Technological sovereignty is an essential factor for the resilience of a society. The crises of the recent past made it clear that Europe has some catching up to do in this regard: the Russian war of aggression on Ukraine made it clear that trade relations that have been stable for decades can quickly collapse in the event of a geopolitical conflict. In addition to the energy sector, Europe's dependence on external trading partners is particularly problematic in the area of information technology, as was made clear by the supply bottlenecks during the Covid-19 pandemic - Europe is primarily dependent on the U.S. and China here. Given the possibility of a further tightening of the geopolitical situation, this dependency - similar to Russian gas - could prove fatal.
Europe's technological sovereignty
Spin-offs are a central pillar of a sustainable strategy for greater technological sovereignty. Europe has outstanding universities and cutting-edge research, but this research is often not exploited to the same extent as in the USA, for example. Yet Europe would have the potential to take a leading role in future technologies such as quantum computing, hydrogen, climate technologies or 5G and thus secure its technological sovereignty in these areas. In order to exploit this potential, however, it is necessary to create conditions that promote academic spin-offs and keep successful founders and their spin-offs in Europe.
In Austria, first steps in this direction have already been taken (among others on the initiative of Spin-off Austria). For example, the promotion of academic spin-offs has been included in the performance agreements between the Ministry of Education and universities and will be one of the focal points for the years 2022 to 2024. The task now is to build on this momentum and further develop our spin-off strategy in a sustainable manner.
Spin-off Austria conference will provide food for thought
At the Spin-off Austria conference, international experts will provide food for thought on how to further improve
for a further improvement of the Austrian and European spin-off strategy.
and develop solutions for the most pressing problems.
Among the speakers will be company founders and investors Hermann Hauser (Acorn/ARM, Amadeus Capital Partners), Herbert Gartner (eQventure) Andy Bechtoldsheim (Sun Microsystems, Google) and Jeannette zu Fürstenberg (La Famiglia VC). The policy perspective of the European Union will be represented by high-ranking members of the European Innovation Council (EIC), including Séphane Ouaki and Viorel Peca.
The Spin-off Austria Conference is organized by Hermann Hauser Investment GmbH, I.E.C.T. - Hermann Hauser and eQventure in cooperation with the Austrian Council for Research and Technology Development. The conference is supported by Erste Bank und Sparkasse, FFG, Onsight Ventures and the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber. The technical implementation of the online conference is done by brutkasten.