With Sustainable Development Goal 9 (SDG 9), countries have pledged to “build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation”. In particular, Target 9.5 calls upon them to encourage innovation and substantially increase the number of researchers, as well as public and private spending on research and experimental development (R&D).

Countries have selected two indicators to monitor this target: R&D expenditure as a proportion of GDP and researchers (in full-time equivalent) per 1 million inhabitants. Both indicators are already being produced by the UIS, which has time series data going back about 50 years to track trends over time.

To better reflect the cross-cutting nature of science, technology and innovation (STI) across all of the SDGs, the UIS is working with countries and partners to develop a more comprehensive set of STI indicators. These thematic indicators will be internationally comparable so that they can be used to better target policies and measure progress towards national, regional and global development goals.

Latest News

sdg9-icon.png The UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) has just updated its global database on research and experimental development (R&D) with more recent...
Research and experimental development (R&D) plays a pivotal role in driving a country’s economic growth and hence is instrumental in alleviating poverty. As part of the Sustainable Development...
The UIS has published updated data on the human and financial resources devoted to research and experimental development (R&D) for 162 countries and territories. This includes the results of the...
  • Visualisation

    Research and Development Spending

  • Visualisation

    UNESCO eAtlas of Research and Experimental Development