In order to further strengthen the topic of cyber security in Salzburg, a joint professorship is being established at the Paris Lodron University Salzburg (PLUS) and the Salzburg University of Applied Sciences (FH Salzburg). This unique "bridge professorship" connects the two institutions as well as teaching and research areas. Financial support comes from the Province of Salzburg.
From the winter semester 2024/25, the professor will start at both FH Salzburg and PLUS. An international call for applications is currently looking for experts who would like to advance their research and teaching in this unique environment. Funding will come from the Province of Salzburg, which will contribute around 1 million euros, as well as third-party funds from both universities.
Establishing Expertise in Cyber Security in Salzburg
Advancing digitalisation also increases the risk of cyber attacks on companies and institutions. The province of Salzburg is taking the challenges very seriously. Landeshauptmann Wilfried Haslauer: "Salzburg’s companies are comparatively well prepared for digital attacks and the majority categorise them as normal day-to-day business. However, as this field is developing dynamically, it is essential for small and medium-sized companies in particular to constantly adapt their cyber resilience. The new joint professorship for cyber security at the University of Salzburg and Salzburg University of Applied Sciences is building up knowledge at the location that will benefit the resilience of our local economy in the long term."
Education and training for cyber security experts
The bridge professorship is part of a comprehensive set of measures to strengthen cyber security expertise in Salzburg. Another project is the establishment of a centre of excellence for cyber security. This also includes the new IT Master’s degree programme "Cyber Security" at the FH Salzburg, which will start in autumn 2024. FH Rector and Managing Director Dominik Engel: "Current incidents and those of the past show how relevant the topic is. That is why we are also offering a Master’s programme in Cyber Security at the Salzburg University of Applied Sciences in the coming academic year." In addition to technical content, the programme also covers ethical and economic aspects. More and more companies - including in production and critical infrastructure - are digitalising, creating new areas of potential attack that need to be secured. This requires people who have an eye on cyber security.
Cooperation between the University of Applied Sciences and the University of Salzburg
The University of Applied Sciences and the University of Salzburg are linked by a long-standing and diverse cooperation, which is now being further expanded in the form of a unique professorship in the field of cyber security. This co-operation makes it possible to combine the strengths of both institutions. The Managing Rector of the University of Salzburg, Martin Weichbold, explains: "This cooperation with the FH Salzburg forms an ideal interface between well-founded basic research and applied research. There are few other areas where current findings from basic research are translated so quickly and directly into specific applications and, conversely, where current developments are taken up by basic research. With the broad expertise at the Faculty of Digital and Analytical Sciences, we can offer perfect integration and support for the new professorship."