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Executive Board

Franz Fischler has been the President of the European Forum Alpbach since 2012. Together with four Vice Presidents he is responsible for managing and representing the association.

Our honorary presidents: Erhard Busek, Heinrich Pfusterschmid-Hardtenstein

 

Franz Fischler(c)PeterMayr
Franz Fischler, President
Franz Fischler was EU commissioner for agriculture and fisheries between 1995 and 2004.
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In his capacity as Federal Minister of Agriculture and Forestry in Austria (1989-1994) he played an important role in the negotiations for Austria’s accession to the European Union. After his work for the European Commission, Franz Fischler was consultant for several governments and NGOs. In addition, he has been a chairman of numerous NGOs, such as the Global Marshall Plan Initiative, the EcoSocial Forum and the RISE-Foundation. In March 2012, Franz Fischler was elected President of the European Forum Alpbach.

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Why Alpbach?

“I see the Forum especially as a chance for young people. It is a unique opportunity for interdisciplinary encounter, networking, and civic participation.”

Contact: +43 1 718 17 11-18
franz.fischler@alpbach.org
 Caspar Einem(c)PeterMayr
Caspar Einem, Vice President
Caspar Einem is the former Austrian Minister for the Interior, Minister of Science and Transport, and his party’s spokesman for European and foreign policy in the Austrian Parliament.

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Before that, he worked for the Austrian Chamber of Labour and held various management positions in the OMV AG. Caspar Einem has always been committed to different causes on a voluntary basis, serving, among other commitments, as President of the European Centre of Employers and Enterprises providing Public services (CEEP) and President of the federation of social democratic university graduates, intellectuals and artists (BSA). Currently, he is the President of the Austrian Institute for International Affairs  (oiip) as well as chair of the supervisory board of the Austrian air traffic control company, Austro Control.

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Why Alpbach?

“The European Forum Alpbach is a unique opportunity, a platform for open dialogue, both serious and enjoyable, across borders. Working in the new Presidium is just as enjoyable and inspiring. A good reason to participate actively.”

 Sonja Puntscher-Riekmann(c)PeterMayr
Sonja Puntscher Riekmann, Vice President
Sonja Puntscher Riekmann is Professor of Political Theory and European Policy at the University of Salzburg and Director of the Salzburg Centre of European Union Studies.

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In the course of her career, she has held leading and research positions at the universities of Vienna, Innsbruck, Berlin and Salzburg, the Max Planck Institute for Social Studies in Cologne, and the Austrian Academy of Sciences. In the 1980s, Sonja Puntscher Riekmann was on the federal board of trustees of the Green party and soon became a member of the Austrian Parliament. She was on the panel evaluating the projects of the TSER programme of the European Commission and president of the social sciences evaluation panel for awarding the Descartes prize.

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Why Alpbach?

“The EFA is a place of intellectual encounter of representatives of science, politics and economy focusing on salient European issues and Europe’s relations with the world. It is the presence of a multitude of young Europeans that makes the EFA a very special event.”

 Claus J. Raidl(c)PeterMayr
Claus J. Raidl, Vice President
Claus J. Raidl has been president of the Austrian National Bank since 2008.

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 Previously, he was a long-time member of the board of directors of voestalpine AG, one of the largest steel corporations worldwide, and chairman of the board of directors at Böhler-Uddeholm AG. Claus J. Raidl is active in several other areas, e.g., as chair of the advisory board of I.S.T. Austria (Institute of Science and Technology Austria) and member of the advisory board of the Vienna Technical Museum. He is on the supervisory board of Flughafen Wien AG (the Vienna Airport).

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 Ursula Schmidt-Erfurth(c)PeterMayr
Ursula Schmidt-Erfurth, Vice President
Ursula Schmidt-Erfurth is Professor and Chair of the Department of Ophthalmology and Optometry at the Medical University, Vienna, one of the largest academic institutions in ophthalmology in Europe.
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She studied human medicine at Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich, Germany, and spent several years as a researcher at Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA. Her scientific research focuses on the development of novel diagnostic techniques. She is also founder of the Vienna Reading Center (VRC), an independent institution for digital imaging performing image analysis for over 140 clinical sites worldwide. Additionally, she is Head of a Christian Doppler Laboratory at the Medical University of Vienna.

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Why Alpbach?

“The European Forum Alpbach is a unique platform of encounter for different disciplines, countries, cultures, ideas and people. A common identity and motivation are the foundation of a society living in mutual respect and dignity.”