Today's theories and models on innovation stress the importance of scientific capabilities and science-technology proximity, especially in new emerging fields of economic activity. In this contribution we examine the relationship between national scientific capabilities, the science intensity of technology and technological performance within six emergent industrial fields. Our findings reveal that national technological performance is positively associated with scientific capabilities. Countries performing better on a technological level are characterized both by larger numbers of publications and by numbers of involved institutions that exceed average expected values. The latter observation holds for both companies and knowledge generating institutes actively involved in scientific activities. As such, our findings seem to suggest beneficial effects of scientific capabilities shouldered by a multitude of organizations. In addition, higher numbers of patent activity coincide with higher levels of science intensity pointing out the relevance of science 'proximity' when developing technology in newer, emerging fields. Limitations and directions for further research are discussed.