Researchers in R&D (per million people)

Definition: The number of researchers engaged in Research &Development (R&D), expressed as per million. Researchers are professionals who conduct research and improve or develop concepts, theories, models techniques instrumentation, software of operational methods. R&D covers basic research, applied research, and experimental development.

Description: The map below shows how Researchers in R&D (per million people) varies by country. The shade of the country corresponds to the magnitude of the indicator. The darker the shade, the higher the value. The country with the highest value in the world is Israel, with a value of 8,250.48. The country with the lowest value in the world is Niger, with a value of 7.42.

Source: UNESCO Institute for Statistics (

See also: Country ranking, Time series comparison

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Limitations and Exceptions: Estimates of the resources allocated to R&D are affected by national characteristics such as the periodicity and coverage of national R&D surveys across institutional sectors and industries; and the use of different sampling and estimation methods. R&D typically involves a few large performers, hence R&D surveys use various techniques to maintain up-to-date registers of known performers, while attempting to identify new or occasional performers.

Statistical Concept and Methodology: Researchers are professionals engaged in the conception or creation of new knowledge, products, processes, methods and systems, as well as in the management of these projects. Students studying at the master’s or doctoral level (ISCED2011 level 7 or 8) engaged in R&D are included. The OECD's Frascati Manual defines research and experimental development as "creative work undertaken on a systemic basis in order to increase the stock of knowledge, including knowledge of man, culture and society, and the use of this stock of knowledge to devise new applications." R&D covers basic research, applied research, and experimental development. (1) Basic research - Basic research is experimental or theoretical work undertaken primarily to acquire new knowledge of the underlying foundation of phenomena and observable facts, without any particular application or use in view. (2) Applied research - Applied research is also original investigation undertaken in order to acquire new knowledge; it is, however, directed primarily towards a specific practical aim or objective. (3) Experimental development - Experimental development is systematic work, drawing on existing knowledge gained from research and/or practical experience, which is directed to producing new materials, products or devices, to installing new processes, systems and services, or to improving substantially those already produced or installed. The fields of science and technology used to classify R&D according to the Revised Fields of Science and Technology Classification are: 1. Natural sciences; 2. Engineering and technology; 3. Medical and health sciences; 4. Agricultural sciences; 5. Social sciences; 6. Humanities and the arts. Data are for full-time equivalent (FTE); the FTE of R&D personnel is defined as the ratio of working hours actually spent on R&D during a specific reference period (usually a calendar year) divided by the total number of hours conventionally worked in the same period by an individual or by a group. The data are obtained through statistical surveys which are regularly conducted at national level covering R&D performing entities in the private and public sectors.

Aggregation method: Weighted average

Periodicity: Annual