52% are innovating

The UK Community Innovation Survey found 52% of the enterprises they covered were innovators. But a greater proportion of large enterprises were innovators and this was particularly pronounced in manufacturing where 80% were innovators.

Innovators were considered to be those companies that introduced new or improved products, processes or services. The survey also showed that while 25% of innovating enterprises undertook R&D, a range of other activities were also important including the purchase of capital equipment, external sourcing of technology, industrial design and training directly linked to technological change.

On the survey DTI minister John Battle said, ‘This survey shows encouraging levels of technological innovation across a wide range of UK enterprise. But it also reveals considerable variability in performance highlighting the need for government policies aimed at encouraging the spread of innovation culture.

‘We have much work to do to shape our future.’

The survey was conducted throughout the European Union by the Office for National Statistics for the DTI and covers the period 1994-96.