Switzerland named most competitive nation



Switzerland has topped a new study which measures a nation’s competitiveness based on the quality of skilled talent it can produce, attract and retain.

INSTEAD’s first Global Talent Competitiveness Index (GTCI) covers 103 countries and was designed to provide a neutral, global and respected index that would enable private and public players to assess the effectiveness of talent-related policies and practices, identify priorities for action in relevant areas and inform international and local debates in the talent arena.

Each country was assessed against six main factors – Enablers, Attract, Grow, Retain, Labour and Vocational Skills (LV) and Global Knowledge Skills (GK).

“There is a widespread mismatch between what companies need in terms of skills and what local labour markets can offer,” explained Ilian Mihov, Dean of INSEAD. “Educational institutions are under pressure to supply the employable skills that the new global knowledge economy demands.

“Obviously, these issues require a collaborative effort among government, business, organised labour and global business schools such as INSEAD. While the approach may not be uniform across various economic environments, the provision of fact-based quantitative indicators such as the GTCI can help identify options and facilitate action,” he added.

The first GTCI rankings are heavily dominated by European countries. The top ten include only two non-European countries – Singapore in second place and the United States in ninth.

Within Europe, it is mostly the northern part of the continent that appears as most ‘talent competitive’ – Denmark was third, Sweden fourth, Luxembourg fifth, Netherlands sixth, the UK seventh, Finland eighth and Iceland tenth.

The top-ranked nations all have many aspects in common, including a long-standing commitment to quality education (UK, Switzerland, Finland, Sweden), history of immigration (US, Australia – which ranked 15th) and a clear strategy to grow and attract the best and brightest (Singapore).

First-placed Switzerland excelled in almost all variables, its least convincing performance being on the Attract factor. It ranked first on both the LV and GK factors.

INSTEAD is one of the world’s largest graduate business schools with campuses in France, Abu Dhabi and Singapore.

Article published 3rd December 2013