It is based on a diversified range of funding instruments, encompassing a research premium, tax advantages and direct funding granted by three institutions:
- Whoever carries out research in Austria pays lower taxes: this applies to all companies in Austria. Companies are entitled to claim a 12 percent research premium paid in cash on in-house research expenditures as well as contract research.
- The Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG) promotes R&D by companies along the entire innovation chain via research grants. Funding volume in 2014: EUR 460 million.
- The Austrian Science Fund (FWF) is the country’s central body for the promotion of basic research. Approved funding volume in 2014: EUR 211 million.
- Austria Wirtschaftsservice GmbH (AWS) is the funding bank for corporate business development. Total funding in 2014: EUR 740 million.
- The funding initiative COMET (Competence Centers for Excellent Technologies) promotes the cooperation between companies and scientific facilities within the context of a jointly defined but high-level research program. Up until now 49 competence centers on three different levels have been established. A total of EUR 1.5 billion will be invested in the period 2006 to 2019.
- The Christian Doppler Research Association sets up public sector-financed research units at Austrian universities for a fixed period of time. Scientific researchers work together with corporate partners to find a solution to their research questions. At present (2016), 73 Christian Doppler laboratories are in operation.
The Wittgenstein Prize, featuring annual prize money of up to EUR 1.5 million, is also worthy of mention. It is the most highly endowed science award of the Republic of Austria. Information on the latest award winner is available on the FWF Website.