The Thematic Platform "European Challenges" brings together the findings from past and current research by WIFO on key challenges at the European level. The aim of these studies is to understand the effects and interactions of European integration on the economy, the public sector and society in the EU member countries. This allows drawing conclusions for European and Austrian policy initiatives and thus present recommendations to overcoming economic challenges.
WIFO provides advice to a number of Directorates-General of the European Commission and the European Parliament, conducts regular studies for European institutions and stakeholders and is active in European research framework programmes. This gives the Institute broad expertise in the analysis and evaluation of measures adopted at the European level as well as in comparative country studies. WIFO is also involved in a variety of European research networks.
Numerous WIFO studies analyse EU policy measures and their effects at the European and the national level. The research questions are derived from the central challenges of the EU, such as the further development of the Monetary Union, the future design of the EU budget or the effects of "Brexit". All WIFO Research Groups consider the importance of the European level for the Austrian economy and policy making. The research topics include implications for macroeconomic development, the European semester, trade and neighbourhood policies, labour market reforms, entrepreneurial innovation, regional development, aspects of budget and tax policy as well as environmental and climate change issues. In addition, WIFO evaluates funding instruments in the areas of European research, regional, agricultural, social and investment policy.