Spanish Innovation Index

How is the ÍEI calculated?

Technical description

The conceptual model behind this index is described below:


The Innovation Index considers a view of dynamic change processes in the co-creation of value.


Conceptual model


To capture these dynamics, several innovative steps are taken following the methodology used for more than 20 years in the customer satisfaction index.

1. As a growing body of research suggests, it is unrealistic to assume that customers develop clear perceptions about every existing or new element in a company’s product portfolio. From the customer’s perspective, innovations at the product and attribute level are nothing more than a means to solve customer problems, realizing value and reconfiguring relationships in a novel way and in a given context. Thus, the innovation index captures customer reactions to changes in the dimensions of value co-creation resulting from product- and attribute-level innovations, such as value proposition, value realization, relationship experience and interaction space (see Research model in the figure).

2. Innovation launches create cognitive and emotional responses that may be short-lived, yet have a profound influence on customer beliefs, attitudes and associations. In many cases, the effects of the innovation may emerge long after the launch. To better capture these effects over time, the innovation index data are collected on an annual basis, allowing for annual and quarterly comparisons and even quasi-experimental studies.

3. Although the end consumer is the judge of innovation, the innovation index recognizes that innovations are launched by companies. To capture the actual launches by companies, we also conduct an additional qualitative study in which marketing managers from some of the companies on the ranking list present the specific changes they have made in the previous year. In addition, customers participating in the main quantitative study have the opportunity to share their opinions on the companies’ activities in a text field. This allows direct comparison of managers’ and customers’ perspectives on innovation based on the actors’ own reflections and vocabulary.

Through a market research company (Sigmados), we collect more than 24,000 customer responses annually from more than 120 companies in 20 industries. Constructs and measures are theoretically derived and validated through a series of pre-tests.

Research model:

About the sample

(companies and consumers)

Data collection involves 2 sampling strategies: one for selecting companies and one for selecting respondents.

  • Sampling of companies

For the selection of companies, the following criteria are applied:

1) the companies must represent the sectors with the highest proportion of household expenditure, together accounting for at least 70% of all household consumption (for which we use the INE’s Household Budget Survey as reference)

2) the selected companies must represent a minimum of 70% of the respective markets within each of the selected sectors.

  • Sampling of respondents

Sigmados recruits respondents from their own, nationally representative web-panel that consists of more than 50000 individuals. The size of this web-panel allows multiple representative sampling based on gender, age and geographic location. Panelists’ participation is based on a points-based incentive system (points earned can be redeemed for products in a catalog) and their motivation is periodically verified in order to define their continuity or withdrawal from the panel.

Data collection is conducted in 4 waves (quarterly data). At the beginning of a quarterly survey, randomly selected panel members identify from a list of companies those they have used on a regular basis over the past six months. Each respondent then completes the questionnaire for up to three companies that are randomly selected from among those identified from the list. A total between 100 and 300 evaluations are collected per company.



The ranking is based on factor scores that are calculated using structural equation modeling. This provides a more accurate estimate compared to weighted averages of the observed variables. Factor scores are then extracted from each variable of interest, normalized and used to calculate weighted average scores for the constructs on a 100-point scale.

With the collaboration of the consulting firm Neovantas, we published the annual ranking of companies according to commercial innovation, digital innovation and social innovation, from the consumer’ perspective.

Neovantas is an international management consulting firm and is a strategic partner of UC3M in the implementation of the ÍEI. Neovantas works to accelerate change through advanced analytics, understanding the cognitive mechanisms behind the data.. Its experimental methodology guarantees results que reduzcan el gap entre intención y comportamiento de forma sostenible way over time.


To provide distinctive, pragmatic and vital recommendations and solutions for companies.