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Green innovation booms in Sweden

Employment in research-intensive green-technology industries in Sweden grew by 15 per cent between 2007 and 2011, a report from Sweden’s innovation agency Vinnova has shown.

The study identified 75,000 green-technology jobs in 1,571 companies—in areas including air and water quality, renewable energy and waste management—with a combined revenue of 260 billion kronor (€31bn). Of these firms, around 20 per cent were found to carry out “explorative R&D”. Among larger firms, this means having a dedicated research department, whereas in smaller companies, especially in new industries, the whole enterprise is often exploratory and formed around a specific innovation.

Companies in the Green Technology Sector 2007-11, published by Vinnova on 20 March, shows that firms working on air quality and renewable energy do the most R&D: 32 per cent and 23 per cent of them, respectively, carry out R&D. In the fields of waste management and energy transfer, however, only 18 per cent and 6 per cent of firms are involved in explorative R&D.

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