Assessment of the innovation level of the brazilian electric sector's (SEB) RD&I program


  • Gilmar dos Santos Marques Universidade de Brasília (UnB)
  • Maria Amélia de Paula Dias
  • José Luiz de Andrade Franco


The purpose of this article was to estimate the degree of innovation in SEB's RD&I program, and to assess the current status of the program in terms of the concept of the missing link of innovation or valley of death of innovation. The methodological procedures adopted were qualitative and exploratory, with mixed methods, including bibliographic and documental research and field research applied through a questionnaire in electronic form. Forty-eight questionnaires were answered from a population of 140 R&D managers and researchers from the SEB. The results obtained in the documental research indicate that Brazil is in an uncomfortable position in the Global Innovation Index (GII) ranking. It occupied the 47th position in 2011, and in 2021, it was 57th. It is 4th in the Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) Top 5 and among the BRICS; it is in the last position. The Innovation Efficiency Index (IEI) was 0.92 in 2011 and in 2021 it was 0.55. As for the Innovation Intensity Index, Brazil has only one company from the electricity sector in a ranking with 2,500 organizations. The evaluation of the RD&I maturity of the SEB revealed that it is a grade 3 ecosystem, under development. The estimation of the technological readiness level of the SEB showed that only 12.50% of the surveyed companies evaluate using the Technology Readiness Level (TRL) or Manufacturing Readiness Levels (MRL) scale, 47.92% do not evaluate TRL/MRL, and 39.58% evaluate, but remain in the initial stages. The analysis of the missing link of innovation leads to believe that the vast majority of projects of the RD&I of the SEB are plunging into the valley of death of innovation. It remains as a suggestion for research the formation of research networks in the SEB and the implementation of open innovation with the inclusion of startups.