This sector definition includes the subsectors design, architecture and advertising services. In the three most important subsectors of the Austrian creative industry as a whole, advertising and architecture are second and third respectively in terms of size and economic value of the subsectors (see table at chapter 3.5.1.). The overall sector comprises a total of around 17 400 companies, around 50 500 employees and generates sales revenue of around EUR 6.5 million and gross value added of around EUR 2.4 million. The three subsectors have different structural characteristics: in architecture the average size of the company is higher, in advertising there is a higher turnover. By comparison, the design sector is much smaller and has a high proportion of one-person companies. Statistically, the economic importance of the design sector tends to be underestimated, as many designers, especially industrial designers, work in companies that are not categorised in the design sector.
The Vienna Design Week, an international design festival since 2006, offers young designers a platform for the presentation of their projects and has contributed to innovative cooperation between culture, design and business. The event has also contributed to making design an important competition factor in public awareness. The Blickfang International Design Fair, founded in 1993 in Stuttgart, and in the meantime also taking place in Zurich, Basel, Copenhagen and Hamburg, has been held in Vienna since 2004. This event has also essentially contributed to the success and profile of the creative industries and their importance in Austria.
In 2012, Austria’s most important design initiatives jointly founded the open platform AustrianDesignNet, a voluntary association of institutions from the Austrian design and creative industry. The aim is to represent Austrian design together at international events and above all to network and coordinate national and international activities better. The initiative is operated by the following eight institutions: AWS Kreativwirtschaft, Creative Industries Styria, Creative Region Linz & Upper Austria, Designaustria, Designforum Vienna, Kreativzentrum Departure – the creative centre of the Vienna Business Agency, MAK – Austrian Museum for Applied Arts / Contemporary Art and Vienna Design Week.
In the field of architecture, there is a House of Architecture in every Austrian province: it is a non-profit association for the promotion of architecture and quality construction in the field between cultural, social and educational policy as well as general economic conditions. These have joined forces with other interest groups in the field of architecture to form the Architekturstiftung Österreich. In addition to the statutory professional associations and the training centres, the independent architectural initiatives form an important third pillar for safeguarding architecture. The network of architectural initiatives is committed to architectural quality and promotes understanding of contemporary architecture in politics, administration and the public. The aim is to inspire people with enthusiasm for architecture and to make them demanding partners in the design of the built environment. There is also a clear commitment by the government to an architecture that encompasses all Austrian regions. In 2017, the Architecture Reportand the government’s architectural guidelines were published for the third time (see also chapter 2.9.).