Berlin and Hamburg top rank of innovations

ING Bank rates Berlin most innovative state - Hamburg is catching up
17 November 2021

The state of Berlin has topped the ING DiBa AG’s Innovations Ranking followed by Hamburg, which has closed the gap considerably compared to 2020.  Bavaria came third with Saxony-Anhalt in last place.

Hamburg in fast lane

Around 80 per cent of Hanseatic households have access to the fibre-optic network, which enables connections of up to 1,000 Mbit/ compared to merely 8 per cent of households in Berlin, according to the ING Innovation Index 2021. The above average ranking yielded a higher score for Hamburg. However, Berlin continues to lead the "skills" category. Around 44 per cent of Berlin's employees have tertiary education compared to 38 per cent in Hamburg. The Hanseatic city achieved top values in terms of "start-ups," "business dynamics" (ratio of commercial startups vs. commercial liquidations) and "youth potential" (proportion of under 20 to 50-year-olds vs. 50+).

Innovative strength key to resilience

This year's Innovation Index shows that "German states that are well ahead in categories that measure education and digitization have a high level of innovative strength overall." This makes for a positive correlation between a state's innovative strength and its resilience. Compared with Eurozone countries, Germany remains "in the upper midfield". However, Germany topped the ranking in terms of fast Internet and employment in the high-tech sector and in terms of  resilience. Ireland is considered the most innovative country in the Eurozone.

Eight categories

The ING Innovation Index is based on eight indicators: youth potential, skills, business dynamics, flexibility (share of self-employed in the workforce), innovative investments (patent applications), high technology (employees), Internet connections, and start-ups. All the figures refer to 2020 while the number of start-ups is for 2021. Data from the Federal Employment Agency, Destatis, BMVI, Eurostat, Crunchbase and the federal and state statistical offices, among others, were used for the ranking.