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Journal number 3 ∘ Vakhtang Burduli


Expanded Summary

The article analyzes the statistics of the CSB of Georgia on the dissemination of innovations, considers several examples of the implementation of "basic" innovations in Georgia, considers the activities of the Georgian Agency for Innovations and Technologies for the dissemination of innovations and discusses regional problems of the diffusion of innovations through the organization of technoparks.

In order to study the statistics of the diffusion of innovations in Georgia, it is first of all necessary to study modern views on the classification of types of innovations, as well as to systematically investigate the modern sectoral (sectoral and subsector) problems of the diffusion of innovations, which I have done in the article [Бурдули В., 2020]. In particular, this article shows that innovations are subdivided into basic and improving ones, subject and process innovations, according to the type of novelty at the entrance to the enterprise and novelty in the market, according to the sources of production of innovations, etc., and also the fact that in modern conditions they are subdivided into innovations disseminated only within certain specific sectors (sectors, and in industry and subsectors) of the economy, and innovations disseminated in all sectors under the auspices of the green economy (up to 40% of all innovations currently spread in the world), information and communication technologies (or , in a broader sense of the digital economy), circular economy, production technologies and the use of composite materials and nanotechnology, ecology. Taking these circumstances into account, this article analyzes and systematizes the statistics of the spread of innovations, as well as some economic mechanisms that contribute to their spread.

In the first section, the statistics of the CSB of Georgia on the diffusion of innovations is analyzed, in which, in addition to general data on the participation of Georgian enterprises and organizations in the innovation process, percentage indicators are given on the distribution of certain types of innovations (by the type of novelty at the entrance to an enterprise and novelty in the market, by sources of production of innovations). In more detail, the statistical reporting provides only statistics on information and communication technologies, which is considered in the second section of the work. There are no separate statistics on the so-called “basic” innovations (the most significant, in particular, new production technologies), however, in the third section of the work, several such innovations implemented in Georgia are presented, which were covered in the press, in particular, on the Internet. The fourth section of the work examines the activities of the Agency for Innovation and Technology for the dissemination of innovations, including examples of innovative startups organized within the framework of the corresponding program of the agency [qveynis ...]. The last section discusses regional issues of innovation diffusion through the organization of technology parks.

Thus, the work consistently investigates issues related to the diffusion of innovations in Georgia.

The first section analyzes the information of the National Statistics Service of Georgia on the diffusion of innovations in the country. In particular, the percentage of enterprises that have introduced new or significantly improved goods and services to the market is presented here (Table 1). In this table, respectively, given in the first paragraph of the classification of types of innovations, the percentage of enterprises according to the criterion of the degree of novelty of innovations for the market and enterprise is shown. In table 4, in fact, as a percentage, the shares of enterprises that have carried out process innovations of certain types are shown. And in table 5 in percentages the shares of enterprises are indicated that, according to the criterion of the source of development (as well as for some areas of application, for example, design), have carried out various types of innovations. However, in our opinion, these statistics on innovations are to a certain extent superficial (and not clear enough) and require improvement. In particular, it is advisable that basic and improving innovations are separately identified, as well as which innovations and in which sectors have been implemented (for example, through the green economy, logistics, etc.), it is also advisable that a specific list of basic innovations be given.

This attempt was made, in part, only in relation to information and communication technologies, information about which is highlighted in the second section "Statistics of information and communication technologies and scientific activities". In particular, the share (in percent) of those enterprises that have access to the Internet is given, and the shares of the types of enterprises' connection with the Internet are also given in percent. Information is given on communication with the Internet through stationary and mobile devices, as well as on the use of software packages such as ERP (enterprise resource planning) by enterprises, etc.

This section also discusses the information of the National Statistics Service of Georgia on the use of information and communication technologies in households, which is quite extensive.

Information about scientific activities is not extensive. The number of scientific institutions, the number of personnel engaged in research and development is given, with the allocation of the number of doctors, masters, etc., the volume of work performed in Lari, the number of registered patents.

In our opinion, in order to increase the information content of statistics, it would be advisable to single out from the work performed those of them that are related to innovation, indicating the name of each of them.

The third section examines the activities of the Georgian Agency for Innovations and Technologies in the field of innovation diffusion. The Agency has created a number of effective mechanisms aimed at the diffusion of innovations: programs, financial mechanisms, infrastructure that promotes the diffusion of innovations.

Among the implemented programs are the following: "business incubators", "friendly start-up", "IT trainings" and "start-up Georgia". These programs are briefly covered in this section.

Among the “ongoing” programs, of significant interest is the Technology Transfer Pilot Program (TTPP), which aims to promote the commercialization of research projects that meet market demands. The implementation of the program is coordinated by the World Bank and the Georgian Agency for Innovation and Technology. As part of the program, there is a relationship with research institutes in order to identify and select ideas that have potential for commercialization.

This section also provides examples of startups initiated by the Georgian Agency for Innovation and Technology. Most of them are specialized in the field of information and communication or, more precisely, digital technologies, the use of which is possible in the processes of administrative management of enterprises or technology management of enterprises of certain industries (most of these startups use completely new innovative technologies that we have characterized in the article [Бурдули В., 2020], for example, VR technologies, chat bots and virtual assistants, Internet of Things, telemedicine, etc.). However, some are from other industries. For example, a startup Qvevry uses innovative technology to produce thousand-liter amphoras, Elven Tecnologies creates innovative, completely fireproof suits that are equipped with an internal cooling system, and Hand4Help startup is an organization that aims to create a high-tech hand prosthesis (although in this case, IT technologies are also needed).

Statistical reporting does not keep records of specific types of basic innovations. However, according to the data available on the Internet, in the fourth section I made an attempt to describe several basic innovative projects implemented in Georgia in the construction of power plants based on the use of renewable energy sources and in the production of composite materials and products from them.

The number of power plants based on the main renewable energy sources (excluding hydroelectric power plants), namely wind and solar power plants, is negligible in Georgia. Neither business representatives nor relevant government institutions dare to invest in the construction of such facilities. Primarily because they generate electricity unstably.

The problem of widespread use of solar and wind power plants in Georgia can be solved by the creation of energy storage units. Without them, it is impossible to solve the main problem of wind and solar power plants - dependence on the variability of the weather.

Appropriate storage batteries (accumulators for stationary installations in the electric power industry) are primarily used as energy storage devices for renewable energy sources. Recently, their intensive innovative modernization has been taking place in the world, as a result of which their cost has decreased by 2/3 from 2010 to 2020. Even more advanced types are expected to emerge over the next three years, Japan and South Korea with leading battery technology.

In my opinion, in order to study the appropriate storage batteries and develop recommendations for their purchase, it is advisable to create an appropriate small unit under the Agency for Innovations and Technologies of Georgia, which will deal with these issues.

Pumped storage power plants can also be created as energy storage units, for the establishment of which there are favorable conditions in Georgia.

As for the sphere of composite materials and products made from them, several relevant enterprises have already been created in Georgia, including the large Tbilisi plant for the production of composite products for aircraft (ATS). From the last example, it is obvious what difficulties the creation of such innovative objects is associated with. We need reliable relationships with foreign partners, suppliers of technologies necessary for the production of products, attracting foreign specialists to set up equipment, training specialists abroad for work at the enterprise.

The fifth section examines the technology parks and innovation centers founded in the regions of the country by the Georgian Agency for Innovation and Technologies and the laboratories (fablabs), training centers, joint workspaces, incubators, etc. represent the main elements of an innovation-driven startup ecosystem.