AI Mission Austria (AIM AT) Funding Initiative

Important information: The application mode for Principal Investigator Projects (previously called Stand-Alone Projects) will switch from individual funding to funding via research institutions (PROFI, i.e. a switch from §26 to §27 of the Universities Act) starting March 20, 2023. The application process for any Stand-Alone Projects that applicants want to submit under the current provisions (ad personam, §26) must be completed in elane by March 19, 2023.

As a new key technology, artificial intelligence (AI) has enormous potential to significantly change the economy and society. In Austria, for example, AI could double overall economic growth by 2035, and turnover in the AI sector is expected to increase by up to 40% by 2027. To leverage this potential and create added value for Austria as a business and research location, the three research funding agencies aws, FFG, and FWF have launched a joint funding initiative called “AI Mission Austria (AIM AT)”. Through comprehensive funding for basic research, applied research, and business applications, this initiative is making a valuable contribution to creating a sustainable ecosystem around the key technology of artificial intelligence. The initiative is being funded by the Fonds Zukunft Österreich.

Target group 
Qualified researchers from all disciplines who work or would like to work at Austrian research institutions and whose research focuses on technological developments as well as the effects and framework conditions of artificial intelligence.

The main objective of this initiative is to fund excellent basic scientific research in the field of artificial intelligence and to contribute to positioning Austria as a recognised research and innovation location for AI. Funding may be requested for projects with clearly defined objectives and methods, specific limits in terms of duration, and a budget that complies with the requirements of the FWF programmes Stand-Alone Projects (P), ESPRIT (ESP) or Programme for Arts-Based Research (PEEK). 

Applications must address a topic related to the field of artificial intelligence research. The AIM AT funding initiative is interdisciplinary and aims to support basic research in technology and computer sciences, projects in the biomedical, natural, social, and cultural sciences and the humanities, as well as arts-based research. Research questions can address the following topics, for example: 

  • Machine learning, symbolic and logic-based AI, symbolic methods, autonomous systems
  • AI in climate research, biochemistry, or the medical field
  • Highly complex social and ethical aspects of AI as well as the socio-economic and socio-cultural effects of the use of AI
  • Explorations of AI in arts-based research

Requirements, length, and level
Application requirements are analogous to the FWF programmes Stand-Alone Projects (P), ESPRIT (ESP) or Programme for Arts-Based Research (PEEK). The advancement of women and junior researchers is a high priority for the FWF, and these groups are strongly encouraged to apply for funding under the relevant funding instruments.

Additional special features of the call 
The Fonds Zukunft Österreich has provided funding for the call for proposals for this initiative. 

Please see the Supplementary Information (pdf, 98KB) on Submitting Applications for a summary of the special features of the call. In addition to the documents required for submission in the selected programme, the relevance of the submitted proposal to the topic of the funding initiative must be detailed in an additional form in elane.

Submitting the application

  • Start of the call ESPRIT, Stand-Alone-Projects: 3 November 2022
  • Start of the call PEEK: 1 March 2023
  • The application guidelines for Stand-Alone Projects (P), ESPRIT (ESP) or Programme for Arts-Based Research (PEEK) apply; all applications must be submitted online using the FWF's electronic application portal (elane).


  • Funding decision by the FWF Board
  • On an ongoing basis from the start of the application period until the available funds have been exhausted. Once this dedicated funding has been used up, any further applications will be processed and decided upon like regular proposals

Gerit Oberraufner or the scientific project officers in the relevant specialist departments