To improve its competitiveness as a strong region within Europe, Flanders has affirmed its commitment to the European objective of spending 3% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on Research and Development (R&D) by 2020 (for more details see ‘Investigating in European Research. Towards 3% of GDP’). Progress in approaching this 3% objective is checked each year based on numbers obtained from the R&D Survey and the Innovation Survey (CIS).

The 3% light note, published on June 30, 2020, discusses the R&D numbers for the period 2008-2018. R&D expenditures are being discussed, the breakdown of private versus public funding of R&D is checked, and the numbers of Flanders are benchmarked against those of Belgium as a whole, as well as those of other countries, both within and outside of Europe.

On July 3, 2020 the GDP for Flanders has been updated for the 2009-2014 period. We have implemented these revisions in a new version of the 3% light note. 

Update October 2020: An update is provided of the international comparison of the breakdown of public versus private funding of R&D activities, which was described in more detail in the 3% note 2019. Updates of those numbers available for other countries and regions from EUROSTAT and OECD were used. Private funding from abroad was now taken into account. The updates are described in an interpretative note and an addendum that accompany the original 3% note of 2019.

3% note 2020

3 % Note

Previous editions of the 3% note

ECOOM delivers the 3% note since 2007. The 3% notes of the previous years can be consulted below.