Austria is a country of research and innovation with great innovative capacity, ranking among the leading countries in Europe with another record research spending ratio of 3.19 per cent in 2018.
Austria has set itself the ambitious goal of increasing the research spending ratio to over 3.7 per cent of GDP. Throughout 2012-2016, the R&D expenditure to GDP ratio in Austria was higher than in Germany and most other EU Member States.
A major task of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Economy is to provide funding for areas that are specifically in need of such support. These funding programmes are devised and managed in close cooperation with other ministries, the Austrian Council for Research and Technology Development as well as other funding entities. In addition, they are subject to periodic evaluation by independent experts to better focus the programmes on their relevant target groups.
Framework for RTI in Austria
A successful research and technology policy consists not only of funding measures. Rather, it requires a number of accompanying actions to inform potential beneficiaries and help them implement innovative ideas, while supporting policy-makers in efforts to improve the RTI framework.
Innovation and Technology Policy
The competitive strength of companies and thus their potential for employment are a central subject in both Austria and Europe as a whole. These factors greatly depend on the quality of activities in research, technological development and innovation. Consequently, it is important for the Federal Ministry of Labour and Economy to further enhance investment in research, development and innovation and to establish the appropriate framework for strengthening Austrian businesses, in particular small- and medium-sized companies.
For this purpose, a coordinated portfolio of programmes, initiatives and networks has been made available.
Austrian Research and Technology Report 2022
The Austrian Research and Technology Report (RTR) pursuant to Article 8 of the Research Organisation Act (FOG) is prepared annually on behalf of the ministries responsible for research and technology, namely the Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (BMBWF), the Federal Ministry for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology (BMK), and the Federal Ministry of Labour and Economy (BMAW). Based on current data, it presents an outline of Austria's position in research, technology and innovation policy.
The Report offers an overview of the ongoing implementation of the RTI Strategy 2030, the RTI Pact 2021-23 and RTI-relevant sub-strategies.Statistics Austria's global estimate of R&D expenditure reaffirms the important role of public research funding in times of crisis. The contribution of the business sector decreased noticeably in the pandemic year 2020, but has been rising again since then. In 2022, almost two-thirds of total research expenditure in Austria (€ 9.36 billion) can be allocated to the business sector.
In addition to the performance in the European research programme Horizon Europe and Austria's position in the context of international RTI indicators, the report highlights forward-looking topics such as the support of research personnel from career entry to excellence, quantum research, the circular economy and artificial intelligence.
A core chapter addresses the monitoring of the ten central research and research funding institutions, pursuant to Article 8 of the Research Financing Act (FoFinaG).
The Report is complemented by a "Factsheet", which provides a compact overview of the main findings on six pages.