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The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) released its 2019 Edition of the World Intellectual Property Report, analysing millions of patent and scientific publication records. According to the report, the innovative activity has grown increasingly collaborative and transnational, while originating in a few large clusters located in a small number of countries.

Some 30 metropolitan hotspots alone accounted for 69 percent of patents and 48 percent of scientific activity during the 2015-2017 period. They are mostly located in five countries – China, Germany, Japan, the Republic of Korea and the United States of America (U.S.).

The report also states that the rise of highly successful innovation hotspots has coincided with a growing inter-regional polarisation of incomes, high-skilled employment and wages within countries. While other factors have contributed to such regional inequalities, regional support and development policies can play an important role in helping regions that have fallen behind.