Every year the European Forum Alpbach hosts scientists, personalities from business, politics, economics and culture, to discuss in various fora and with students about current issues and about "a new Europe". The Forum transcends conventional barriers between nations and academic disciplines. The underlying principle of all discussions is one of intellectual freedom, and a spirit of tolerance vis-à-vis different points of view.
The forum was first held in 1945, when, after the devastating catastrophe of the Second World War, not only an economic recovery was needed in Europe, but also a new initiative in regard of an "intellectual reconstruction" was certainly necessary. Austria's new post-war freedom and independance was closely linked to peace in Europe. In the mountain village Alpbach, Otto Molden and Simon Moser had the idea to support such aims with the foundation for the "Internationale Hochschulwochen" ("International College Weeks"), which in 1949 became the European Forum Alpbach.
Since its inception, more than 4,000 people from over 60 countries have taken up the invitation to participate in the European Forum Alpbach.
European Forum Alpbach