Let's play the Viennese future

ViennaUp proves its high brand. Vienna also looks great at the conference. It's good to look here at the turn of May and June to have a "fresh update" of everything that is happening in the technological world. ViennaUP'23 events happen literally everywhere: in the biggest & most important museums, the Hofburg Palace, universities, cafes, creative / coworking / public spaces...

Opublikowano:21 KWI, Piątek

Feel the spring. Vienna in April smells amazing. Back in December, I drank mulled red wine at the snow-covered Christmas stands on Karlsplatz. And now I'm back in the capital of Austria to breathe the warmer air. And watch how the classically beautiful fabric of the city mixes with its future version.

For me, Vienna is a place that perfectly predicts the world a few steps ahead. But he can also take care of the achievements of the past. Adapt old times to new digital signs. This year it includes artificial intelligence, ChatGPT, Metaversum. And what will be the "in line with the trend" in 12 months?

But Vienna also knows how to come full circle. Back to the roots. By investing in greenery, healthy air, sun. Taking care of interpersonal relations and the comfort of each person. After all, it is still "one of the world's most liveable cities" according to the prestigious ranking of "The Economist".

Programming the future

I'm sitting on one of the benches by the Danube, near the KunstHaus Wien. I'm breathing. First of all, I want to be well prepared. A year ago, the enormity of the attractions of the ViennaUP startup and technology conference was a very positive surprise for me. I took part in a fantastic program. Crème de la crème of the latest phenomena on the hi-tech scene, digital business models + topics signed as eco, climate, green, sustainable, blockchain or female tech-entrepreneurship.

Chronologically / thematically / topographically, the program was arranged so that everyone could squeeze as much juice out of Vienna as possible. Like a ripe orange. ViennaUP was happening in co-work offices (by water and fruit), lofts (by tea), urban outdoors (by a glass of wine), and even Viennese cafes (by coffee), called on this occasion "the oldest co-workers in the world".

Several thousand innovators, startuppers, entrepreneurs, tech-enthusiasts, journalists and opinion leaders came to the capital of Austria. And our Re:view / thereview.pl team. We shot the film "Strauss's Dancing Technologies" here.

Thank you for watching it.

This time ViennaUP promises to be even more impressive. It will last as many as 9 warm days at the turn of May and June. The program is saturated with so many activities and initiatives that the first glance at the "Viennese lineup" makes you ask yourself "how will I manage it all?". Well, it's not easy...

But what is important, I have the impression that each subsequent edition of ViennaUP evolves in a more interesting direction than the previous one. The organizers keep what turned out to be a hit in previous editions. They also add new bricks so as not to rest on their laurels. They want to test new solutions and propose bold actions. And at the same time, they offer what works perfectly on such occasions: a combination of positive slack with attractively presented knowledge and substantive content.

Personally, I'm very happy that the Viennese conference continues the great idea of arranging the noble, dignified cafes of Vienna for contemporary "coworking spaces". I love these places! This time, it will also be spaces where experts and investors will meet startup founders during the "ViennaUP Coffee House Sessions". Sessions will take place every day of the conference (check the event pages for details). As in cafes from 100 years ago, you'll be able to meet interesting people from the industry, ask for advice, discuss your business model or just talk over coffee. It promises to be great, after all, cafes are the "export goods" of Vienna!

On the first day, on Tuesday (30.05), program points dedicated strictly to startups will start: "The Essentials of Startup Fundraising" workshops, "Investors Lunch - Female Edition" dedicated to women, where investors from all over Europe + female Business Angels from Austria will meet, and "Startup World Cup Austria", hosted by Pegasus Tech Ventures (the world's largest startup presentation competition, with over 70 countries participating every year).

This time the competition will reach Austria, ahead of ViennaUp presenting itself at events in Innsbruck, Linz and Graz. We'll also learn more about social companies from Vienna during the evening event "Social Entrepreneurship in Vienna: Driving Change and Creating Meaningful Impact".

The next day (May 31) will start with an investor breakfast (registration is required). The first highlight of the day will kick off at the traditional Viennese "Frühstück": the Connect Day, which lasts until midnight. The main goal of the event is to connect startups with recognized companies and investors, networking with recognized, innovative companies (corporations, SMEs) and investors.

It is here, during the all-day program, that we will feel the essence of ViennaUP the most. After all, in order to get to know each other and inspire each other, Vienna, as a tech-hub, convenes audiences from all over the world.

The second, spectacular event on Wednesday (lasting for two days, until Thursday 01.06) is "Creative Days Vienna", a flagship initiative of the Vienna Business Agency. The organizers will gather creative minds from around the world: curators, researchers, artists, technologists and experts. Together we will explore how technology is shaping the future of cultural experiences such as architecture, design, film, games, fashion, music and visual arts. We'll also find out how their work affects the current technological and social changes, creative industries and everyday life in the city.

I know, the circumstances for such thoughts may be too romantic. Danubian bench, lazy river current, spring trees. But I'm convinced somewhere inside that initiatives such as "Creative Days" place Vienna on the top shelf of the world's leading cities. They create urban communities that, thanks to scientific debate, creativity of activists, and future-oriented content, are able to think ahead / cross-sectionally / outside the box. Thanks to this, they can analyze reality in terms of rapidly changing trends. Forecast and chart the trails of the most prolific visionaries.

How many DAYS you in Vienna?

Let's get back to the program: Wednesday (May 31) is also InnoDays, an opportunity for companies to meet talents. Together, they will create innovative solutions for 48 hours. And it will happen in the company of students who will be specially involved in this event by Viennese universities, e.g. WU Vienna, TU Vienna and OST. The intensive day will end with "Let im Pitch" for startups and SMEs, branded by the recognized CONDA platform. Short speech, questions from the audience, quick investment from 100 euros. And then networking with cold drinks and snacks.

On Thursday and Friday (01 and 02.06) we will be enchanted by Impact Days. A prestigious event whose importance is emphasized by its location: the proud and fashionable spaces of the Hofburg Palace for centuries. Billed as "the leading conference in Central Europe", it has a bold intention to challenge the foundations of the current economic and financial model. The slogan "Where courage meets cooperation" sounds puzzling. But don't turbulent times now make us ask even the most unusual questions? I'll check.

Another interesting item on the agenda of ViennaUP this day (June 01) is the "Manufacturing Day". From yet another angle, it intends to bring together the environment of startups, key industrial players, investors and experts in the field of global production. This is the first novelty in this year's program, so strongly focused on the production industry. I wish I had time, because the Tech-Job Fair will be held at the same time, where Austrian companies will be looking for fresh graduates and talents from around the world.

Digital desserts after dinner of the future

(Almost) for dessert, an afternoon/evening surprise in the form of "GINspiration". An event focused strictly on connecting international startups with the Austrian innovation ecosystem. In the maze of representatives of corporations, young businesses, investors, accelerators, researchers and public agencies, we will witness short, funny panels, conversations and networking contacts. And all this with a spontaneous "accompaniment" of snacks and drinks.

The dessert will be "Networking party. Calm/Storm Ventures Portfolio Day", hosted by the most active investor in the area of digital health in Europe. It has 60 startups in its portfolio and will offer accredited guests an evening full of attractions, music and a relaxed atmosphere.

"Startup Live ViennaUP'23" will start the Friday (02.06) points of the ViennaUP program, although after the previous days full of attractions, I'll probably need some rest and relaxation. However, if I were tempted and - most importantly - led a startup, I'd find another form of initiating contacts between the originators of innovative business and investors with capital.

However, I'll definitely step on the "CultTech Accelerator Demo Day", advertised as "the first program in history devoted exclusively to technological innovation in the cultural sector". Hmm, sounds very interesting. Especially that typical workshop things happened earlier and the Demo Day serves to present them to a wider audience, in the form of ready-made solutions.

You can? You can!

At the same time, so that no one knows peace during these Viennese days, the two-day (02-03.06) "AI for Sustainability Hackathon '23" will start. Organized by the great community of Sustainista GmbH, the programming race aims to solve sustainability issues by applying the latest AI technologies. Interdisciplinary teams will present their achievements at the very end of the 24-hour work. Judging by the experience from last year, it will be an inspiring proposition. Especially since some of the solutions from 2022 (the topic was blockhain) have already entered the implementation phase.

Friday night in Vienna will be dominated by "Pitch night", another joint initiative of EU-Startups and Vienna Business Agency. This time, only creators of promising start-ups and investors at an early stage of development are invited. There will be a chance to go out on the outdoor stage (hopefully it won't rain) and present your company. Participation in Pitch Night is free, but you must apply for one of the 100 limited tickets.

The highlight of Saturday's (03.06) program is "Maker Faire Vienna" for me. It promises to be spectacular, because for 8 hours, about 900 hobbyists, tinkerers and inventors are to present their unusual ideas and projects. In particular, those that can overcome, among others, are promoted. climate crisis and promote circular economies. But no idea will close the door. Sounds brave? Definitely. But this is Vienna, after all, and here they like to break the mold.

Saturday afternoon is also another interesting event. This time, under the name "CityRiddler Challenge", there are... riddles during city trips around the secret nooks and crannies of the capital. We will visit e.g. the headquarters of the freemasons in Vienna, or we will take a look at the history of the street of blood...

Ball into the future

However, everything fades with the highlight of the program: the evening event Fri. "THE FUTURE BALL - RETURNS". It is even difficult to describe what this "ball of the future" will be like. According to the announcement, it will be a cross between a fashionable event and an exhibition of installations, mapping, light animations, performances by actors and dancers, 3D fashion shows and digital art presentations. wow! Under the motto "MakeTomorrowNow", the Future Ball is to get us into - and I quote - a night of the avant-garde experience of the future. Seven floors, two dance floors, a stage with shows. Importantly, there is a "futuristic dress code"...

On Monday and Tuesday (04 and 05.06) ViennaUP will focus on more workshop proposals. Among them, e.g. "UpSkilling Night: Job vs. Career". Those present at the meeting will talk about how technology will completely change the labor market and how to accurately assess the directions of the digital revolution. There will also be other events for entrepreneurial women and - for the first time - "HEALTH INNOVATION SUMMIT VIENNA - Digital Health - Vision And Reality".

The last three days (05, 06 and 07.06) are events related more to the area of technology in cities focused around the Smart City SuMMit program. Plus many other events complementing the extensive program of ViennaUP. Among them, even events happening in the Metaverse (sic!) as well as a multitude of social and entertainment initiatives accompanying the conference.

It's going to be hot in here in a few weeks, I think. But not only because the city will enjoy the warm air and the greenery will be greener. Mainly because during these 9 days Vienna will become the capital of innovation, technology and startups all over Europe. It will also strongly mark its growing position in the world as a technological hub and a place to run an effective business.

We'll talk about all this at the next ViennaUP. Ending the day either at one of the evening-night parties, or with a glass of Austrian wine at Homebase at Karlsplatz. This central place will be both an information point and a space for exchanging ideas. And all this under the figure of a horse - a symbol of the Viennese view of the rapidly changing world around.

I go there. I'll join them. Are you coming with me?


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Let's play the Viennese future

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