In a ranking recently published by startupheatmap.eu, Vienna is up front.
Of all European cities evaluated, the Danube metropolis has the highest proportion of women-specific startup events (see interactive map). This is only one of many reasons why Vienna is particularly attractive for women. We have summarised the most important arguments:
- Security: There is hardly a major city, which is safer than Vienna. The low crime rate is not only the result of successful violence prevention, but also of targeted measures in urban design: streets, alleys and paths are well lit at night, public spaces such as parks are designed to be visible.
- Political representation: While in Switzerland there was still a struggle over the nationwide right to vote for women, in 1987 Vienna had the first female city councillor in office (Christine Schirmer) who was explicitly responsible for women's issues. That has not changed until today.
- Childcare and schools: Let's be honest: the majority of childcare is still provided by women. As long as this does not change, the dense network of free childcare facilities is a decisive prerequisite for the professional development opportunities of Viennese women: from crèche places to free kindergartens and all-day schools.
- Infrastructure/mobility/environment: Anyone who has ever taken a stroller through Vienna will learn to appreciate intact sidewalks just as much as the barrier-free access to public transport or the wide range of playgrounds and green spaces. Even if more and more fathers are strolling through the city with their offspring, the majority of those who drive a baby carriage are still female.
- Promotion of girls and women: Women who are not self-employed can take advantage of various specific subsidies from the Vienna Workers' Promotion Fund WAFF. The Vienna Business Agency offers special funding programmes and consulting services to female entrepreneurs and start-ups. Supported projects led by a woman receive additional funds. Workshops with the aim of sparking enthusiasm for science and research amongst girls contribute to sensitising them to job profiles that go beyond role stereotypes.
Vienna, August 10th 2020