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Internet study – „Digital Atlas of Austria 2.0”

The aim of this study is to identify and analyze internet-based digital services vital to the Austrian government and society, to provide an assessment of their criticality and to illustrate the interdependencies of these services.

The “Internet” consists of multiple layers. To increase the resilience of the cyber dimension systematically on a nation-wide scale, an understanding of all these layers is necessary. The KIRAS-study “Digitaler Atlas Österreich” (“Digital Atlas of Austria”) has shown that the first layer – the physical cables – cannot be evaluated and the second layer – the logic course of dataflow – can be depicted only to a limited extent. This study showed clearly that there is a special demand for research on the third layer of the internet – the digital services. Hence, this demand should be covered by the project at hand through

  1. an assessment of the criticality of these services and
  2. an illustration of the interdependencies of these services. 

Building on these findings, the resilience of the Austrian internet and its relevance for state and society can be evaluated. The setup of the study requires a cooperative process for the integration of a variety of experts and sources. Firstly, already existing databases of internet services will be utilised and exploited and, in addition, new databases should be established based on market analysis. The aim is to get an overview of the Austrian internet services market in order to clarify which websites, apps, e-government- applications, etc. are generally used. Afterwards, the societal and security-political dimension of internet services should be considered.

As it is foreseeable that the gathered data on internet services will be extensive, the criticality and relevance of these services should be assessed in the next step. Experts from the fields of administration, economy and academia should sift the data, assess it and reduce it to all those services that are of relevance to Austria. In order to avoid misjudgements by the experts and to document relevant discussions and derivations, data reduction should be facilitated by a cooperative analysis software.

The consolidated data should be presented to the experts again, visualised by the software, so that they could assess the relevance of these internet services for Austria. Various factors should influence this assessment, such as the duration/number of usage of these internet services, their relevance for further services, their value chain, etc. These expert consultations have the following aims: firstly, the truly critical internet services should be identified for further evaluation and secondly, a prioritisation/categorisation of these services should be enabled.

Subsequently, the providers of the previously determined critical services should be identified. Hence, it will be analyzed how the Austrian market is composed and who the relevant stakeholders (e.g. owners, shareholders, supply and value chains, providers, etc.) could be with respect to a potential influence on these critical internet services. Especially Austrian companies should be considered (companies with their headquarters in Austria) as these are the most relevant for governance. Legal and regulatory frameworks will be considered accordingly, especially with respect to room of manoeuvre by the administrative branch. After the illustration of normative and factual conditions, possible fields of action and recommendations for courses of action will be outlined. Thereby, an internal consequence-analysis by the relevant stakeholders based on the outcome of the project should be enabled.

Klaus Kieseberg, SBA Research gGmbH

SBA Research GmbH (Projektkoordinator)
Repuco Unternehmensberatung GmbH 
Institut für empirische Sozialforschung GmbH

Klaus Kieseberg
SBA Research gGmbH
Favoritenstraße 16
A-1040 Wien

Tel.: +43 (1) 505 36 88
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