Israel has ranked fifth among 20 “most innovative countries” during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a global innovation map published by StartupBlink, an Israeli-founded global startup ecosystem research center.
The map was put together with a range of partners including Crunchbase, Meetup, and SEMrush, and features hundreds of initiatives and solutions from across the world aiming to answer challenges posed by the disease as well as to help people cope and adapt to life during the crisis. The innovations were broken down into categories such as treatment, diagnostics, lifestyle adaptation, prevention, and grants.
The US came in first, followed by Canada, Estonia, and Switzerland in 4th place. Ireland came in 6th, followed by Italy, the UK, France and Spain rounding out the top 10.
Israel was listed with 13 innovations so far but users can submit projects and initiatives for consideration. These include tech and solutions put forth by Track Virus, an Israeli app that notifies users if they’ve crossed paths with a person confirmed to have tested positive for COVID-19, which NoCamels wrote about last month; the northern Israel-based Migal Research Institute which is working on a vaccine for the novel coronavirus; Israeli company Sonovia, which has developed an antimicrobial textile shield and is donating masks embedded with its tech to police and healthcare workers; digital health companies BioBeat, EarlySense, and Datos Health whose tech is being used to monitor patients in Israeli hospitals; Haifa-based firm EyePark, which provides automation of driver registration in drive-through testing facilities; and the Israel Innovation Authority which put out a call for proposals to develop, test, and implement technological solutions designed to deal with the challenges of COVID-19.
Houseparty, an Israeli-developed video chat platform that saw exponential growth as the pandemic left millions home-bound, was also listed among the innovations, as was Gaga People Dancers, a dancing movement that began offering classes live-streamed from Tel Aviv and New York on Zoom as the pandemic hit.
Cities were also ranked in the StartupBlink map according to their coronavirus-related innovation, with Tel Aviv coming in 11th. San Francisco was listed first, followed by Boston, New York, Toronto, and Milan in fifth place. StartupBlink said that some of the cities badly hit by the disease – such as New York, Milan, Paris, and London – were overperforming in the rankings and suggested this was because of their need to “excel and innovate” in a major health crisis.
StartupBlink says the map was “built with the goal to connect entrepreneurs around the world and showcase their projects to organizations that are looking for solutions for their communities.”