Fostering talent and skills for innovation (The Innovation Imperative: Contributing to Productivity, Growth and Well-Being)

A wide range of policies affects the various drivers of innovation. Among the most important of these policies for innovation are a skilled workforce that can generate new ideas and technologies, bring them to the market, and adapt to technological changes across society. Skilled people generate knowledge that can be used to create and implement innovations, and skills are also crucial to help absorb new innovations throughout economy and society. Human capital policy for innovation must address a wide array of skills and should help create an environment that enables individuals to choose and acquire appropriate skills and that supports the optimal use of these skills at work. This includes more incentives to institutions to improve the quality and relevance of their teaching as well as support for firm-level training. Policy makers should also assess the attractiveness of careers in academic research and improve these if necessary. Moreover, barriers to women’s participation in science and entrepreneurship need to be removed. Finally, policy should facilitate the development of linkages and networks among researchers across countries.
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