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CEA ranked No. 1 worldwide for innovation in public research

​​​​​In the latest Clarivate ranking of the world's top 100 innovators, CEA is ranked 31st and first among public research organizations. This performance rewards CEA-Leti's policy of promoting innovation and its scientific and economic impact, notably through the filing of patent applications.

Published on 24 June 2024

CEA: France's number one innovator

In its ranking of innovators for 2023, Clarivate places CEA 31st worldwide, and first in France. This is CEA's twelfth appearance in Clarivate's top 100, an unprecedented level of consistency for a French player. It also ranks third in Europe (behind Siemens and Ericsson).​

In addition, CEA ranks first worldwide in the “Government and academic research” sector, which includes public research players such as Taiwan's Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI).

Leti is CEA's leading contributor for patent applications​

​This ranking underlines the relevance of the CEA's policy to promote innovation, in which CEA-Leti plays a leading role. Of the 633 INPI patent applications filed by CEA in 2023, 295, or around 47%, originate from CEA-Leti. These patents primarily relate to innovations in microelectronics, photonics, cybersecurity and healthcare technologies. 

“Patents are at the heart of CEA-Leti's strategy,” explains David Vaufrey, Head of Industrial Property at CEA-Leti. "They enable us to give our industrial partners a tangible competitive edge. That's why we encourage our research engineers to take this approach, by providing them with support and highlighting the importance of filing patents."


In addition to industrial partnerships, patents are particularly important when creating a startup as a patent portfolio can be its main asset at the beginning of its activity. Examples include Quobly, Steerlight, Injectpower and Wormsensing. And this is just one of the possible approaches to support innovation, favored by CEA-Leti's “lab-to-fab” strategy. ​

“This approach aims to develop innovations that are as close as possible to the needs of manufacturers,” explains David Vaufrey. "The end result is a new partnership, a licensing agreement and/or the creation of a start-up."​


Innovation as measured by patents​

Measuring innovation is no easy task as it is already difficult to find a universally accepted definition of the term. Yet since 2012, Clarivate has been compiling a list of the world's most innovative players. And for the first time this year, they proposed a ranking of the top 100 players (and not just an alphabetical list).

To achieve this, Clarivate relies on intellectual property protected by patent rights, commonly considered to be a measurable indicator of innovation. More precisely, a “Global Innovator Score" is calculated based on the combination of:

  • The strength of patented inventions: this notion combines the influence, success, investment and rarity associated with each invention
  • And the international scope of the patent application or corresponding patent ​

​“This ranking enables us to compare a number of global players in terms of their innovation strategies and investments. And it does so by focusing on patentable inventions, which is in line with our approach to innovation at CEA-Leti,” explains David Vaufrey.​

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