2 min

Digitalisation Hub for Companies

Renewed Funding for Digital Innovation Hub Lower Austria/Vienna/Burgenland

Digitalisation Hub for Companies
Copyright: Petra Fischer

More and more Austrian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) require knowledge on how to tackle the challenges of digitalisation. Nevertheless, they remain hesitant to launch their own digital innovation projects. The Digital Innovation Hub Lower Austria/Vienna/Burgenland, in short: DIHOST, has supported companies in their digital transformation for four years. Now, the successful programme was extended for yet another four years. 

Accelerating Digital Transformation

The DIHOST consortium, which spans several provinces, comprises six research and development organisations in Lower Austria, Vienna, and Burgenland. Together, they developed a comprehensive service programme to increase the transformational competencies and speed of small and medium-sized enterprises in Austria’s eastern regions with regard to digital innovation – with remarkable success.

“DIHOST has successfully contributed to the development of low-threshold structures and formats enabling small and medium-sized enterprises to take successful steps in the field of digital innovation and transformation. So far, around 3,200 SMEs in Austria’s eastern regions could benefit from various support services that remain to be high in demand among companies. I am happy that this important future-oriented initiative will be extended”, says Bernhard Heinreichsberger, member of the provincial parliament, who represented the Provincial Governor Johanna Mikl-Leitner in the opening of yesterday’s kick-off event in ecoplus House of Digitalization in Tulln.

Implementing Projects on Ten Technical Key Areas

The hub focuses on sustainable digital innovation and several technological key areas such as artificial intelligence, additive manufacturing, blockchain & IT security, the internet of things (IoT), BIM (Building Information Modeling), or augmented & virtual reality. It offers a range of services dedicated to providing information, raising awareness, promoting further education, and fostering digital innovations.

Participating companies can use the services to launch their digital transformation and implement their own digital innovation projects in partnership with other SMEs and under the guidance of the DIHOST partners.

Using Synergies

The virtual House of Digitalization of ecoplus Digital GmbH, a subsidiary of ecoplus – the Business Agency of Lower Austria –, is a central networking instrument for DIHOST. Petra Patzelt of ecoplus: “With the House of Digitalization, we have created a central hub for the big future topic of digitalisation. Our main target group are the country’s entrepreneurs. It is our mission to foster, accelerate and support their digital transformation in the best possible way. DIHOST plays a major role in this endeavour.”

The regional chambers of commerce (WKO) of Lower Austria, Vienna, Burgenland, and Upper Austria support DIHOST by using their communication channels to facilitate a comprehensive outreach to regional SMEs.

DIHOST‘s partner institutions include the St. Pölten UAS as the consortium lead, ecoplus Digital, the Austrian Blockchain Center, FOTEC / University of Applied Sciences Wiener Neustadt, Forschung Burgenland, and IMC Krems University of Applied Sciences. Network partners include WKO Lower Austria, WKO Vienna, WKO Burgenland, and the House of Digitalization.

Valuable Consultation for yet another Four Years

The project is funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG), the Federal Ministry of Labour and Economy within the framework of the programme "Digital Innovation Hubs in Austria", and the province of Lower Austria. The Federal Ministry of Labour has recently extended the hub, thereby securing funding for yet another four years.

“I am happy that we are able to offer the knowledge and expertise we have gained from research to smaller and medium-sized companies for yet another four years. The funding allows for the launch and implementation of diverse digitalisation projects with great importance to the business location”, says Franz Fidler, Head of the St. Pölten UAS’ Faculty of Engineering and Business and head of the DIHOST project consortium.

You want to know more? Feel free to ask!
FH-Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr. Fidler Franz

FH-Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr. Franz Fidler

Head of Faculty of Engineering and Business Academic Director Digital Design (MA) Academic Director Digital Media Management* (MA) Academic Director Digital Media Production (MA) Academic Director Interactive Technologies (MA) Member Extended University Leadership Course Leader Digital Future Management (certif.) Member of the UAS Board from 2023 to 2026 Department of Media and Digital Technologies
Fischer Petra, BA MA

Petra Fischer , BA MA

Section Head Research Coordination and Innovation in a Regional Environment
Institut Institute of Creative\Media/Technologies
Department of Media and Digital Technologies
Mag. Hammer Mark

Mag. Mark Hammer

Section Head Press
Marketing and Communications