Energy R&D: Public Expenditure in Austria 2010

Membership of the International Energy Agency (IEA) obligates Austria to report on an annual basis all publicly financed energy research and development projects. This survey fulfils not only international requirements but also shows the importance of energy research in Austria and helps to set and test policy goals as well as to recognize respective trends at an early stage.

Content Description

Austria's public expenditure for energy related research and development amounted to 120,979,645 Euro in 2010. This was an increase of 31% (28,711,531 Euro) compared to 2009. The highest proportion of this expenditure (84.3%) [2009: 85.1%] was provided by the government (federal, regional, funding organisations), the remaining part was from research institutions and universities.

The expenditure of the federal ministries, either directly or via programmes within their field of responsibility (excluding the Climate and Energy Funds), totalled to 28,316,279 Euro [2009: 27,016,311 Euro], with the Federal Ministry of Transport, Innovation and Technology investing about three quarters. Especially projects generated via the "Neue Energien 2020" ("New Energies 2020") contributed to the fact that the Climate and Energy Fund for 2010 was the sampling unit with - by far - the highest expenditures (51,210,247 Euro) [2009: 30,836,148 Euro].

In 2010, the Research Promotion Fund (FFG) processed 86.7 Million Euro [2009: 62.7 Million Euro], the majority of transactions were related to programmes run on behalf of the federal ministries and the Climate and Energy Fund. The basic programmes of the Research Promotion Fund increased their funding for energy-related R&D to 13,062,679 Euro in 2010 [2009: 9,593,460 Euro]. The expenditure of the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) for basic research within the energy sector, 2,082,295 Euro, was clearly higher than in the previous years [2009: 1,201,718 Euro].

The total expenditure of the federal provinces amounted to 7,345,314 Euro [2009: 8,342,794 Euro]. The highest share had Styria with 35.1% [2009: 4.1%], followed by Tyrol with 32.5% [2009: 13.4%].

The universities spent 8,422,741 Euro [2009: 7,096,878 Euro] in total. As in the previous years, the technical universities in Vienna and Graz had the highest expenditures. The expenditure of the (non-university) research institutions was 9,354,177 Euro [2009: 4,996,606 Euro], almost three quarters of this sum was invested by the AIT (Austrian Institute of Technology). The amount of 1,185,912 Euro was invested by Fachhochschulen (FH) (universities of applied sciences) with equity capital [2009: 1,649,172 Euro].

Overtaking the sector "renewable energy carriers" with 27.8% [2009: 35.3%], 46% of the expenditure were allotted to the sector "energy efficiency" [2009: 40.6%]. Both areas continue to clearly define the priorities for the publicly financed energy research within Austria, particularly transport with some 26 million Euro, R&D topics in relation to energy-efficient buildings (planning, materials, heating, ventilation, air-conditioning, lighting etc.) with an expenditure of around 20 million Euro, transmission and storage (esp. smart grids) with some 17 million Euro and solar energy and bioenergy with about 14 million Euro each.

More than three quarters of the funding were used for applied research, 16% for experimental development and 7% for basic research. Some 1,100 energy research projects and activities were registered and analysed for the year 2010 [2009: about 900].

Project Partners

DI Andreas Indinger
√Ėsterreichische Energieagentur - Austrian Energy Agency
Phone: +43 (1) 586 15 24 - 111