The Telekom Austria Group regularly organises events and discussion forums with the aim of furthering ongoing dialogue with its stakeholders and also to discuss current and future topics of interest. The Group sees these events above all as a platform for dialogue and as a source of inspiration for new ideas and innovations.
Once a year, the Telekom Austria Group invites outstanding personalities who inspire others with their ideas and who put the world into a different perspective to future.talk. Since 2001, international stars from science, industry and politics such as Al Gore, Kofi Annan, Steve Wozniak, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, Sir Richard Branson and Arianna Huffington have given the Telekom Austria Group's guests new food for thought. Over the years, future.talk has emerged as an institution in its own right, a dialogue platform set up with the goal of facilitating a direct transfer of ideas and the sharing of views between business, the media, politics and science
Arianna Huffington, president and chief editor of "The Huffington Post" discussed with the German "media watchdog" Stefan Niggemeier the future of media.
Has the way we know journalism until today become obsolete? Will we have to do without a plurality of opinion, outstanding journalism and independent reporting in future? And what does it mean for our society if there is a fundamental change in the media? That the debate about old and new media and their relationship is obsolete, that a hybrid and convergent media model exists and that traditional media also do their work well online and new media invest in research and good journalism, thereof Arianna Huffington is convinced. Readers and viewers are the first time in the center, the "audience" tells the story.
Sir Richard Branson talked about how innovational spirit and entrepreneurship can be compatible with ecological and social engagement.
For the out-of-the-box thinker Branson it is not monetary aspects that have higher priority, but the highest social and ecological standards. Sustainable and responsible economic activity, as Branson practices it in his worldwide enterprises, demands an appropriate infrastructure: information and communication technologies constitute the key technologies for the fight against climate change and to close the digital gap.
Jared Cohen, Eli Pariser and Slavoj Žižek discussed "How does the Internet shape our thinking?".
Where we live, what we buy and where we travel: all this information has long since been stored in the Internet. The virtual world knows our decisions even before we know them ourselves. We are supplied with a daily set of information that perfectly appeals to our taste. This is very convenient. However, we should ask ourselves, to what extent is our reality affected by this? Does the Internet hold a mirror up before us that reads our minds, showing us a matching virtual image of the world?
Sir Tim Berners-Lee, Anke Domscheit-Berg, Viktor Mayer-Schönberger and Antonia Rados discussed the topic “Who rules the Internet Society?”.
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak and futurologist Ray Kurzweil share their visions on the topic "Manchine" with us.
Human networking has become an essential part of our lives.
Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Kofi Annan drew enthusiastic crowds to mobile.futuretalk 2008.
Al Gore is no doubt one of the most complex and impressive figures of our times: During his eight year term as Vice-President of the United States under Bill Clinton he kept pushing the development of the internet following his vision of the "Information Superhighways". His documentary film "An Inconvenient Truth" on his strategies against global warming won two Oscars. On October 24th Al Gore gave a presentation as key note speaker at the mobile.futuretalk 07 on the future of mobility. The event was organized by mobilkom austria and more than a thousand people listened to Mr. Gore's presentation.
mobilkom austria celebrated its 10th anniversary at the Burgtheater in Vienna. More than 1.000 guests and prominent companions from politics, business, sports and culture came to congratulate Austria's leading mobile phone provider. In his keynote speech special guest Bob Geldof talked about the importance of building bridges between people by using the means of global communication. The show was hosted by ORF-anchor Ingrid Thurnher and Ö3-"mike-man" Tom Walek. Saint Privat and iANARA were among the show acts.
Bertrand Piccard, world-champion balloonist and psychiatrist, presented his insights.
550 guests came to the Museumsquartier in Vienna to see the performance of Kjell Nordström and Jonas Ridderstråle on the 27th of October 2004. Both lamented the fact that people like to copy products, strategies and ideas of others. Why? In order to minimize their risk. However, this is very dangerous: Imitating others leads to nothing but "creative impotence" - a phenomenon already vividly described by the "Funksters" in their new book "Karaoke Capitalism".
"Content" does not serve the purpose of acquiring more information or knowledge, but is used for building and keeping up relationships. Douglas Rushkoff, US-specialist on cyber culture, new media and entertainment wowed a crowd of more than 500 visitors of mobile.futuretalk 2003. He explained the role "Social Currency" plays in our everyday lives and how companies which seek to be successful content providers have to take "Social Currency" into account.
Esther Dyson, the "First Lady of the internet", attracted an audience of 400 people from politics, business, culture and media to the Museumsquartier in Vienna. The same number of people joined in online. The US-author, Wallstreet analyst, investor in Russia and company owner Dyson focused on the rules of the game for the digital future in her presentation "It's a user-controlled world": more freedom on the one hand, protecting the rights of the individual on the other. A lively discussion with the audience evolved on topics such as "privacy on the internet" as well as on sociological and technical differences between the US and Europe concerning communication habits and behavior.
The famous US trend scout Faith Popcorn, who coined the term "cocooning", came to Vienna in November 2001 as mobilkom austria's guest. At the mobile.futuretalk she spoke about "new female power" and its impact on marketing strategies.
Several times a year, inspiring personalities are invited to the discussion forum Business School Impact to share their experience with a select group of invited guests and engage in debate with top experts. The international character of the event and diversity play a central role, with guests invited from across Europe so that a variety of perspectives can be attained. Each event revolves around a group of experts from an industry who share their own experiences with others so that they can learn from one another and draw lessons for the future.
October: From Managing Employees to Creating Fans
Simon Sinek spoke about great leaders and the impact they can have on a company at the Telekom Austria Group's third Business School Impact event. After his keynote address, Willms Buhse, an expert on digital leadership, and Silke Eisenreich, a partner at the Vienna office of Egon Zehnder, joined the discussion about future challenges in leadership.
June: Hijacking Markets with Great Ideas
What is the secret behind great ideas? Why do some companies seem to come up with great ideas just like that and other's don't? Keynote speaker Tom Hunsaker discussed this topic under the title "Hijacking Markets with Great Ideas" with Karolina Schmidt (Airbnb), Andi Tschas (Pioneers founder) and Phat Huynh (Telekom Austria Group M2M).Tom Hunsaker, an expert and professor of behavioural strategy and innovation revealed that there is no secret recipe for great ideas, but there are opportunities to create an environment that is conducive to their development. However, this requires companies to reconsider their internal processes and consciously break their routines.
The Telekom Austria Group subsidiaries also regularly organise events designed to stimulate discussion and new ideas. These range from event series that address the interaction of technology and society, or deal with different issues in digital education, to discussions with successful personalities from the world of business.
twenty.twenty is an event series organised jointly by the Austrian subsidiary A1 and The Gap that was launched in September 2010. Since 2015, there is another partner of the event series: the Institute of Journalism and Media Management of the University of Applied Sciences Vienna. As a responsible communications company, A1 uses the event series "twenty.twenty - exploring the future" to enter into a dialogue with people who already take the digital world for granted in their everyday lives. The event series reflects on the "medium-to-distant" future, specifically the year 2020. What are the benefits and the price of technological progress? How will it change our lives? Is there an alternative to Facebook? Will the concepts of privacy and private life even be relevant in future?
February: Worth Seeing News
Visualisations, interactive graphics and comics journalism are perfect to impart complex contexts. However, they are still marginal phenomena than an integral part of the media operation. Reinhard Schulz-Schaeffer, professor of Informative Illustration and Visual Journalism at the HAW Hamburg, presented in his keynote at the 23rd edition of twenty.twenty numerous examples that show what constitutes contemporary Visual Journalism. As there was not always accordance during the panel discussion, on one point, however, there was general agreement: The tender shoots of Visual Journalism should be better maintained.
November: Net Slang – Everyday Communication in Null and One
The event on Net slang explored how new technological developments influence our everyday life and the possibilities the Net offers for creatively exploring language and cultivating dialects and sociolects. The sociolinguist Manfred Glauninger, a researcher at the Institute for Corpus Linguistics and Text Technology at the Austrian Academy of Sciences, who also teaches at the universities of Vienna and Graz, outlined exciting insights and potential scenarios for the future.
October: Interactive Learning - What Books Can’t Do
Trends in digital learning and the way in which the tools will develop in the future, formed the topics of discussion at the 21st event in the twenty.twenty series. Jörg Hofstätter, the managing partner of ovos, who has gained a reputation well beyond Austria’s borders as an expert for interactive learning and gamification, thrilled the audience with his outstanding keynote address.
September: Mobilise / Get Mobilised
The event on the topic "Mobilise / Get Mobilised" addressed the question of how the "campaign space Internet" will develop in years to come and which mobilisation strategies appear promising. The keynote presentation was given by cultural commentator and design thinker Kathleen Ziemann from the betterplace lab. The betterplace lab researches digital innovations that help people, organisations and companies from the social sector to do even more good.
April: Green IT in the Home: Users Can Bring About Change
The interaction between changes in individual behaviour and measures in the market was the subject of discussion at the event on "Green IT in the Home". Guests included Daniela Schiffer, co-founder of Changers.com, a Berlin-based start-up that combines solar-powered chargers with a community concept, Wolfgang Wimmer, the founder of Ecodesign Company and a professor at Vienna's University of Technology, and Claudia Sprinz, an electronics expert at Greenpeace.
February: iHealth – Will Everyone Soon Be Their Own health manager?
Dr. Google is probably the most frequently consulted physician in the world. Countless health start-ups, advice pages, apps and health forums, have fundamentally changed our attitude to our health. The keynote speaker Kai Sostmann analysed the issue of "Apps on Prescription". He is the head of the e-learning unit at the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin
November: Digital Trust
The more our life finds a counterpart in bits and bytes, the more we are forced to think about what constitutes trust in the digital sphere and the conditions that have to be created so that this trust is not disappointed or undermined. That was the topic of discussion at the 17th event in the twenty.twenty series. Guests were given plenty of food for thought during the keynote address by Volkmar Lotz, a member of the Board of Directors of "Trust in Digital Life" and Head of Product Security Research at SAP.
October: Death on the Net
The Internet has a fundamental conceptual weakness: It makes virtually no provision for death, disappearance and forgetting. Digitalised expressions – in the form of words, images or videos – that have been placed online stay there. Using complicated algorithms they are connected, analysed and processed. And in the process, they can easily lose all touch with reality. This becomes clearest, when someone dies. There is no status update for "dead". For the time being, our digitalised statements remain as they are. The Net doesn't forget us. On the one hand, we have to train the Net to forget us and on the other, we have to develop mechanisms to prevent technological "forgetting." The Berlin writer Elisabeth Rank explored the various aspects of death in the Net in her keynote address.
June: Seamless Mobility
Mobility is equated with self-determination, individuality and freedom. Many people even hold the view that it should be officially recognised as a basic human right. However, asserting this right requires framework conditions. Sustainable mobility concepts are based on environmentally-friendly means of transport and intelligent traffic management. But it is the interfaces that present the biggest challenges. At the 15th twenty.twenty event, discussions focused on what it takes to realise the vision of seamless mobility and how technology shapes our mobility culture.
April: At Home in the Internet
What is it that makes us feel "at home in the Internet", how do people use it, how do they interact there and, above all, where do the boundaries in this digital home reflect those of the physical world, where they are being torn down, and where are new boundaries perhaps being created? These were the topics discussed at the event "At Home in the Internet." Kathrin Kissau, a German social and media expert who has studied the area of migration and the Internet for many years now, thrilled the audience with her keynote address.
February: Gadgets: Devices Without a Conscience?
The debate about fair gadgets concluded that it is possible to produce gadgets under fair conditions and that customers are interested in such products. However, there are a multitude of obstacles that have to be overcome first. The FairPhone project is a step in the right direction. The project is a social enterprise supported by the non-profit Waag Society from the Netherlands and was founded with the aim of developing smartphones that are designed and produced with minimal harm to people and the planet. In his keynote address, Joe Mier from FairPhone explained that the first models will still just be "fair-er" phones, as it will not be possible to eliminate all obstacles. However, the initiative does show that significant improvements can be made.
Elements and mechanisms that have proved their worth in computer games are increasingly being used in non-game contexts: Advertising and marketing, educational institutes as well as companies are all deliberately turning to gamification. Although games and playing are a fundamental aspect of human culture, working with the topic is certainly not child's play. This was made clear at the 11th event in the discussion series twenty.twenty, which was opened with an exciting keynote address by Michael G. Wagner, a game researcher and professor of digital media at Drexel University in Philadelphia.
September: User Interface 2020. Beyond the Touchscreen
What form will man-machine interaction take in future? Touchscreens have brought the ideal of intuitive operation a significant step closer. After decades of research, voice control is now a viable solution and concepts like Kinect show how even complex processes can be coordinated with gestures. But the situation is still far from ideal. Most operating concepts are stand-alone solutions. Users are often left with the feeling that the "operating wheel" is invented afresh for each new appliance. And how to build a practical home media network can still provide enough subject material for a university thesis. Development work in this field is still not people-centred. This is also the view held by Martin Kaltenbrunner, Professor at the Department for Interface Cultures at the University of Art and Design in Linz. He thrilled the audience with his keynote lecture entitled Tangible Music and his presentation of an electronic musical instrument in the form of a table that is operated using physical objects.
The 10th twenty.twenty event was opened with a keynote address entitled "Dissemination and Interaction. Strategies for Knowledge Generation as Drivers of the Information Economy," delivered by the philosopher Klaus Neundlinger. Discussion focused on how the value of information and knowledge will change in the period up to 2020 – both in economic and social terms. For no matter how much we describe our society as an information or knowledge society, whether we talk about information or knowledge work, one thing is certain: information and knowledge are becoming increasingly important, and digitalisation and networking are changing the way we deal with the "raw material information."
May: Shared Resources: The Added Value of Sharing
In his opening statement, Felix Stalder, Professor of Digital Culture and Network Theories at the Zurich University of the Arts pointed out that sharing is the basis of every society. But in a networked society it becomes even more important. The principle of sharing is not just central to the production of knowledge; it also offers solutions for other acute problems, such as the earth's increasingly scarce resources. There are now more than seven billion people on earth and every day we hear that resources are becoming increasingly scarce. Smart cities offer one of the most efficient and resource-efficient forms of human habitation. The infrastructure of these cities and regions is designed to minimise the resource requirements per inhabitant. In addition to this purely technical aspect, there are also social and ethical components – those of sharing. In future, we will have to coordinate ourselves more intensively with others – in a range of areas. Owning will in many cases be replaced by using. The networking culture or technologies like cloud computing provide a host of examples of the added value that can be provided by sharing.
March: Tales from the Data Woods
Where methods of production and the media products themselves change, the organisation of editorial departments and media houses will change too. And ultimately, the way media users approach stories, visualisations and animations will be different too. The event "Tales from the Data Woods" explored the question of how data journalism will enrich and also change the media world in the next few years. The keynote address by Lorenz Matzat, who has realised one of the most acclaimed data journalism projects in Germany with his company Open Data City, was followed by a keen debate on how and why data journalism could and should gain a stronger foothold in Austria.
October: The City – Networking with Things
At the sixth event in the twenty.twenty series discussions focused on how people will be living in 2020 in smart cities, smart environments and in the Internet of Things, and how a fair framework would have to be structured so as to enable as many people as possible to benefit from these trends. In his opening statement, the urban development expert Prof. Rudolf Giffinger stressed the need for a holistic perspective. Although technology is a key element in the development towards "smarter" habitats, the process must be managed in a way that also incorporates social, cultural and economic aspects. The preliminary conclusion of a multi-facetted discussion: sustainable urban development and a sustainable human lifestyle have to go hand in hand.
June: Social Information Management
Does information only take on more importance if it can also be digitalised? Is the technology-centred approach adequate for describing the social processes of information delivery and assessment? How will people in 2020 move in the much vaunted sea of information? As surfers on the surface or as divers who understand how to uncover treasure? Or will it be enough to move confidently on the surface? How will this affect different areas and aspects of life? Which economic models will underlie working with information? Which jobs and social skills will be needed for it? These and many more exciting questions were raised and discussed by the audience and the keynote speaker Prof. Manfred Faßler, from the Goethe University Frankfurt.
April: General Education 2020
The knowledge canon of the future and the educational concepts that are required to support the confident use of new media were the topics of discussion of the fourth event. The impacts of digital media on society as a whole and the role of e-learning, e-democracy, e-participation and information and communication culture were discussed by Ursula Maier-Rabler, Professor at the ICT&S Centre - Centre for Advanced Studies and Research in Information and Communication Technologies & Society at the University of Salzburg.
February: Open Data. Open Rules?
The discussion focused on the economic and democratic potential of opening up access to public-sector data. The keynote speaker Daniel Dietrich from the Open Knowledge Foundation in Germany talked about a treasure that once it has been tapped allows a more intensive dialogue between government, public administration and citizens. Open data are also the basis for technological innovations. There is a new mood of anticipation in Austria too in this respect.
November: We ProdUSE
Digital media are making lasting changes to the production process and the way we use the media. Anyone can create content and make it available to a large audience. In future, new technologies such as sensors will help decide what is relevant, was the conclusion reached at the second event in the discussion series twenty.twenty. Keynote speaker Anton Waldt discussed the new media users, the "prosumers" with journalist Anneliese Rohrer, author and video blogger Robert Misik, and blogger and social media expert Ritchie.
September: Me 2.0
When is "someone" on the Web? Does a digital identity differ from a real life identity? Is there a difference between an online and offline identity? And how do they relate to one another – now and in the future? What is the value of a Web identity? How much security do we need, how many precautions do we take? Keynote speaker Geert Lovnik said that our identity will be even more split in future. The Dutch-Australian media expert and Net activist deleted his own Facebook account in 2010 as part of Quit Facebook Day.
The A1 Digital Education Forum an event series dedicated to education and media literacy in the digital age was launched in September 2014. What is contemporary education like nowadays? In which direction will the education system develop? What should educational provision for senior citizens be like? Which barriers and hurdles have to be overcome? And what role does communication technology play in the further development of the educational system? A1 hopes to use this series to create space for a discussion about educational issues and media skills and to provide impetus to make Austrians active participants in the digital society.
Si.mobil established the Business TopTalk with the aim of promoting Slovenian business and contributing to its development. Since 2011, Si.mobil's business customers and other business professionals have been inspired to come up with exciting new ideas and innovations by internationally respected guest speakers.
"If you really want to win on a tennis court, knowledge and the talent are not all that important. What's crucial is how psychologically prepared you are, where your heart is, and how much effort you are willing to put into achieving your victory. If you begin to think about money on the court, you've already lost. It's similar in business," explained Boris Becker, one of the most daring and unique tennis players of all time, and a successful businessman at Si.mobil's Business TopTalk 2014 event.
Niki Lauda won the audience's attention at Si.mobil's TopTalk 2013 event by talking about his career as both a professional sportsman and a successful businessman. He focused on seeking out business opportunities and conquering the challenging market environment. The keynote address was followed by a round table with successful Slovenian entrepreneurs who discussed the key to success.
"A football referee must make the best possible choice in a split second under pressure from players, spectators, and sponsors. The worst decision is to do nothing. You will make right and wrong decisions, and sooner or later things will go wrong in business just like they do in football, so be prepared to stay in the game." This is what Pierluigi Collina, undoubtedly one of the best football referees of all times, told guests at the Business TopTalk event. The lecture by the guest of honour Pierluigi Collina, who talked about his decision-making experiences, was followed by a round table featuring three successful Slovenian entrepreneurs, Roman Ferenčak, director of Ocean Orchids, Marko Lukić, director of Lumar, and Dejan Turk, chairman of Si.mobil's management board.
Si.mobil, in cooperation with Nokia, hosted the Business TopTalk business conference at the Ljubljana Exhibition and Convention Centre, where over three hundred guests enjoyed the privilege of learning the secrets of success from one of the most inspiring business speakers, Richard St. John. He outlined eight factors for success, which he describes in his global bestseller "8 to Be Great", emphasising that with passion, hard work, focus, encouragement, ideas, improvements, and persistence, and by fulfilling the needs of others, you can achieve anything.
The Serbian subsidiary Vip mobile launched the event series Vip.talk in 2014 with the aim of improving business standards on the local market and building relationships with the most progressive companies and institutions. The event was designed as an innovative platform for promoting the exchange of ideas and knowledge between the main representatives of the Serbian business community