OECD Economic Surveys: Austria

English
Frequency
Every 18 months
ISSN: 
1999-0189 (online)
ISSN: 
1995-3127 (print)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/19990189
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OECD’s periodic surveys of the Austrian economy. Each edition surveys the major challenges faced by the country, evaluates the short-term outlook, and makes specific policy recommendations. Special chapters take a more detailed look at specific challenges. Extensive statistical information is included in charts and graphs.

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OECD Economic Surveys: Austria 2017

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Author(s):
OECD
17 July 2017
Pages:
144
ISBN:
9789264278769 (PDF) ; 9789264278776 (EPUB) ;9789264278752(print)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/eco_surveys-aut-2017-en

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Austria is a stable and wealthy economy and growth has picked up following the 2016 tax reform and the recovery of export demand. Employment has expanded, driven by rising participation of women and elderly and by immigration, although hours worked per worker have declined. Nonetheless, like in most OECD countries, productivity has slowed. Boosting potential growth requires reforms in a broad range of areas.

Austria’s transition to a digital economy and society is progressing but is slower than in the most advanced economies. A whole-of-government approach should help embrace change and facilitate the flourishing of innovative businesses, work practices and lifestyles throughout Austria. Digitalisation will redesign production processes and alter the relationships between work and leisure, capital and labour, the rich and the poor, the skilled and the unskilled. Under the aegis of the “Digital Roadmap” they issued earlier in 2017, policy makers will need to ensure equality of opportunities in the race with technology, and find the appropriate level of redistribution of the gains associated with digitalisation to foster social cohesion.

SPECIAL FEATURES: DIFFUSING DIGITAL INNOVATIONS; LABOUR MARKETS IN THE DIGITAL ERA

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  • Basic statistics of Austria, 2016

    This Survey is published on the responsibility of the Economic and Development Review Committee (EDRC) of the OECD, which is charged with the examination of the economic situation of member countries.The economic situation and policies of Austria were reviewed by the Committee on 19 June 2017. The draft report was then revised in the light of the discussions and given final approval as the agreed report of the whole Committee on 28 June 2017.The Secretariat’s draft report was prepared for the Committee by Rauf Gönenç and Volker Ziemann, with help from Vincenzo Spiezia (STI), under the supervision of Vincent Koen. Kamran Kazemzadeh (Ministry of Finance) and Michael Kraft (Federal Chancellery), seconded to the OECD Secretariat, provided very valuable inputs. Research assistance was provided by Béatrice Guérard and secretarial assistance by Sisse Nielsen and Mercedes Burgos. This Survey is published under the responsibility of the Secretary-General of the OECD.The previous Survey of Austria was issued in July 2015.Information about the latest as well as previous Surveys and more information about how Surveys are prepared is available at www.oecd.org/eco/surveys.

  • Executive summary

    OECD Economic Outlook 101 database.

  • Assessment and recommendations
  • Progress in structural reform

    Past recommendations

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    • Austria's digital transition: The diffusion challenge

      Austria’s transition to a digital economy and society is slower than in other high-income small open European economies. The rate and pace of utilisation of eight main ICT applications shows that Austrian firms follow peer country counterparts with a gap, which has widened in most areas in recent years. Two dynamics drive digital transitions and Austria has room for progress in both of them. First, the potential for digitalisation in all firms, and especially in the smaller ones (where gaps are largest) should be freed-up by upgrading the full range of ICT-generic, ICT-specific and ICT‐complementary skills. Second, Austria needs to make its business environment more conducive to firm entry and exit. The rate of entry of new firms and their growth are crucial for the diffusion of new business models and ICT innovations but fall behind peer countries. The adoption of ICT innovations by households also follows a staggered path: young and highly educated Austrians adopt ICT applications in similar ways to their counterparts in peer countries, while middle and older age cohorts display noticeable gaps. This calls for policies to help lagging groups become more acquainted with innovations. A whole-of-government approach, including large-scale utilisation of e-government applications in enterprises and households, should help to embrace change and facilitate the flourishing of innovative businesses, work practices and lifestyles throughout Austria.

    • Inclusive labour markets in the digital era

      Digitalisation is one of the megatrends affecting societies and labour markets, alongside demographic change and globalisation. The fourth industrial revolution will redesign production processes and alter the relationships between work and leisure, capital and labour, the rich and the poor, the skilled and the unskilled. The degree of disruption induced by the technological transformation ahead largely depends on the policy framework. Digitalisation can lead to anything between soaring inequalities and widespread improvements of living and working conditions. Two main questions arise for policy makers: how to ensure equality of opportunities in the race with technology and how to find the appropriate level of redistribution of the gains associated with digitalisation to preserve social cohesion. Against this backdrop, this chapter will analyse the technology-induced transformation of labour markets, argue for a new social contract and discuss how the provision and use of skills need to adapt to the digital work environment.

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