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1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2009–10  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 04/06/2010   
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Contents >> Research and innovation >> Innovation activity of businesses

INNOVATION ACTIVITY OF BUSINESSES

Innovation is generally considered to be the development, introduction or implementation of new or significantly improved goods, services or processes. Innovation is a key driver of economic growth.

The 2007-08 innovation data were collected in the 2007-08 Business Characteristics Survey (BCS). This survey collected Information about four broad types of innovative activity undertaken by businesses in Australia: goods or services; operational processes; organisational/managerial processes; and marketing methods. The survey also covered three statuses of innovation: introduced or implemented; still in development; and abandoned.

Based on the combination of type and status of innovative activity, two statistical measures of business innovation have been produced:

  • Innovating businesses - businesses that introduced or implemented an innovation during the survey reference period.
  • Innovation-active businesses - businesses that had undertaken any innovative activity, including the introduction or implementation of an innovation, and/or businesses with an incomplete and/or abandoned innovative activity.

During 2007-08, innovating businesses in Australia represented 39.1% of all businesses; innovation which was incomplete at end-June 2008 was undertaken by 22.5% of all businesses; innovation which had been abandoned during the year was undertaken by 6.9% of all businesses; and 44.9% of businesses were innovation-active in the period (table 26.7).

26.7 Businesses involved in innovation(a)(b)

%

Businesses which introduced or implemented:
Any new or significantly improved goods or services
21.9
Any new or significantly improved operational processes
17.6
Any new or significantly improved organisational/managerial processes
19.0
Any new or significantly improved marketing methods
14.6
Any of the above (i.e. Innovating businesses)
39.1
Businesses with innovative activity which was still in development(c)
22.5
Businesses with innovative activity which was abandoned(c)
6.9
Proportion of businesses that were innovation-active
44.9

(a) Proportions are of all businesses.
(b) During 2007-08.
(c) Innovative activity includes any work that was intended to result in the introduction or implementation of new or significantly improved goods, services or processes.
Source: ABS Selected Characteristics of Australian Business, 2007–08 (8167.0).


The proportion of innovating businesses increased with business size, ranging from 31.6% for businesses with 0-4 people employed, to 65.9% for those businesses with 200 or more people employed. At the industry level, Wholesale trade had the highest proportion of innovating businesses (51.4%), followed by Retail trade (50.9%) (table 26.8).


26.8 BUSINESSES INVOLVED IN INNOVATION(a), Selected characteristics(b)

Businesses which:

were innovating
started but did not yet complete any innovative activity
started but abandoned any innovative activity
were innovation-active
%
%
%
%

Employment size
0-4 persons
31.6
17.9
5.7
37.0
5-19 persons
49.8
28.6
9.4
56.1
20-199 persons
60.0
35.5
8.4
65.9
200 or more persons
65.9
46.2
6.8
70.8
Industry(c)
Mining
39.0
26.4
5.5
48.9
Manufacturing
45.6
31.1
9.9
53.4
Electricity, gas, water and waste services
40.8
24.3
3.9
47.4
Construction
27.3
13.8
3.8
31.1
Wholesale trade
51.4
33.8
12.1
59.3
Retail trade
50.9
23.9
9.0
56.6
Accommodation and food services
38.6
19.8
8.5
43.2
Transport, postal and warehousing
31.3
15.0
3.3
35.2
Information media and telecommunications
45.1
30.2
7.4
55.4
Financial and insurance services
42.7
21.2
6.4
47.1
Rental, hiring and real estate
40.5
22.5
6.0
47.5
Professional, scientific and technical services
43.9
28.3
7.2
50.3
Administrative and support services
36.7
21.2
4.2
43.8
Health care and social asistance
30.4
20.8
5.4
35.7
Arts and recreation services
35.4
21.2
6.4
44.4
Other services
38.2
22.1
10.2
44.1
Total
39.1
22.5
6.9
44.9

(a) During 2007–08.
(b) Proportions are of businesses in each category.
(c) Classified according to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC), 2006 edition.
Source: ABS Summary of IT Use and Innovation in Australian Business (8166.0).




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