Deeping collaboration on novel biomolecular electronics based on "smart" nanomaterials

Zentrum für Soziale Innovation (ZSI)


The Vienna based Zentrum für Soziale Innovation (ZSI) is a scientific institute that is pioneering social innovation since its establishment in 1990. As an independent private non-profit institute ZSI provides social value concerning work and equal opportunities, research policy and development, and technology and knowledge. In these topical areas ZSI acts globally by deployment of trans-disciplinary research, education, advisory services and co-ordination of networks.
Since its beginning, ZSI is a strong and well received partner in steadily expanding international networks participating in competitive Calls for Proposals and Calls for Tender published by public authorities on national, European and international levels. Scientific expertise of the 55+ employees encompasses social innovation, social entrepreneurship, governance and partnerships in several policy issues including labour market and innovation
policy. The institute analyses and supports the European innovation system and dynamics RTDI cooperation and internationalisation. It also often acts as partner for impact management and analysis and dissemination.
ZSI is a self-contained, politically independent scientific institution, asserting leadership in Europe to advance social innovation. The ZSI bridges knowledge generation and knowledge application processes by socio-scientific research, education, advisory and networking services to reduce the gap between social needs and potentials of the knowledge based information society.
The institute is also proud of its wide networks and activities with its Eastern European and Ukrainian partners in particular. The department “Research Policy and Development” coordinated three key projects to advance the RTDI system of Ukraine:
• BILAT-UKR (FP7, 09/2008 - 02/2012),
• BILAT UKR*AINA (FP7, 09/2012 - 06/2015),
• RI-LINKS2UA (Horizon 2020, 02/2016 - 01/2019),
Moreover, ZSI is currently partner in an ongoing Twinning project with Ukraine, and leads the work packages on “Improving BIP funding and innovation capacity” and “Communication/Dissemination/Exploitation”
• NEUROTWIN - Pan-European twinning to re-establish world-level Neuroscience Centre in Kiev (Horizon 2020, 08/2019 – 08/2022),

Principal Investigators

Gorazd Weiss Gorazd  A. WEISS works as a Senior expert and Head of the Unit "Research Policy and Development" at the Centre for Social Innovation (ZSI), Austria. His key competencies include research on RTDI policies, sustainable development, RRI and Open Science, social entrepreneurship as well as the coordination and management of international RTDI cooperation projects. Since 2010, Gorazd has conducted dozens of trainings, workshops, info sessions and summer schools on the following topics: successful proposal writing for researchers, responsible research and innovation for different target groups (e.g. policy makers, researchers, Higher Education Institutions, Horizon 2020 National Contact Points, Civil Society Organizations (NGOs) and SMEs). Gorazd has, and continues to be involved in many RTDI projects around the world, from the European Union, Eastern Partnership (EaP) and Western Balkan countries, to Central Asia, Brazil, India, and the Russian Federation. Between 2008 and 2019 he was also involved in the organisation of several scientific events (i.e. workshops, focus groups, international conferences) for researchers and policy makers, on topics such as sustainable development, energy, climate change, migration, and NCP systems, etc.). Between 2005 and 2020 he was involved in more than 30 international RTDI projects funded by European Commission (FP5, FP6, FP7, H2020, EuropeAid, Interreg), other international (e.g. UNESCO, UNIDO) and national funded projects as researcher, senior research project manager, senior expert or Coordinator.
Brugner Philipp BRUGNER is Project Manager and R&I policy expert at the Centre for Social Innovation GmbH (ZSI) in Vienna, Austria. Since 2013 he has been working in various internal EU-funded projects funded under FP7, Horizon 2020, EuropeAid and Interreg with partners from the EU Member States, the Western Balkan Countries, the Eastern Partnership Countries, Turkey, Ukraine, and Southeast Asia. He is an expert on strategic project communications and the dissemination and exploitation of project-generated results and was/is principally leading the communication, dissemination and exploitation of projects such as Danube-INCO.NET (FP7), EaP PLUS (H2020), SEA-EU JFS Phase 1 and 2 (H2020) and S4D4C (H2020). Moreover, he has a profound knowledge about Smart Specialisation Strategies as part of national STI policies. Regarding trainings, he is experienced in presenting the Horizon 2020 programme (for the International Cooperation Service Facility of the EC in H2020) and was involved in several proposal-writing workshops targeting applicants from EU third countries for Horizon 2020 funding. In an honorary capacity, Philipp was a Young European Ambassador for the Eastern Partnership countries from 10/2016 till 06/2020. He is a member of the youth board of the Policy Crossover Center (PCC): Vienna - Europe, an Austrian expert network dealing with EU related topics and occasionally writes on EU topics for print and online media (Der Standard, Die Presse, Wiener Zeitung, EURACTIV).
Andrea Mayr Andrea Christiane MAYR is working as senior project/financial manager at the ZSI since 2001.Her experience comprises evaluation, monitoring and co-ordination of projects and programmes as well as consultancy and financial/project management. She was engaged in many projects in South Eastern Europe:  e.g. co-ordinator of the Austrian Science and Research Liaison Offices (ASOs) in Bulgaria, Slovenia and Czech Republic (2004-2010) and consultant for the Austrian Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs on the implementation and execution of development projects in South Eastern Europe in the fields of higher education and social policy (since 2004 managed by Austrian Development Agency), like HERAS (Higher Education, Research and Applied Science in Kosovo, 2016-2020) and HERAS PLUS (2020-ongoing). Andrea Mayr was also involved in several projects FP7 (EqUIP, Inno Indigo, Indigo Policy, EmployID, SI-DRIVE) and in different international research and coordination projects like RI-LINKS2UA, ResInfra@DR, Made in Danube. Currently, she is involved in H2020 projects: S4D4C Using science for/in diplomacy for addressing global challenges, CHERRIES, NEUROTWIN, BrainTwin etc