Feeds

R&D and skills crisis looms for Europe

Black! Black! It's all black!

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One Infographic

Europe is facing a crisis in science and technology according to two new reports. The European Commission says its figures show a continuing decline in the amount European firms are increasing their spending on R&D. It warns that if the trend is not reversed, Europe will miss its target of boosting R&D spend to three per cent of GDP by 2010, and that this represents a "major threat" to Europe's knowledge economy.

Figures for 2005 show that R&D intensity, as the EC calls it, is close to stagnation. Although the amount invested in R&D as a percentage of GDP is still growing, the growth rate has been falling since 2000, and only rose by 0.2 per cent last year.

Currently, Europe spends an average on 1.93 per cent of its GDP on research and development - much less than the US and Japan, who spend 2.59 per cent and 3.15 per cent respectively. Even China is likely to pull ahead of Europe. Although it only invests 1.31 per cent in R&D at the moment, its spend has been growing at around 10 per cent per year, since 1997, putting it on track to reach 2.2 per cent investment by 2010.

The EC points to a slow down in business investment in R&D as being behind the poor figures, although it conceded that an increase in the amount governments are pumping into the sector has compensated slightly.

Meanwhile, analysts at research house, Forrester, warn that Europe is also facing a looming IT skills crisis. It says that by 2006, companies will not need technicians, so much as more business-focused IT managers. The shift will be driven by an increase in outsourcing of routine tech activities.

Forrester argues that although the Education system should be able to develop the courses that will produce these more corporate-than-BOFH IT types, it will not happen fast enough to meet the demands of businesses in the region. ®

Related stories

Gates: You just can't get the staff
European governments cautious on IT spend
Public beats private for IT pay rises

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Chips are down at Broadcom: Thousands of workers laid off
Cellphone baseband device biz shuttered
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.