The State of Innovation in the Danube Valley

Yoram Wijngaarde, Chief Executive Officer & Founder, Dealroom presented The State of Innovation in the Danube Valley at the Danube Tech Summit in Vienna on 12th December 2023. The report showed interesting figures about the venture capital investment in the Danube Valley.

Few experts were asked before the conference to give an input; Barna Kovacs BIOEAST Secretary General provide a summary (with a hyperlink to the document provided in the attachment) summing up the barriers of bioeconomy innovation deployment in the CEE.

The afternoon panel discussion Transforming the Danube Region into the new European innovation hot spot: a turning point for the CEE engaged together policy makers from Austria Martin Kocher, Minister of Labour and Economy, Federal Republic of Austria and Slovakia Vladimír Šimoňák, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Economy of the Slovak Republic with Georg Kopetz, Chief Executive Officer, TTTech and Andreas Treichl, President of the European Alpbach Forum. The discussion was moderated by Led by: Alena Kudzko, GLOBSEC Vice President for Policy and Programming.

Martin Kocher, the Minister of Labour and Economy highlighted the rapid transformation in the EU and the potential for green and digital transformation. Vladimír Šimoňák, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Economy of the Slovak Republic presented the government manifesto of the newly established government and its commitment to reform so the innovations that are being created reach the business sector. Mr Andreas Treichl challenged policy makers by saying that they lack capacity, time and finance for regional cooperation. His intervention inspired a question discussed at the First National Bioeconomy Congress in the Czech Republic – about the importance of a national bioeconomy strategy to boost investment and innovations. While the Minister of Labour and Economy from Austria appraised the common effort of the Austrian universities in a bottom-up approach towards policy makers, the deputy Minister, Ministry of Economy of the Slovak Republic was more skeptical about the need of a strategy to take action. The panel also highlighted the impact of bottom-up activities of Austrian universities that resulted in the endorsement of the national bioeconomy strategy.

BIOEAST Iniative is supporting policy makers to discuss macro regional priorities. The BIOAST SRIA and Foresight are the first strategic documents showing the macro-regional perspective that can help in the improvement of the macro-regional cooperation and collaboration, so to adressed issues discussed in the panel discussion.