Up until 2006, the Foreign Policy Guidelines that underpinned Vienna's international activities drew mainly on research work and assessments by the City Administration.
This Position Paper also takes into consideration the objectives and strategies of important external partners (1) so as to make Vienna's presentation abroad more powerful and help the city pursue its international policy objectives sustainably and consistently.
A. Competition-oriented approach
A holistic perspective on city marketing
1. Vienna's five key strengths in the international competition among cities
1.1. Vienna as a city with top quality of life
The high quality of life in Vienna is the city's quintessential strength – it is a fact that is universally recognised and borne out by the findings of international comparative studies. Contributing factors are strict environmental standards and the high quality of communal and business infrastructure along with policies that promote public safety and social security, including urban planning and design measures such as Vienna's successful and innovative municipal housing programmes.
Suggested unique selling propositions:
"National Park within the city"
"Biosphere Park as Vienna’s green lung"
"Vienna, a city with a modern lifestyle built on the heritage of classical culture"
"Vienna – a metropolis with a reliable, economically and ecologically viable public infrastructure that is legally and socially secured and protects natural resources in the best possible manner"
"Vienna – a city of classical, modern and contemporary architecture"
1.2. Vienna as a centre for tourism and a multi-faceted cultural metropolis
Culture is the theme that still dominates Vienna's international image; outside Austria, the city is seen mainly as a tourist destination with a strong focus on culture, i.e. a broad range of cultural assets and activities packed into a compact urban space. However, the Reed Exhibition Centre also makes Vienna a central location for trade fairs targeting the Central, Eastern and Southeast European regions; thanks to its attractiveness to tourists, its excellent infrastructure and the price level, Vienna is also one of the leading conference venues worldwide.
Suggested unique selling propositions:
"Vienna – Art & Culture meets Shopping & Entertainment"
"Vienna, the capital of music"
"Vienna – a centre for trade shows and conferences"
1 A list of external institutions that contributed to the preparation of this Position Paper by providing expert papers is contained in the Annexe.Objectives and actions:
Making use of Vienna's cultural image – expanding on Vienna's position as a tourist destination and conference venue Vienna's outstanding international image as a centre of culture provides the basis for activities. In this context, it may be useful to continue catering to existing clichés to the extent that they successfully function as parts of the city's traditional image. However, an element of modernity is a necessary complement, as delivered by the Vienna Tourist Board over the last few years. Vienna is home to a lively cultural scene featuring personalities and institutions that are well suited for positioning the city as a young, dynamic (cultural) metropolis. Integrating this young scene into the marketing strategy will give Vienna a "younger" image. Moreover, the timing of international activities of Vienna's cultural institutions and the national cultural institutions that are located in the city should ideally be coordinated to create synergies for the presentation of the city, with cultural institutions being used as mediums for conveying Vienna's message.
Efforts will have to continue in the traditional markets (Germany, Austria, the US, Italy, the UK, Japan, Spain, Switzerland, and France) to achieve further improvements there. Much as yet untapped potential is to be found in Central and Eastern Europe, the Arab countries and China, where the Vienna Tourist Board is aiming at significant growth, targeting some 10 million overnight stays by 2010 (2005: 8.8 million).
In 2005, more than 1 million overnight stays were recorded for the first time in the conference tourism segment. The Vienna Convention Bureau aims at growing conference tourism up to a total market share of 15% of all overnight stays in the city by building on its international successes and establishing a long-term presence in high-potential markets. Among these, Australia and China deserve particular mention. The Vienna Convention Bureau will continue to focus on the acquisition of national, European and international conferences and meetings in the years to come.
1.3. Vienna as a hub for Central European business and finance
Vienna provides excellent access to the countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE); it offers the top-quality infrastructure mentioned above; the business climate is favourable to new establishments, the environment is attractive. Owing in part to its geographical location, the city has become a hub for international goods trade and a sought-after location for business headquarters. (2) Currently, there are some 5,000 companies in Vienna that engage in worldwide exports, contributing EUR 15 billion or 16% to Austria's total export volume. The city has promoted the establishment of several technology clusters that make an important contribution to its profile of strengths. Moreover, the expansion of Austrian banks and insurance companies into Eastern and Southeast Europe, as well as cooperative undertakings which the Vienna Stock Exchange has launched in this region, have turned Vienna into a centre of finance for the CEE region.
Suggested unique selling propositions:
"Vienna – Western Europe at the heart of CEE"
"Vienna – workplace of the region's brightest minds"
"Vienna – at home and still in Western Europe"
"Vienna – the centre of finance for Central, Eastern and Southeast Europe"
"Vienna – the ICT (3) competence centre for Central and Eastern Europe"
"Vienna – a city that combines economic success with social cohesion"
"Vienna's geographical location (proximity to the CEE growth markets) in combination with transport infrastructure (airport hub)"
"Vienna as a business centre (number six in GDP per capita in the EU; high gross value added per capita, strong purchasing power)"
"CEE know-how and network of Vienna's enterprises", "Vienna–Bratislava business region "
(2) More than 300 international companies have chosen Vienna as the location for their European headquarters.
(3) All abbreviations are explained in Annexe 2.
Objectives and actions:
Strengthening Vienna as a business location
The economic success of business enterprises located in Vienna not only creates and secures jobs, it also strengthens local purchasing power and results in an important contribution to tax revenues. The more attractive the city is as a place to work and live in, the more it gains value overall. It is therefore important that big businesses which are already established in the city are motivated to stay here permanently. At the same time, Vienna has to be advertised as a business location in the target markets (4) to attract new enterprises to the city. Highlighting the excellent macro conditions for founders of new businesses, Vienna has to establish itself as the location of choice for companies with a specific regional focus. The Vienna Urban Development Masterplan 2005 has defined a series of "target areas". These are substantial tracts of land that are suitable for use as business premises and internationally marketable. The Vienna Business Agency is to work consistently to promote new business settlements in these target areas, in particular addressing the following groups:
European/EU retail companies (marketing and distribution companies) and medium-sized manufacturing enterprises from Germany;
companies from CEE, Asia and the Middle East in search of suitable locations for production and/or administration within the EU;
companies (especially from the EU, North America and Asia) looking for locations from which to work the CEE region ("insourcing" of CEE value generation);
(mid-size) high-tech startups on their way towards international expansion.
In its international cooperation activities and efforts to attract businesses to Vienna, the city should emulate leading international high-tech hotspots, such as the German city of Aachen and its surrounding region, the Greater London area in the UK, and the Boston Area and North Carolina Research Triangle Park in the US.
Promotion of aggressive international expansion programmes for Viennese businesses to expand and enhance production and trading networks, especially at the SME level (division of labour and penetration/expansion of distribution markets);
political backing and "city diplomacy" to support joint ventures in regions that have not yet reached economic stability, such as the Balkans (for the role of the City of Vienna's Representative Offices, see the section on "Primary Regions");
presentation of the economic clout and innovative power of Vienna's businesses and their products and services in foreign markets;
positioning Vienna as a leading tourist and shopping destination among visitors/consumers from Central and Eastern Europe;
intensifying the presentations and negotiations that were started several years ago in the USA; working the US market with a clearly defined focus on specific segments;
improvement of the transport infrastructure that links Vienna to its neighbouring countries, making Vienna a major Central European node within the Trans-European Networks in the medium term.
(4) See section A.2
1.4. Vienna as a centre of education competence and a location for science and research
Education, research and innovation are classical investments in the future and the drivers of dynamic labour markets. It is relatively easy for potential investors to make a comparison concerning the cost of doing business, administrative and fiscal burdens. Efficient education, research and technology policies will therefore be decisive factors for Vienna's future as an industrial location.
Vienna's education policy initiatives often have model character, in particular for the CEE and SEE regions. With a large number of successfully completed projects, Vienna has acquired a rich fund of know-how and expertise in the implementation of international education/training projects.
Vienna looks back on a long and distinguished history as a centre of higher learning. Research and teaching at Vienna University – one of the oldest universities in the German-speaking region of Europe – have traditionally been embedded in a strong international nexus. The combination of academic and private-sector research creates a fruitful climate for private investors. Research in Vienna is particularly strong in the areas of medicine and biotechnology, physics and mathematics, but also in the humanities and social studies, including contemporary history, social policy and macroeconomics.
Suggested unique selling propositions:
"Vienna – education and science hub between East and West"
"Vienna – the place of choice for education and health"
"R&D centre Vienna"
Objectives and actions:
Promoting Vienna as a city of education and science – better positioning of Vienna as an R&D centre
Improving Vienna's position as a city of knowledge has been declared a political priority. New initiatives are to be launched and existing activities expanded in the following areas:
Vienna as a centre of education competence;
Vienna as a place of international communication;
Vienna as a provider of high educational quality;
Vienna as a centre for inter-regional cooperation in education;
Vienna as a business location that provides an attractive education/training infrastructure.
Any type of cross-border cooperation, be it the further development of school partnerships or encounters among professional educators, helps to grow the skills and expertise of all those involved in the cooperative venture; in addition, cross-border cooperation projects in education contribute to Vienna's positive image in the partner regions which may in turn be helpful in establishing cooperation at the economic level.
To help position Vienna as a place of excellence in education, study courses and programmes in specific areas (e.g. creative industries, biotechnology/pharma) should be actively marketed. Vienna may also build on its long and distinguished tradition in the humanities and social sciences. Specific educational offers may be developed in the field of infrastructure services (e.g. by establishing a vocational university for infrastructure studies, a multi-utility academy or similar institution). This educational focus could be complemented by specialised infrastructure conferences and expert meetings.
The international activities should also provide a platform from which Vienna-based researchers can launch cooperation projects. Science and research are to be advertised as factors that provide competitive advantages. Additional measures are required to acquaint young researchers abroad with attractive working opportunities in Vienna.
The objective is to make Vienna the location of choice for specialised R&D activities in the cluster industries, targeting those CEE enterprises that want to or are forced to relocate part of their value chain in the R&D field to Western Europe or the US. The conditions for this are favourable, with established clusters, availability of relevant know-how, access to EU projects, etc.
Attracting research projects and research centres and keeping them in the city is an essential aspect of this endeavour. In this context, it is necessary that –
ZIT and WWTF take the required steps to identify enterprises in the cluster industries and find out about their R&D focus;
targeted actions are taken to attract research projects: preparation of specific offers and presentation of these project offers at meetings and workshops with co-funding from the City of Vienna (travel expenses, possibly start-up finance).
International presentations of Vienna as an R&D location should make increased use of testimonials by high-tech companies that are already established in the city. In this context, it is suggested that the International Business Service of the VBA be involved in these activities.
1.5. Vienna as a city of excellence in medicine
Major contributing factors to Vienna’s proverbial quality of life are its health and social support systems, which provide services at a remarkable level of excellence. Preventive medicine and health promotion, top-quality diagnostics and treatments are the cornerstones of the city's health services, which combine advanced medical expertise and skills with broad coverage at a high level of quality.
Suggested unique sellingpropositions: "Vienna – top of the class in education and health!"
"Vienna – meeting point of the best medical experts worldwide"
"Vienna – a city of international medicine"
Objectives and actions:
Promote Vienna as a centre of top medical performance
In this context, Vienna's health system is to be used as an image factor. Under the motto "Top-quality medicine in Vienna", the work done within this system – from basic to clinical to application-oriented research, all of which are characterised by scientific innovation, interdisciplinary cooperation and an international orientation – should be emphasised more strongly, both in the city's communication efforts and in the context of presentations to foreign audiences. The mid-term objective is for Vienna to attain the position of medical competence centre for Central Europe and, in a number of selected disciplines, for all of Europe.
2. Target regions/markets of the City of Vienna for the period 2007-2011; opportunities and challenges in selected target markets(5)
Primary regions These are the target regions/markets that were named most often by the institutions and departments of the City Administration involved in the preparation of this Position Paper. Vienna should have a continuous and sustainable presence in these primary regions.
Firstly, these include the "old" EU member states (with a special focus on Germany, Italy and the UK) and Switzerland. The ("old") EU members are especially important for Vienna with respect to political activities (6), tourism and business relations (export markets, companies with CEE expansion strategies, sources of foreign direct investment). The (country-)specific foci have to be defined together with the line departments and the strategic partners.
Additionally, Vienna should also seek to enhance its position in the European Research Area.
Secondly, Central, Eastern and Southeast Europe (in particular Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, (southern) Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovakia, Slovenia, the Czech Republic, Turkey, the Ukraine and Hungary) are also regarded as primary regions.
Given their geographical and cultural proximity, the countries of Central and Eastern Europe, especially those which have just recently joined the European Union, are target markets for the near future.
Cooperation with Austria's direct neighbours should be given special priority in this context.
The CEE and SEE regions are rapidly growing markets that provide opportunities for export-oriented businesses based in Vienna. Nearly 30% of Vienna's total exports already find their buyers in these regions. Where foreign direct investment is concerned, potential interest in Vienna is particularly strong in those countries which do not (yet) belong to the EU and are seeking to establish a foothold within the European Economic Area.
Given the rising prosperity of tourists from CEE and SEE, these regions should be regarded as high-potential growth markets right on Vienna's doorstep. Likewise, the increasingly international outlook of CEE companies promises development potential in conference tourism.
Other opportunities for Vienna:
supporting urban development, with sales opportunities in the field of urban technologies;
tapping into the CEE and SEE skilled labour resources through a controlled influx in selected sectors (e.g. health care and personal assistance, creative industries, biotechnology);
meeting the demand for high-quality health and education services for the regions’ increasingly prosperous middle classes.
In several CEE capitals, there is a strong sense of competition for leadership in Central Europe – Vienna is regarded as a partner on an equal footing, but not as the leading regional centre.
With respect to the Slovakian capital Bratislava, strategies for cross-border transport and regional planning have to be implemented rapidly; cooperative efforts towards a CENTROPE core area should be enhanced. Joint presentations of the two cities in the context of international activities would be useful.
Know-how transfers should not result in Vienna's ideas being realised abroad with local resources only. Vienna has a legitimate interest in deriving benefits from the effects of know-how transfer.
With respect to the labour market, the biggest challenge is to integrate incoming workers in Vienna – i.e. in the local labour market – and to prevent crowding-out of domestic workers.
In the field of education and research, the main challenge lies in ensuring the availability of the necessary resources.
The Representative Offices which the City of Vienna has established in the CEE and SEE countries should create synergies through closer cooperation with other networks that are in place in the region, especially those of the Federal Economic Chamber (local Austrian Trade Commissions), the Austrian National Tourist Office, Austrian Airlines and the association KulturKontakt Austria (local culture and education officials); conversely, all units of the City Administration should make full use of the contractual services provided by the Representative Offices.
Given the special relationships between Vienna and the cities in the CEE and SEE regions, continuity of contacts is an important goal. This implies that joint (project) activities should ideally take place every year, but at least biennially.
Japan and the emerging markets of China (the Beijing region, the Pearl River delta with Hong Kong and the Yangtse delta with Shanghai) and India (Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi, Chennai).
The emerging markets of (Southeast) Asia are characterised by –
economic growth rates that are markedly higher than those of (Western) European nations;
economic expansion, including to Europe;
growing purchasing power;
enormous catch-up potential in infrastructure development;
(partly) strong interest in Viennese culture;
growing research potential.
5 This section describes the opportunities and challenges in selected primary regions.
6 See section B.
For Vienna, there are a variety of opportunities waiting to be exploited:
taking advantage of Asian companies’ drive to expand into Europe (e.g. the IT, biotechnology/pharmaceutical and automotive industries) by offering attractive start-up packages for company establishments and/or promoting Vienna as a location for CEE headquarters;
addressing the development backlog in the field of environmental technologies and urban infrastructure;
tapping the rising prosperity of consumers in growth markets by promoting exports by Vienna-based producers;
promoting tourism by catering to the active interest in Vienna and the city's cultural offer in Asian countries;
enhancing cooperation in science and research.
Key challenges include
defining priority regions (considering the size of these markets);
an in-depth analysis of "niche” areas in which Vienna is likely to prevail in competition with the major economic powers;
ensuring that Vienna successfully defends its competitive edge as a manufacturing base against Asian countries (qualifications and productivity vs. transport).
United States of America (New York, Chicago – Michigan Region, San Francisco) US industrial output has been on an almost constant rise since April 2003 and it is the services sector that has exhibited the largest growth potential in this market.
Starting in 1996 and supported by the Special Envoy for International Economic Affairs, Prof. Walter Nettig, the City of Vienna has successfully stepped up efforts to enhance cooperation with the “big players" in the American market. Presentations and negotiations have been going on for years and are now to be further intensified, targeting specific market segments.
The United States are also of interest with a view to foreign direct investments in Vienna. Large American corporations such as Coca-Cola, McDonalds, Hewlett Packard and Western Union already have their European headquarters in Vienna. US companies make up the third-largest group of foreign investors in Vienna. But there is definitely additional potential for attracting foreign investors to Vienna. Further promising initiatives to expand cooperation with US enterprises are cooperation agreements between companies in specific sectors, as for example the collaboration recently initiated by the Vienna Chamber of Commerce in New York in the field of creative industries.
Arab Region (Gulf States) The boom in the oil-rich Gulf States caused Austrian exports to the entire Near and Middle Eastern region to rise by 36.4% to a total of EUR 585 million in the first four months of 2006. Deliveries to the United Arab Emirates, as a case in point, surged 55.8% year on year as compared with 12.2% growth in Austrian exports worldwide.
Most of the Austrian enterprises engaged in trade with the Arab Region are domiciled in Vienna. Hence, Vienna’s comparatively high number of know-how carriers with experience in trade with these countries represents a potential that can be used to support other Vienna-based companies in gaining a foothold in these markets. EU negotiations currently under way with the Gulf States for the creation of a free trade area are likely to contribute to easing market entry for new players from Vienna’s business community.
A number of Gulf States are currently making efforts to diversify their economies, expand tourism and improve their infrastructure. Their huge economic growth has been fuelled by high revenues from oil exports and their forceful growth policies. This setting characterised by high liquidity coupled with high demand for know-how has opened up a broad range of business opportunities for Vienna-based companies, both in the oil and gas sector and within the framework of large-scale recreation, hotel and infrastructure projects in this region.
Other features to be promoted in these countries naturally include Vienna’s attractiveness as a financial centre, a tourist destination and a centre for top-quality medicine, but also its qualities as a source of tourism expertise.
Other regions The following regions were mentioned several times by the institutions and organisational units of the City Administration involved in the preparation of this paper, but none of them attracted a massive vote in favour. However, Vienna should at least aim to maintain an occasional presence in these regions in the future:
United States of America (Las Vegas metropolitan area, Atlanta)
3. Strategic areas of development in proactive city marketing from the medium-term perspective
Three strategic development fields have to be differentiated in terms of time horizon:
2007-2009: In this first phase Vienna is to leverage to optimum effect the existing strengths in target markets/regions on which the city's efforts have been focussed up to now.
2010-2011: New strengths are to be brought into the limelight; in addition new target markets/regions could be defined if expedient.
2012-2016: New strengths will be leveraged and new target markets/regions addressed.
B. Cooperative approach
regarding the political role of the City of Vienna
Generally, cooperative action with a defined regional emphasis should be planned with a view to focusing synergies on target areas in which the city concurrently pursues competition-oriented activities. EU and other subsidies should be claimed to the extent possible for project development and implementation. In addition, the City Administration should continue to provide aid and support where required in concrete cases.
Last but not least, Vienna is to ensure that the city is represented by prominent political personalities in strategically important international activities.
The five key strengths of Vienna on the international stage of metropolitan areas
Vienna as a leading European metropolis:
Vienna is not only an economic hub, but also a European political centre. Notably over the past few years, Vienna has established itself as a Central European competence centre, which has earned the City a prominent but still expandable role in the European political debate.
By efficiently leveraging its strengths Vienna should be able to position itself as the leading metropolis in Central and Eastern Europe by 2016. Strengthening the city’s position within the framework of the CENTROPE Region must be the priority goal of Vienna’s regional activities. The central objective of these efforts is to position Vienna as role model and know-how provider for peer CEE cities in matters related to innovative city administration and to develop its role as a powerful political lobbying partner in Central and Southeast Europe and in dealings with the European Union. A vital concern within the framework of CENTROPE is to improve environmental standards and hence the quality of life. Further crucial interests for Vienna and the CENTROPE Region as a whole include the development of region-wide employment strategies, issues like security, migration, social standards, standards of citizen services, the labour market, traffic and transport, municipal autonomy, environmental standards, cross-border cooperation between the major nature conservation areas, organic agriculture as a perspective for the future in the wider environs of the Danube capitals of Vienna, Bratislava and Budapest, and cross-border cooperation in the field of environmental education.
Vienna as an international centre:
Vienna still enjoys a reputation as open, neutral ground and the city has acquired an important and acknowledged function as a venue for international encounter and dialogue. What’s more, Vienna also plays an important role in different EU policy sectors (e.g. CEE competence centre for INTERREG, seat of the EU anti-racism body EUMC). Vienna hosts the headquarters of numerous international organisations (UNO, OSCE, OPEC, etc.) and NGOs, and is to enhance the services offered to these institutions to ensure their continued presence. In addition, Vienna could emphasise its reputation as a “city of international dialogue” and a venue of encounter for conflict settlement by promoting the city’s relations with the international organisations already domiciled in Vienna, and in particular with the representations of the European Commission and the European Parliament. Moreover, suitable advertising initiatives are to be launched to attract further international organisations to set up offices in Vienna.
Vienna as a cosmopolitan, gender-conscious international city at the heart of Europe:
A high share of Vienna's population has a migration background. The city’s integration and diversity policy is a European role model in terms of its multi-faceted approach to integration and diversity. This strength represents an important international policy asset. It could be used as a political export on the European scene by initiating an intensive communication process with a view to gaining a leading role in the European debate on urban integration policy.
Further matters of eminent importance to Vienna include the issue of equal opportunities for men and women and full gender equality in all spheres of life. Closing the income gap, achieving parity of men and women in the labour market and establishing true compatibility between work and family life are further issues of primary concern which should be regularly addressed in the international dialogue with target markets/regions.
Vienna as a centre of competence for infrastructure and environmental technologies:
Vienna boasts excellent know-how in the fields of infrastructure and application of environmental technologies such as traffic and transport, waste management and energy, as well as in social integration. In order to assert its influence on the EU municipal policy agenda (above all with regard to public services) the city is required to enter into strategic partnerships and alliances with other EU capitals or within the framework of city networks, both on a project or ad hoc basis, and to assume a proactive or leading role in multilateral EU networks and the corresponding EU bodies (notably the CoR). Key challenges are to ensure that the services of general interest are maintained and to develop efficient strategies to counter the push for liberalisation in the field of public services. International expert congresses, for instance, would be an ideal forum for finding allies in these efforts, which should focus on discussing, developing and finally implementing measures designed to forward the interests of the City of Vienna in Brussels.
Vienna as a city with citizen-friendly institutions:
With its e-government solutions introduced over the past few years, Vienna has successfully taken up the challenge of eliminating all red tape and made the transition from public authority to service provider. Vienna should make a special effort to highlight the experiences and standards it has developed in this field at the international level with a view to exporting this know-how.
C. Evaluation – Indicators – Reporting
The success of the implementation of these strategic objectives has to be evaluated on a continuous basis, which requires a priori definition of thematic foci as well as target regions. Apart from a qualitative and output-oriented description of measures taken, future annual reviews should therefore – as far as possible - also include documentation based on quantitative (performance) indicators.
However, in this context allowance needs to be made for the fact that it is frequently quite difficult to determine and differentiate in quantitatively measurable terms the extent to which success is attributable to the city’s international policy and marketing efforts. What’s more, the impact of successful policy-making often only becomes perceptible after a considerable time lag.
The following list of indicators arranged by policy field should therefore be taken as suggestions for discussion and more detailed consideration.
General policy Vienna’s degree of internationalisation
Frequency of contacts and number of networks with local city administrations
Documentaries on Vienna broadcast by international private and public TV stations
D. Vision for 2016
By the year 2016 Vienna has established itself – in close cooperation with partner cities and regions within CENTROPE – as a highly professional and internationally acknowledged centre of research and innovation, a city that stands out for its high and multi-faceted quality of life, environmentally sensitive mobility within the region and a highly diversified and dynamic economy and cultural life. In the 2016 global rankings Vienna continues to feature in the top category in terms of quality of life, and as a “safe city” it is still considered a byword for individual and public safety and social security.
More specifically, Vienna's development from now until 2016 will focus on eight key fields of action:
Within CENTROPE, the region strategically located at the heart of Europe, Vienna is the capital with the skills to orchestrate collaboration among the ensemble of cities in the region, giving them a voice that is both sought and well heard at the European and international level.
Economy, technology and research
Vienna is the economic, research and technological centre of Central and Eastern Europe and is perceived as a leading European economic centre, at least within the circle of primary target regions (7). Vienna is an acknowledged hub of the international merchandise trade and plays a leading role in the international services trade. A very high number of Vienna-based enterprises have benefited from the city’s international policy and consider the city’s efforts as a factor that has a direct or indirect impact on their commercial success. CENTROPE, the region at the heart of Europe – with Vienna and Bratislava as its geographic and economic backbone and Brno and Györ gathering momentum as up-and-coming conurbations – is viewed as a role model for the development of a strong cross-border economic region. The region catches the eye of international investors as a uniform economic area with conspicuous competitive advantages. Overall, the CENTROPE region has positioned itself as an “intelligent” location for automotive, medical, bio- and gene technology as well as materials research.
Vienna is a dynamic and successful member of the premier league in European city tourism and prevails against many competitors thanks to the city’s blend of attractions, its success in congress business and its systematic marketing efforts. In addition, Vienna has gained an international reputation as a know-how carrier and provider of expertise in the field of tourism.
Arts and culture
Vienna continues to be positioned as a leading centre of arts and culture, a mainspring of contemporary art and a globally uncontested venue for music.
Vienna is a globally acknowledged medical competence centre (in research and treatment) that has earned a high international reputation ("Europe’s Mayo Clinic") and assumes a leading role within the EU, both in terms of research and medical care ("top-quality medicine for everyone").
Vienna is a globally acknowledged centre of excellence in environmental matters, a role model in the fields of protecting natural resources and minimising its industries’ detrimental environmental impacts by adopting an integrated and forward-looking approach to environmental protection. Within the Danube region Vienna leads the way in environmental policy matters.
Security and safety
In 2016, Vienna continues to be a metropolis where people can “live in safety”. International cooperation agreements make an important contribution to promoting individual and public safety and social security.
7 See section A.2.
Vienna is a city that stands out for its exemplary approach to integrating newcomers and migrants by pursuing a targeted immigration policy and intelligent and diversified strategies adjusted to the needs of the different target groups.
Vienna is setting international standards in the creation of equal opportunities. The city’s objective is to achieve full gender equality in all spheres of life. Closing the income gap, achieving parity of men and women in the labour market and establishing true compatibility between work and family life are issues of primary concern to be regularly addressed in the international dialogue with target markets/regions.
Annexe 1 List of external institutions that contributed to the preparation of this Position Paper by providing expert papers.
departure wirtschaft, kunst und kultur gmbh
Europaforum Wien (Centre for Urban Dialogue and European Policy)