The fundamental and rapid changes associated with the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) or Industry 4.0 have significantly facilitated digital transformation processes in recent years. How Europe has performed in this regard in comparison to the USA is the topic of a just-published, joint report by the European Patent Office (EPO) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).
In “Deep tech innovation in smart connected technologies”, the EPO and EIB analyse how small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have been developing 4IR technologies. Special focus is put on deep tech companies that have actively patented 4IR technologies in the past decade. By comparing European and US-based SMEs, the study highlights the specific challenges of growing deep tech businesses in Europe.
According to the report's key findings, European SMEs have contributed 10% of international patent families (IPFs) in 4IR technologies invented in the European Union. In comparison, US SMEs account for 16% of their country’s contribution, adding to the overall leadership of the USA in advanced digital technologies. More than 30% of 4IR SMEs in the EU and the USA mention the availability of finance as a major business barrier.
- Publication date
- 2 May 2022