF18F030007).
Corresponding Authors:  Xiao-Pu Han     E-mail:

Cite this article: 

Dan-Dan Hu(胡淡淡), Xue-Jin Fang(方学进), and Xiao-Pu Han(韩筱璞) Advantage of populous countries in the trends of innovation efficiency 2022 Chin. Phys. B 31 068903

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