FFG Support for ICT

In the period 2000 to 2008, the FFG spent over 550 million euro on projects carried out in the field of information and communication technology, which represents a share of around 20 to 25 per cent of all projects (in terms of allocated funding). ICT therefore represents the largest thematic share of FFG funding. The FFG provides a large number of wide-ranging funding programmes in this field.

Projects carried out in the information and communication technology sector are strongly represented in all of the FFG funding programmes: in the generic programmes such as the General Programmes, the Structural Programmes and the European Programmes as well as in the Thematic Programmes. The range extends from low-threshold programmes for career newcomers (such as the “Innovation Cheque” or start-up funding) through to funding for large-scale projects such as headquarter or COMET centres.

Thematic Funding Programmes for ICT Projects

  • ICT of the Future is the funding programme of the Austrian Federal Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology (BMVIT) for the promotion of challenging technology development and innovation in information and communication technology, interlinked with application fields and societal challenges.The programme supports ICT innovation in a comprehensive perspective. It aims to contribute to the goal of the federal government to lead Austria from the group of so-called Innovation Followers to the group of Innovation Leaders – to become one of the most innovative countries within the EU. The Community European Research Area (ERA) provides a frame of reference for this national programme, which will complement over its run-time both existing and new European initiatives within Horizon 2020.
  • The “benefit” programme and the Ambient Assisted Living Joint Programme promote the research and development of products and services aimed at maintaining and improving the quality of life for older people.
  • AT:net supports the market launch of information technology applications and solutions which serve the public interest and are based on broadband technology. 
  • Horizon 2020 provides funding for every stage of the innovation process from basic research to market uptake, in line with the EU's commitments under the "Innovation Union". The ICT sector represents 4.8% of the European economy. It generates 25% of total business expenditure in Research and Development (R&D), and investments in ICT account for 50% of all European productivity growth. EU investments in ICTs increase by about 25% under Horizon 2020 compared to FP7. This EU investment supports the whole chain from basic research to innovation that can deliver new business breakthroughs, often on the basis of emerging technologies. Information and Communication Technologies underpin innovation and competitiveness across private and public sectors and enable scientific progress in all disciplines. Thus in Horizon 2020, ICT-related topics can be found in all priorities, from "Excellence Science" to "Industrial Leadership", to "Societal Challenges".

Support and Services

The FFG also offers a range of services in support of ICT projects, including the international Ideal-ist partner search network and the ICTprofiles database. Additional support is also provided through other FFG services such as the Research Job Exchange and the Enterprise Europe Network.