Energy R&D Survey 2014: Public expenditure in Austria
Being a member of the International Energy Agency (IEA), Austria is obliged to yearly record all energy related research, development and first-of-its-kind demonstration projects carried out in Austria financed by means of public funds. About 1,100 projects and activities have been registered and analyzed for the year 2014.
In 2014, Austria's public expenditures for energy-related research and development amounted to 143,1 million euros, increasing the expenditures of 2013 by 14.9%.
The research areas of energy efficiency (43,1%), smart grids and storage (24,7%) and renewables (22,7%) define the priorities of the publicly financed energy research within Austria.
The 10 subcategories with the highest expenditures in 2014 were (in million euros):
- Electricity transmission and distribution (21.5)
- Efficient residential and commercial buildings (17.8)
- Communities, smart cities (13.4)
- Photovoltaics (11.5)
- Energy storage (non-transport applications, also excluding hydrogen; 11.5)
- Bioenergy (9.4)
- Hybrid and electric vehicles (8.5)
- Energy efficiency in industry (8.1)
- Solar heating and cooling (5.1)
- Fuel cells (5.1)
About 80% of these expenditures were provided by governmental authorities (federal ministries, federal provinces, funding organizations); the remaining part came from (publicly funded) research institutions and universities provided in equity capital. No third party financing from industry or means from European programs like Horizon 2020 were covered by this survey.
The Climate and Energy Fund spent 45.8 million euros in 2014, which was substantially more than last year's expenditure. The expenditures of the federal ministries, either directly or via programs within their fields of responsibility (excluding the Climate and Energy Fund), totaled up to 36.2 million euros, with the Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy and the Federal Ministry of Transport, Innovation and Technology investing about 95% of that amount.
The total expenditures of the nine federal provinces with Vienna in the lead increased to 11.4 million euros, a plus of 85% in one year. The expenditures of the (non-university) research institutions were 16.8 million euros; about 92% of this sum was invested by the Austrian Institute of Technology - AIT. The universities spent 12 million euros in total with equity capital. Here the Vienna University of Technology had the highest expenditures. The amount of 1.1 million euros was invested by the sector of universities of applied sciences (so called Fachhochschulen or FHs) with equity capital, having their institutional focus primarily on education, not research.
71% of the means were used for applied research, and 17% for experimental development. Expenditures for first-of-its-kind demonstration amounted to 7% in 2014. Basic research represented a small yet very important portion of 5%.