Provinces and Municipalities
Sustainable Development Assistance is a key issue for the State of Burgenland to eradicate poverty and hunger around the globe. The State of Burgenland makes all reasonable efforts within its possibilities to foster projects by volunteers in less developed countries. Projects are supported if their overhead costs are low and if they strive forward to satisfy physiological and safety needs of people in less developed countries.
For the Federal State of Carinthia, it is important that the basis for project is the partnership between Carinthian institutions with an active group in a development country. Funded cooperation projects should promote awareness in the development region as well as in Carinthia. They are also conceived as help towards self-help and take special account of the situation of women and youth. In 1991, the Carinthian Regional Assembly decided to appoint an Advisory Board for Development Policy for this. Twice a year as of 1993, this board discusses projects for promoting development cooperation financed from federal state funds.
Development policy in the Federal State of Lower Austria is geared to the international Millennium Development Goals and the objectives of Austrian Development Cooperation (ADC). Lower Austrian development cooperation thus focuses on development education and public relations, the promotion of fair trade, the support of project partnerships and the subvention of the implementation of projects by non-governmental organisations and in case of need international disaster relief.
Since Lower Austria joined the Climate Alliance in 1993 and the Land and Soil Alliance in 2003 Lower Austria has been engaged in defending the interests of the indigenous partners on the Upper Rio Negro and project partners in Senegal. Furthermore it actively assists its municipalities in implementing the tasks of the Alliances. Since 2002, the developmental activities of the Federal State of Lower Austria have centred on promoting fair trade and introducing related products in its municipalities and enterprises and as of 2007 it pursues the development objectives of the Global Marshall Plan.
For over 50 years, the Federal State of Upper Austria has been involved in development cooperation to improve the local conditions of life for people in other nations and communicate these activities to the public. Every year, Upper Austrian development cooperation supports 100 projects run by organisations, associations and development aid workers in the state. The campaign, Fair Play, supports innovative ideas in Upper Austrian schools. Once or twice a year, the Federal State of Upper Austria holds a development-policy dialogue forum to present the work and projects to a broad public. Together with the Diocese of Linz, the federal state also awards the Eduard Ploier Prize for Development Cooperation and the Eduard Ploier Prize for Journalism every two years.
Since 2012, Development Cooperation Week (EZA Week) has taken place at the beginning of November. This week, fair trade products from development cooperation countries are being brought to the forefront and offered for sale in over 580 food retail stores and 12 world stores throughout Upper Austria. The colorful supporting program, for example with film evenings, exhibitions, cooking shows and workshops, contributes to actively raising awareness in the area of "Fair Trade".
Major goals of Salzburg's development cooperation are the promotion of civil society for democratic, ecological and conflict-mitigating development and regional cooperation in the economic and social sector. Development cooperation in Salzburg focuses on the San Vicente region in El Salvador and Singida in Tanzania with 20 per cent of all development assistance earmarked for each in the federal state budget in agreement with the partner organisations in these countries. Another 20 per cent of total funds is allocated for education and information at home. On the recommendation of the Advisory Board for Development Policy, the Salzburg Regional Assembly decided on providing active support for the Climate Alliance, the Global Marshall Plan Initiative, the Millennium Development Goals and Fair Trade.
Since 1981, Styrian development cooperation has supported development cooperation projects in countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Oceania as well as development education measures in Styria. The guiding principle for all activities in this area are currently the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which were adopted as part of the Agenda 2030 on 25 September 2015.
In the area of project funding, it should be emphasized that the projects are carried out according to the principles of partnership and sustainability. The projects are selected according to criterias based on the recommendation of the Advisory Board for Development Cooperation, whereby there are no territorial restrictions. Styrian development cooperation sees its task to maintain the large number and diversity of groups active in the development cooperation sector, networking them and supporting them in their mostly voluntary work. Every year around EUR 350,000 are available to support Styrian projects in development cooperation and raising awareness of development policy in Styria. This means that around 40 projects with a total volume of more than EUR 1 million euros can be realized.
In the area of development policy educational work in Styria, the state of Styria has also been supporting the implementation of workshops and educational offers in school and extracurricular areas for many years. In order to further raise awareness of global issues among future generations, the "FairStyria education offensive for global responsibility" was launched from 2022 to 2024. It consists of three pillars:
- The educational catalog for global responsibility imparts knowledge on global topics through workshops;
- The school competition "FairYoungStyria Prize for Global Learning", where young people are encouraged to implement their own ideas in form of projects;
- The network for global learning strengthens cooperation for teachers and deepens their knowledge through train-the-trainer measures on global learning.
The educational catalog offers low-threshold access to topics of global learning to all educational institutions in Styria (elementary education - upper secondary level as well as extracurricular youth work). This annual workshop was designed together with 14 Styrian educational partners and is provided with a yearly budget of EUR 60,000.
The Federal State of Tyrol supports projects that contribute to improving the economic, social and cultural conditions of particularly underprivileged people in partner countries. Its basic goals are to reduce absolute poverty, improve educational infrastructure and medical care, ensure peace and good governance, protect the environment, promote global, equitable and sustainable economic development and create income opportunities as help towards self-help. Since women are agents of sustainable reforms in the countries of the South, their empowerment is another major goal of Tyrolean development cooperation. A second priority is development education work, where Tyrol promotes projects by non-governmental organisations and also holds the annual Tyrol Development Day with various cooperation partners to highlight current development-policy issues.
Vienna helps non-governmental organisations to carry out development projects in Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe. Project themes are based on the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Assistance focuses on education, health and gender equality. In addition, a three-year lead-project is funded. Besides promoting development cooperation projects, Vienna also provides partner-organizations in Eastern Europe, mostly in Ukraine, with humanitarian items like medical equipment. It also holds the annual Development Policy Conference in Vienna City Hall, which addresses both experts and the Viennese public alike. The City of Vienna also provides international relief in the event of disaster. As of 2017, the Municipal Department 27 for European Affairs (Administrative Group for International Affairs) is responsible for Vienna's development cooperation and humanitarian aid.
The Federal State of Vorarlberg provides funding for development aid projects that aim to sustainably improve the living conditions and long-term perspectives of people in countries of the Global South. The projects have to be based on the 17 SDGs and to enable people in the Global South to change their living conditions through their own efforts. The focus country of Vorarlberg's development cooperation since 2018 has been Burkina Faso. A vocational training project in the sector of renewable energy is implemented together with the Austrian Development Agency (ADA). The Federal State of Vorarlberg also supports knowledge sharing and awareness raising re development policies / theories and best practices through information campaigns, discussion events, lectures or seminars in Vorarlberg.
Approximately 1 million euros are made available per year and are allocated through several funding channels (major projects, small projects, duplication of donations through small initiatives, humanitarian aid, development education and information work).
In order to ensure that development cooperation has a broad basis in the state, Vorarlberg recognises the central role of local initiatives as actors in development cooperation and humanitarian aid. Transparency is ensured by publishing all projects in a project map on the website.
Austria's municipalities maintain cross-border partnerships to learn more about partner municipalities from other countries with similar concerns and to exchange experience. This tradition already goes back decades in Austria. Municipal and town twinning arrangements have also been promoted by the European Union since 1989. Most partnerships are forged with municipalities in the EU/Europe. Several hundred Austrian municipalities now maintain a partnership with counterparts in other countries.
The Austrian Association of Cities and Towns is the first association of local authorities in Europe to have set up an office in Brussels (August 1994), which is connected, physically and organisationally, with Austria's diplomatic representation at the European Union. The Austrian Association of Cities and Towns is therefore in a position, on the basis of a constitutional regulation (Art. 23 c & d B-VG, BGBl. 1013/1994), to take part in the information and decision-making process both on the domestic and the European level.
Representatives of the Austrian Association of Cities and Towns participate both in the meetings of the EU's Committee of Regions and the meetings of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe (The Congress) at the Council of Europe.
The Austrian Association of Cities and Towns is a member of the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) and thus also of the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG).