Research, Technology and Innovation Policy in Austria

With the publication of the RTI strategy "Becoming an innovation leader. Realising potentials, increasing dynamics, creating the future", the federal government has completed an intense discussion and analysis process regarding the RTI strategy for the period lasting until 2020.

The origins of this process were:

  • the Austrian Research Dialogue (2007-2008), a broad-based, Austria-wide discussion and consultation process
  • the evaluation of the Austrian research funding system (system evaluation) in 2008 and 2009
  • the recommendations of the committee for research and technology development (Strategy 2020) for the further development of the Austrian research and innovation system

The strategy defines five closely related pillars as the basis for operational measures:

  • Education system
  • Basic research and research infrastructure
  • Innovation and operations research
  • Governance of the research and innovation system
  • Financing system

Based on the federal government's RTI strategy, the Federal Ministry for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology (BMK) is focusing on themes that will be implemented according to the following principles:

  • Further development of the funding system to go from a number of programmes to transparent, clearly structured topic management that ensures the equal treatment of participants.
  • Clear division of tasks between strategic requirements of the BMK and operational responsibility of the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (Forschungsförderungsgesellschaft FFG), which implements RTI funding for the BMK.
  • New forms of collaboration between the ministry's RTI and infrastructure segments; strategic coordination with other ministries through shared interfaces in order to account for the significance of research, technology and innovation as an interdisciplinary matter.
  • International integration of the BMK RTI policy into the initiatives of the EU and ESA.
  • Focus on effectiveness that is ensured by the accompanying monitoring and effectiveness controlling as well as the evaluation of financing by the BMK.
  • Service agreements as the basis for the financing of research institutions such as the AIT.

Within the Austrian federal government, the BMK is responsible for applied research and technology development. Companies are important partners in this, and the aim is to encourage them to make higher RTI investments and to cooperate with research institutions. The BMK measures for this purpose are mainly aimed at contributing to research, technology and innovation in order to find solutions to social challenges.