A whole range of domestic companies involved in manufacturing and automation, especially the electrical and electronics industries, will benefit from the cooperation. The states of Styria and Carinthia, which are shareholders of both JOANNEUM RESEARCH (Styria: 80.75%, Carinthia: 14.25%) and the top research center SAL (10% each), want to further strengthen the business and technology location of Southern Austria, create jobs and attract skilled researchers.

"The cooperation of our two research centers further drives the development of essential future technologies and supports domestic companies in the digital transformation. With targeted investments in research and development and through close coordination of all stakeholders, we will be able to expand our leading international position," emphasizes Barbara Eibinger-Miedl, Styrian Minister of Economic Affairs.

"I am pleased that with this memorandum of understanding, the cooperation between the two federal states of Carinthia and Styria in the field of research and development will become even closer. Together, we are creating a technology hotspot in Southern Austria that is unparalleled internationally. Renowned researchers from all over the world already come here to work on innovations. This gives industry a locational advantage on the global market," explains Carinthia's Provincial Minister for Technology, Deputy Provincial Governor Gaby Schaunig.

"With the establishment of SAL, an essential step has been taken towards the long-term strengthening of the European electronics industry and Austria as a business location, and the course has been set for strengthening European independence in this area. Especially the last years have shown how important this industry is for the functioning of the economy and society. We are looking forward to a fruitful cooperation with the experts of SAL and the joint research and development projects," says Heinz Mayer, Managing Director of JOANNEUM RESEARCH.

"By strengthening our cooperation with JOANNEUM RESEARCH, we can synergistically set up joint research projects in a broader range of topics, which will ultimately benefit the entire research location. SAL has an excellent infrastructure and top competences in the fields of sensor technology and embedded systems, JOANNEUM RESEARCH is excellently equipped with the research units 'Digital' and 'Materials'. I am convinced that this cooperation creates a clear win-win situation," says SAL CEO Gerald Murauer.

Cooperation in materials research and information technology

The Memorandum of Understanding concerns the research areas of materials and information technology and thus two research units each of SAL and JOANNEUM RESEARCH:

  • JOANNEUM RESEARCH conducts research at the Institute for Surface Technologies and Photonics ("MATERIALS") in Weiz, Niklasdorf and Pinkafeld on micro- and nanostructuring technologies, optical technologies as well as laser and plasma technologies, among others, and at the Institute for Information and Communication Technologies ("DIGITAL") in Graz on multisensory systems and artificial intelligence (AI) methods.
  • SAL has an excellent infrastructure in the field of sensor technology at its Villach site and is dedicated, among others, to the design, modeling and co-simulation of MEMS/NEMS components, while a team in Graz at the Embedded Systems research lighthouse is dedicated to topics at the interface between hardware and software, including trustworthy AI.


JOANNEUM RESEARCH is a nationally and internationally successful non-university, technology and application-oriented research company owned by the federal states of Styria (80.75%), Carinthia (14.25%) and Burgenland (5%). Well embedded in the national and international innovation network, the approximately 500 employees have been developing innovations in the three areas of "information and production technologies", "human technology and medicine" and "society and sustainability" for over 50 years. JOANNEUM RESEARCH and its around 20 corporate affiliates support companies and the public sector with ideas, innovative strength and extensive experience in the research sector through technology, method and product development, but also in socio-political issues.

About Silicon Austria Labs

Silicon Austria Labs GmbH (SAL) is Austria's top research center for electronics-based systems - they are the technological backbone of digitalization. At its locations in Graz, Villach and Linz, SAL conducts research on key technologies in the fields of Sensor Systems, Power Electronics, Intelligent Wireless Systems and Embedded Systems. SAL brings together key players from industry and science and thus valuable expertise and know-how, and conducts cooperative, application-oriented research along the value chain. SAL propels idea into innovation - with excellent research and economic benefits. Shareholders are the Republic of Austria (50.1%), the Provinces of Styria and Carinthia (10% each), the Province of Upper Austria (4.95%) and the Association for the Electrical and Electronics Industry (24.95%).