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EIT Culture & Creativity: Great success for Austria's creative industries

We are very excited to become part of Europe's largest innovation ecosystem - the European Institute of Innovation and Technology. By bringing together cultural and creative organisations from business, higher education institutions and research centres in a pan-European innovation ecosystem, EIT Culture & Creativity will deliver innovative solutions that help Europe's economy become stronger and more resilient.

As the EIT's ninth innovation community, EIT Culture and Creativity will educate the future businesses of the creative sector, drive new ventures and business models, and deliver innovative solutions to the challenges facing our economy and society.

We are very pleased: Kreativwirtschaft Austria together with JKU Linz and Ars Electronica are lead partners in the winning consortium for the EIT Culture & Creativity! The newly created EIT Culture & Creativity connects leading institutions from business, industry, innovation, art and culture, education and research in Europe. We, Kreativwirtschaft Austria, have been intensively involved in the preparation of the application over the past years and are pleased that one of six centres for the new European innovation network for the creative sector will now be established in Vienna!

The EIT's funding from the Horizon Europe Programme is intended to realise trend-setting initiatives, innovation projects and educational programmes and to get stones rolling. The European Commission sees the creative sector, arts, culture and the creative industries as driving forces in tackling current challenges and shaping a sustainable Europe.

"With the EIT Culture & Creativity, we will create an open innovation community: open to businesses, artists, freelancers, social innovators and cultural practitioners. Innovation and change are possible when all actors - large and small, for-profit and non-profit - meet at eye level in collaborative spaces to tackle urgent societal challenges," says Mariana Kühnel, Deputy Secretary General of the WKÖ. "Innovations are of strategic importance for Austria as a business location and an essential lever to make domestic SMEs fit for the future".

With the JKU, the KAT of the WKÖ and Ars Electronica, Austria has a strong voice in the consortium and pursues the mission of consolidating the competitiveness of the European cultural and creative sector and the European cultural and creative industries (CCSI) and strengthening their role as drivers of prosperity for Europe. "It is impossible to imagine the Austrian innovation system without the creative industries; they act as catalysts and drivers of innovation in all sectors. This has been built up over many years in terms of economic policy and laid down in the 'Creative Industries Strategy for Austria' of the Federal Ministry for Digitalisation and Economy (BMDW) in 2016. The strong Austrian participation in the EIT Culture and Creativity is a result and success of this long-standing Austrian commitment to the sector," discusses Christopher Lindinger, Vice Rector of JKU and Chairman of the BMDW Creative Industries Advisory Board.


A co-location centre based in Vienna

"EIT Culture & Creativity, headquartered in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, will establish more than six subsidiaries, so-called co-location centres. These regional centres will address the needs of local and regional ecosystems and provide relevant services tailored to the respective ecosystems and different stakeholders of students, start-ups, venture capital investors and policy makers for the creative sector. In addition to Amsterdam, Barcelona, Bologna, Helsinki, Kosice, a location of the EIT Culture and Creativity will be established in Vienna, for which Kreativwirtschaft Austria will act as host in the start-up phase," says Gerin Trautenberger, chairman of KAT, which is itself an implementation partner of the BMDW Creative Industries Strategy. As a creative hotspot, the CLC (Co-Location Centre) is to establish a regional hub for South Eastern Europe and the Alpine region and further develop the Austrian Creative Industries Strategy on a European level. The Vienna Business Agency is leading the project on behalf of the City of Vienna. It is making its entire know-how and network available in order to put the new creative cluster in Vienna on the best possible footing right from the start. A broad network of creative industry stakeholders, universities of applied sciences and universities, in particular the University of Applied Arts in close cooperation with the JKU, has already expressed interest in increasingly linking the regional ecosystems with the European ones and in becoming involved as a regional network around the CLC.


Setting priorities in the sense of the BMDW Creative Industries Strategy for Austria

Austria will also set thematic priorities for this European network. For example, issues surrounding innovation in higher education and the bridging of art and science as drivers of innovation are to be focused on, and the crossover effects that emanate from the creative industries for the economy and society are to be used specifically for the development of innovations. The growing network with countless renowned partners offers the ideal framework to initiate effective changes. One focus is clearly on higher education and research, another on exploiting the innovation performance of the creative industries in the sense of the Austrian Creative Industries Strategy.


Factsheet EIT Culture & Creativity


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