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Meetings Calendar 2006
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Firmly Positioned in European Research

 

As a key instrument for the development of the European Research Area, the EU Research Framework Programmes have in the past made an important contribution to the internationalisation of Austrian research, the transfer of knowledge and the opening up of new markets. Austria’s accession to the European Community in 1995 sparked a dramatic increase in the country’s level of participation. Scientists in Austria were working on 1,444 projects within the Fourth EC Research Framework Programme that was running at that time. In the Fifth Research Framework Programme (1998 – 2002) there were just under 2,000 Austrian participations in some 1,380 EU projects. Over 260 of these projects were co-ordinated by Austrian organisations.

The Sixth Research Framework Programme, which is funded with a total of EUR 19.2 billion and will run until the end of 2006, is also proving very successful. Just over halfway through the Sixth Research Framework Programme, Austrian researchers are involved in 15.6 percent of all successful project proposals, i.e. a total of 945. Most of Austria’s receipts come from the two programmes IST (Information Society Technologies) and Genomics and Biotechnology for Health.

Austrian scientists are working with particular success in the areas of energy, space and hydrogen technology, and also in the policy-oriented ERA-NET programme. Aside from research institutes and universities, small and medium-sized enterprises (defined in Austria as those with fewer than 250 employees) are also successfully engaged in research. Austria also has a higher than average SME participation rate in the Sixth Research Framework Programme of 15 percent.

Austrian researchers have also adjusted well to the new instruments. Fifty percent of all Networks of Excellence and one in three Integrated Projects include participants from Austria. The country also plays a successful role in managing EU projects, providing just over three percent of all co-ordinators. Austrian research institutes manage some 140 projects, 57 of which are specific targeted-research projects, 16 integrated projects and three Networks of Excellence.

Austria is also highly active in the ERA-NETs, which aim at the joint implementation and opening of national and regional research activities. Sixteen bodies, mainly government ministries, promotion funds and funding agencies as well as university and non-university research institutes are working in a total of 37 ERA-NETs on various themes. Four ERA-NETS are co-ordinated by Austrian institutions.

Date: 30.12.2005