You are here: About the OfficeInternational cooperationInternational organisationsCooperation in policy-makingOrganisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
13 February 2003
Last modified: 14 December 2017
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National Research, Development and Innovation Office is responsible for managing OECD co-operation in the field of Science and Technology (S&T). Governance of the S&T field belongs to the Directorate for Science, Technology and Industry (STI) in the organisation of OECD.

Directorate for Science, Technology and Industry (STI)

In the knowledge-based economy, science and technology and their applications in industry and communications are major sources of economic growth and well-being. Ways of making productive use of human knowledge are changing, and the period ahead will be dynamic but unpredictable. The Directorate for Science, Technology and Industry addresses analytical and policy issues in these areas.
STI's task requires understanding what is happening in laboratories, on shop floors and in markets. It is attentive to coming changes and seeks to prepare for the future by providing data, quantitative indicators and analytical studies as a basis for examining the effectiveness of national policies.
STI is a forum for examining national policies to make them more effective, and a forum for improving convergence or compatibility of national policies where appropriate. It works with Members to obtain internationally comparable data and provides them with information on the scientific, technological and industrial environment and its relation to general economic goals (growth, employment).
STI seeks suitable areas for, and helps to set up, co-operation in science, technology and industry. It identifies areas where it would be useful to develop OECD-wide standards or rules of the game in order to avoid international friction, and helps in formulating them.

The main activities of STI are:

Industry Issues

The Committee on Industry and Business Environment (CIBE) focuses on drivers of industrial productivity and related policies, factors affecting the performance of (large and small) firms and (manufacturing and service) sectors, and patterns and levels of industrial globalisation.

Information and Communications Policy

The Committee for Information, Computer and Communications Policy (ICCP) addresses issues arising from the "digital economy", the developing global information infrastructure and the evolution towards a global information society.

S&T Policy

Work of the Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy aims at informing the policy debates on the contribution of science and technology to sustainable growth and societal needs in knowledge-based economies and at promoting international co-operation in scientific research.

Scientific, Industrial and Health Applications of Biotechnology

Recognising that biotechnology was (and is) driven by fundamental research and discovery, the Directorate for Science, Technology and Industry (STI) has covered this sector since 1980 and continues to follow advances in basic research on biotechnology and its applications.

Statistical Analysis of Science, Technology and Industry

The DSTI manages databases of internationally comparable statistics in the areas of science, technology and industry. These statistics and indicators underpin policy-related analytical work, particularly with respect to links between technology, competitiveness and globalisation. DSTI also plays a leading role in the development of international statistical standards in the STI area.


Transport issues covered in the STI by its Division of Transport include maritime transport, the Programme of Co-operation in the Field of Research on Road Transport and Intermodal Linkages, and aviation, as well as shipbuilding and tourism, which are sectoral activities related to transport.

Activities in the field of S&T Policy managing by STI

International comparisons, monitoring and assessment of policies in the S&T and innovation areas (STI Outlook). Analyses of factors and policies that impinge upon the efficiency of Member countries S&T systems, notably as regards their contribution to sustainable economic growth and the fulfilment of social needs.
Development of benchmarking methodologies and identification of best practices to assist Member countries improving the design and implementation of S&T and innovation policies and the governance of public research institutions.
Identifying high-priority science policy issues, notably global issues, that can benefit from enhanced international consultation and collaboration, with the participation of international scientific organisations; Facilitate the development of action-oriented recommendations for subsequent international co-operation.
Responding, through international co-operation, to the scientific, economic, and societal policy challenges posed by the rapid development of life sciences, in particular genomics and bioinformatics, and their actual and potential applications.

Innovation and Technology Policy

OECD monitors and benchmarks Member country technology and innovation policies and assesses their impact on economic performance. It identifies good policy practices in areas such as support to R&D, public/private partnerships for innovation, and overall management of national innovation systems.

Intellectual Property Rights

The OECD explores the role of Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) in stimulating the diffusion of knowledge and fostering innovation. It studies the economic impact of IP regimes in high-tech industries and in public research; assesses policies and institutional practices for IP management and exploitation; and develops indicators to assess the effectiveness of technology transfer.

International Scientific Co-operation (Global Science Forum)

The Global Science Forum brings together science policy officials from OECD countries. The delegates, who meet twice a year, seek to identify and maximise opportunities for international co-operation in basic scientific research.

Management of Public Research

The OECD analyses the evolution of and trends of changes in the policy of Member countries for public research. It focuses on important issues such as the governance of systems, new mechanisms for priority setting and funding of research and questions relating to human resources in science.

Social Sciences

In 1998 the OECD, under the auspices of its Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy (CSTP), launched an activity on the role of the social sciences in the science and innovation system. This activity concentrated on a series of workshops.

Technology and Sustainable Development

Technology and innovation play a key role in sustainable development. However, our socio-economic system does not provide adequate drivers of innovation and technological change aimed at this goal. This theme explores how innovation and technology can better contribute to sustainable development.

The Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy (CSTP) is responsible for encouraging co-operation among Member countries in the field of science, technology and innovation policy under supervision of STI.

Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy (CSTP)


1. The Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy shall be responsible for encouraging co-operation among Member countries in the field of science, technology and innovation policy, with a view to contributing to the achievement of their economic, social and scientific aims, including job creation, sustainable development and advancing the frontiers of knowledge. It shall pay particular attention to the integration of science, technology and innovation policy with other aspects of government policy, which is of increasing importance in the emerging knowledge society.
2. The Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy shall, more particularly, be responsible for:

  1. Improving, through analytical work and the development of relevant internationally comparable indicators, the understanding of the process through which science, technology and innovation contribute to increased knowledge, productivity growth, economic performance, job creation, sustainable development and social well-being.
  2. Promoting the exchange of information and discussion among Member countries on policies for science, technology and innovation, facilitating the international comparison and identification of relevant best policy practices, and identifying areas where compatibility of such policies could be of mutual interest to Member countries.
  3. Promoting the exchange of information and discussion among Member countries on policies to maintain a strong and creative base of scientific research, including large research infrastructures and the management of human resources.
  4. Improving the understanding of Member countries both of foreseeable developments of technology and their likely national as well as international economic, social and environmental consequences.
  5. Promoting the exchange of information and discussion among Member countries on measures to promote public understanding of science and technology, and to strengthen within each Member country the dialogue and interaction with science, business, and civil society in the formulation and implementation of science, technology and innovation policies.
  6. Facilitating the efforts to develop international co-operation in science and technology among Member countries, as well as between Member countries and non-Member countries.
  7. Facilitating the efforts of the governments of Member countries to strengthen the scientific and technological capabilities of developing countries.

3. In the pursuit of these objectives, the Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy shall determine the strategic orientations of its subsidiary bodies, and ensure their co-ordination, policy integration and evaluation. It shall maintain close working relationships with other relevant bodies of the Organisation, particularly the Industry Committee, the Committee for Information, Computer and Communications Policy, the Trade Committee, the Economic Policy Committee, the Environment Policy Committee and the Education Committee. The Committee shall also co-operate as appropriate with other international and regional organisations active in the field of science, technology and innovation policy.

Updated: 14 December 2017
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