The U.S., Japan, South Korea, and Germany Dominate in Nanotechnology Today - But Taiwan and China Are Rising

Lux Research Report Charts Shifts in Competitiveness as

Winners and Losers Emerge in Nanotechnology

Nov 03, 2005, 00:00 ET from Lux Research

    NEW YORK, Nov. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Since then-President Bill Clinton
 launched the U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative in 2000, nations have
 invested heavily in nanotechnology in the hopes of increasing GDP, attracting
 investment, and creating high-paying jobs. Nations challenged to secure energy
 independence, provide clean water, reduce pollution, and augment war-fighting
 forces also see potential solutions in nanotech. So which nations are winning
 the nanotechnology race? The U.S., Japan, South Korea, and Germany dominate
 today -- but Taiwan and China will challenge them for leadership in the next
 seven years, according to a report from Lux Research entitled "Ranking the
 Nations: Nanotech's Shifting Global Leaders."
     For this report, Lux Research assessed 14 countries spanning four
 continents with a rigorous, quantitative methodology driven by exhaustive
 secondary research, primary interviews with government and business executives
 in each country, and on-site visits in countries including the U.S., Japan,
 Taiwan, China, the U.K., and Germany. Each nation was measured on 17 metrics
 across two axes. The first axis, nanotechnology activity - including metrics
 like national nanotech funding, government and university nanotech centers,
 and corporate nanotech R&D spending - measures the raw material that
 researchers and businesses in a country have to work with in commercializing
 nanotechnology. The second axis, technology development strength  - including
 metrics like high-tech manufacturing as percent of GDP, R&D spending as
 percent of GDP, and size of the technology and science workforce - measures
 the country's demonstrated ability to develop its economy through science and
 technology in general.
     The report finds that:
     -- Four countries rank as "Dominant," scoring high on both nanotechnology
        activity and technology development  strength: The U.S., Japan, South
        Korea, and Germany.
     -- Three countries - all technology  powerhouses with relatively small
        populations - rank as "Niche Players." They  score low on
        nanotechnology activity on an absolute basis, but high on the
        technology development strength needed to convert that activity into
        jobs and GDP. These countries are Taiwan, Israel, and Singapore.
     -- Two countries come out as "Ivory Tower" nations, high on
        nanotechnology activity but low on technology development strength in
        relative terms: The U.K. and  France.
     -- Five nations are in nanotechnology's  "Minor League" today, scoring low
        on both axes: China, Canada, Australia, Russia, and India.
     The report emphasizes that countries' competitive positions in
 nanotechnology are changing rapidly, and forecasts how their rankings will
 change over the next seven years. The report predicts that Taiwan will leap
 into a dominant role on the basis of its large nanotech spending, extremely
 well-coordinated nanotech initiatives through its Industrial Technology
 Research Institute, and ability to ramp up commercialization by tapping
 mainland Chinese labor and facilities.  China will approach Dominant status -
 the country has moved from fifth place to second in nanotechnology
 publications over the last ten years while the shares of publications in Japan
 and Germany dropped, and China spends more government money on nanotech
 research at purchasing-power parity than any other country except the U.S.
 Without significant strategy swings, some Western nations' positions today
 will erode: France and the UK risk sliding into stagnation, with little
 commercial output to show for their groundbreaking academic work.
     The report emphasizes that, in a globalized economy, commercial horsepower
 is just as important as invention and discovery. "Many countries are investing
 millions or billions in primary research into nanotechnology," said Lux
 Research Senior Analyst David Lackner. "But the true winners - who reap the
 rewards of those huge investments - will be the ones that discover how to
 incorporate nanotechnology breakthroughs into new manufacturing techniques,
 medical treatments, and finished products."
     The report contains individual assessments of each country's position and
 drills down in detail on each criterion in the framework. The forecast of
 nations' competitive positions through 2012 also identifies which sectors each
 nation currently excels in with regard to nanotechnology (manufacturing and
 materials, electronics and IT, and healthcare and life sciences) as well as
 its position with regard to the four "ecosystem roles" required to bring
 nanotech innovations to market (funder, innovator, manufacturer, and
 marketer). The report is available immediately to clients of Lux Research's
 Nanotechnology Strategies advisory service. For more information on how to
 become a client, contact Nick Katsoulis at +1 (212) 644-9563.
     About Lux Research:
     Lux Research is the world's leading nanotechnology research and advisory
 firm. We help our clients make better decisions to profit from nanoscale
 science and technology, tapping into our analysts' unique expertise and
 unrivaled network. Our clients include top decision makers at large
 corporations, portfolio managers and analysts at leading financial
 institutions, CEOs of the most innovative start-ups, and visionary public
 policy makers. To get connected and for more information, visit

SOURCE Lux Research