Be One Step Ahead: Initiatives

ICT of the future

Having started out as a niche discipline, ICT has become a fundamental and integral part of our lives and is now essential in linking the most diverse fields of science and business. This leads to the emergence of new application areas and disciplines at the relevant interfaces. The funding initiative "ICT of the Future" was launched by the Federal Ministry for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology (BMK) in 2012 and offers a range of different programmes. For example the Eu co-funded programme "ECSEL" and the transnational programme "AAL".

Industrie 4.0 Pilot factories

The TU Wien Pilot Factory Industry 4.0 addresses the needs of a broader corporate base and can thus be economically anchored in the long term. The target group are especially small and medium sized companies.

Apart from the existing pilot factory at Vienna's Urban Lakeside Aspern and smartfactory@tugraz, Linz is also getting a pilot factory, in which research will be carried out on new processing techniques. These "demo factories" are lifelike factory models and will help to make new developments ready for the market faster.

Silicon Austria

Graz, Linz and Villach are the locations for the newly established research center - BMK to invest 280 million Euros
Austria is about to get a new world class research center for microelectronics: The aim is to cluster regional competencies in the microelectronic industry and to turn Austria into a world leader in the field of microelectronics - "Microelectronics Made In Austria" should become a well-known brand. The research center is split up among the three Federal States Upper Austria, Styria and Carinthia with the cities of Linz, Graz (HQ) and Villach respectively. All the hubs are dedicated to a specific focus: Villach will be the center of sensors and power electronics, Linz will be focusing on High Frequency and Graz will be the headquarter with emphasis on system integration. The work is about to start still this year, forecasting up to 500 new jobs in the coming years.

Silicon Alps

The Silicon Alps Electronic Cluster is a public-private partnership that brings together Austrian players from industry, science and public authorities to develop and position the electronics and microelectronics sector with a regional focus on the locations Carinthia and Styria. The Silicon Alps cluster regards itself as a long-term strategic alliance and a tool for cooperative, efficient and business-oriented location development.

COMET - Competence Centers for Excellent Technologies

The national programme COMET (Competence Centers for Excellent Technologies) was launched in 2006. The competence centres programmes are internationally recognised as best-practice model and have been among the most successful technology policy initiatives in Austria.
COMET is sponsored by the Ministry for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology (BMK) and the Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs (BMDW), which are following up on the success of their previous competence center programmes.


The Frontrunner funding offers funding to companies with frontrunner-strategies within their fields of R&D to reach or enlarge leading market position (hidden champions). The funding modell is open to all branches of industry, research topics and size of companies or projects.

Big Data

Big Data Europe will undertake the foundational work for enabling European companies to build innovative multilingual products and services based on semantically interoperable, large-scale, multi-lingual data assets and knowledge, available under a variety of licenses and business models.