As a political and advisory instrument, the aim of TA is not only a reflective analysis of social changes that result from technological innovations but above all the provision of information and advice to decision-makers. The possible technology-policy actors in the public sector include Parliament, the administration, federations and other public institutions, and the ITA has conducted work for all of these.
As occurred in a number of other European countries, the ITA also worked directly for Parliament in the early days of its existence. The reasons why this institutionalisation of TA at Parliament was not continued are to be found both on the level of actors and financing. Furthermore, there is also the legitimate question of whether Parliament is the "right place" for technology policy discussions and decisions within Austria´s realpolitik structures. There are, however, links to Parliament at personal level, since ITA staff is regularly invited as experts to Parliamentary hearings. Since 2007, these relationships have again been cultivated more intensively. Thus in 2008, an information discussion was held in the National Council concerning the possible parliamentary institutionalisation of TA. In 2009, the ITA had the opportunity to present itself in detail to the Committee for Research, Innovation and Technology. Representatives of all parties welcomed a closer cooperation between Parliament and the ITA. Since 2011 the self-description of the Parliamentary committee of Research, Technology and Innovation includes a direct reference to TA; negotiations regarding a closer relationship between Parliament and ITA are under way.
Otherwise, in accordance with technology policy reality in Austria, the ITA focuses its main attention on those elements of the administration that are in close proximity to the political actors through the provision of advice to various federal ministries and the Council for Research and Technology. Furthermore, ITA addresses at the international level the EU, and in particular the European Commission and, most recently, the EU Parliament within the framework of the European Technology Assessment Group (ETAG).
Chapter Target Groups - all countries
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