LINK - Cross national interdisciplinary network for natural science communications

LINK is a very interdisciplinary project and links between arts, social- and natural-sciences as well as between science and society. A central role is the communication and collaborative working of all involved actors to raise consciousness of the principles of sustainability within society.

  • Province of Styria
  • Public Employment Service Styria


  • Styrian Science-, Environment- and Culture Project Executing Organisation Ltd.“ (Steirischen Wissenschaft-, Umwelt- und Kulturprojekträger GesmbH)
  • “Job Market Service Styria” (Arbeitsmarktservice Steiermark)
  • “Union For Nature Conservation Of Styria” (Naturschutzbund Steiermark)
  • “Association For City-Ecology And Environment-Pedagogics – Natural Park” (Verein für Stadtökologie und Umweltpädagogik-Naturerlebnispark) .  

With the project “Genetic Engineering and Alternatives in Styria” the IFZ is giving an impetus on employment. Since March 1999 we are pursuing this project in direction of the “Styrian Science-, Environment- and Culture Project Executing Organisation Ltd.“ and the “Job Market Service Styria”. Through this project jobs get created in fields of activity, which are resulting from the scientific-technological alteration (mainly in the field ob biotechnology) and alternative ways to go. In this time all in all 38 persons got the possibility of an re-entry into the job-market. 27 of these people were successful in getting a job after one year of project-work in the field of “Genetic Engineering and Alternatives in Styria”.

The main contents the project deals with, are the actual developments of biotechnology and alternative approaches. The project is structured in several modules – each of them is handling the issue with different perspectives. The focus is on the following points of interest:

  1. The application of genetic engineering and biotechnological practices in medicine, in agriculture, and food-production
  2. Sustainable developments in rural areas as an alternative to industrial agriculture
  3. Prenatal diagnostics and reproduction medicine

Within LINK the IFZ is mainly working on aspects of education and communication processes about modern biotechnology. Genetic engineering got an important topic during the last years in the field of education, not only at the University or in school but also in the context of further education and vocational training. Applications in the field of agriculture and food-production, and human medicine are the main topics. Not only scientific and technological aspects are the issue, but also the way of dealing with biotechnology within society and politics is a subject of education. The initiation and the support of social learning-processes and the involvement of a broad public can contribute a more social sound design of new technologies – in the context of our project: in particular of new biotechnology. With this in mind we develop concepts for an interdisciplinary, practice-orientated, situated and practical-relevant discussion of science and technology on the case-study of genetic engineering.

Research Topic