OECD Blue Sky Forum on Science and Innovation Indicators


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Every 10 years the OECD engages the policy community, data users and providers into an open dialogue to review and develop its long-term agenda on science, technology and innovation (STI) data and indicators. This event is known as the “OECD Blue Sky Forum”, an open and unconstrained discussion on evidence gaps in science and innovation and on initiatives the international community can take to address data needs in this area.

Blue Sky has been held in Paris (1996)Ottawa (2006) and Ghent (2016). Blue Sky II, in Ottawa, was marked by the announcement of Science for Science and Innovation Policy initiatives. It also launched OECD work on innovation in firms which exploited the potential of micro-data and informed the OECD Innovation Strategy of 2010 with the publication of Measuring Innovation: A New Perspective

OECD Blue Sky 2016 in Ghent

In October 2015, science and innovation ministers from OECD countries and several other major economies met in Daejeon, Korea, and signed the Declaration on Science, Technology and Innovation Policies for the Global and Digital Age. This calls for OECD to continue improving statistics and measurement systems to better capture the key features of science, technology and innovation. Ministers pointed at the OECD Blue Sky Forum 2016 as a key milestone in this process.


Key Objectives of Blue Sky 2016


    • Lead to a forward looking and policy relevant roadmap on STI measurement for OECD and beyond to consider and implement with their membership, other international organisations and experts. 
    • Discuss and review the main conceptual underpinnings of current frameworks for STI indicators and data infrastructure initiatives, as well as their uses by the policy and the research communities.
    • Explore the role of digital infrastructures in creating new opportunities for measurement and analysis, as well as challenges to existing standards of collection and quality of STI indicators.
    • Provide new opportunities for collaboration and strengthen the dialogue between: policy makers, data users and providers; national and global practices on indicators; efforts to build up and maintain underlying data resources and efforts to develop indicators; official statisticians and other practitioners; and STI data practitioners and practitioners in related statistical domains.

Summary of discussions at Blue Sky 3

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The Blue Sky Forum is organised by the OECD in partnership with the Belgium’s Federal Science Policy Office, the Flanders Regional Government, the University of Ghent and the City of Ghent.

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