February 13, 2020
EU Commissioner Mariya Gabriel and Federal Minister Heinz Fassmann visiting IST Austria
The high-ranking guests were impressed by the development of the institute for basic science
This morning EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth Mariya Gabriel and Federal Minister for Education, Science and Research Heinz Fassmann visited the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) in Klosterneuburg for an exchange on the European research area and its importance for innovation in Austria.
Together with IST Austria President Thomas A. Henzinger the guests discussed the importance of the European Research Councils (ERC) and its competitive research funding as well as the role of basic science within the framework program „Horizon Europe“. During the campus tour they met with Bernd Bickel, Anna Kicheva and Christoph Lampert – three out of the 36 ERC grantees at IST Austria in total. The meeting ended with a short visit at the technology park IST Park adjacent to the IST Austria campus.
“IST Austria has the highest success rate at the ERC among institutions with more than 30 ERC grants. We can be really proud of this!“ says Science Minister Heinz Fassmann. EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth Mariya Gabriel stated impressed: “IST Austria is a prime example for an Austrian and a European success story of science. Behind it are committed people and teams who want to make a difference for the benefit of all of us. We are 7% of the world population, but we are responsible for 20% of innovations and more than a third of research publications. EU research funding plays a decisive role in further strengthening this position, and Austria knows how to seize its opportunities: Austria’s participation in the current research program Horizon 2020 has increased by 55 % compared to the previous program. Now it is important to ensure sufficient funds for the future – for the benefit of our citizens. To this end I am counting on all Member States. An investment in research is an investment in the future. Research enables us to provide answers to Europe’s current challenges in the field of climate change, digitization and demography”. IST Austria President Thomas A. Henzinger: “Basic research is a global competition that Europe doesn’t have to shy away from. We are happy that IST Austria can be considered world-class already after such a short time.“