Austria Center Vienna behind first scientific podcast by a congress centre

March 24, 2022

The Austria Center Vienna and journalist Mari Lang are launching “Verstehe!” (meaning “I understand”) – the first scientific podcast to be released directly by a congress venue. Starting now, new episodes featuring experts and people affected by the topics under discussion will appear every 14 days. Besides delving into the science behind the subjects covered by the Austria Center Vienna’s congresses, the talks will also look at their specific impact on people’s lives as well as illustrating practical experiences through personal stories. The new German-language podcast will lift what is shaping up to be a busy spring for congresses at the Austria Center Vienna to a whole new level.

“As part of our broader role in society, over the past six years we have publicised more than 70 of the scientific topics covered by congresses held at the Austria Center Vienna, helping to make them more accessible to the general public. And now we are taking things a step further with our new science talk from the Austria Center Vienna, which will provide an entertaining overview of the scientific content discussed at the venue in a ‘coffee break’ format, showing just how much passion our researchers have for their work. We want to inspire young people and support the next generation of scientific experts,” explained Susanne Baumann-Söllner, Managing Director of the Austria Center Vienna.

The new science talk from the Austria Center Vienna

ORF journalist and podcast expert Mari Lang has been brought on board as host and presenter of the new podcast series. She will talk to some of the nation’s top scientific experts at the Austria Center Vienna about a range of topics that affect lots of people in Austria and form the focus of many of the international congresses hosted at the venue. “The science talks are in-tended to provide a way for people to understand the world better, while helping to counter the increasing scepticism surrounding scientific topics. The podcasts are not just designed to appeal on an intellectual level, and will feature a mix of expert insight and life experience,” said Mari Lang, summarising the underlying concept. Personal stories from people affected by the issues being discussed will provide a frame of reference for audiences while helping to bring the topics to life.

Podcast opens with two angles on the human psyche

The subject matter on the new science podcast covers a very broad spectrum. The first episode will take a look at the direct impacts of the coronavirus on the population. In this pilot episode Dr. Siegfried Kasper – Professor of Psychiatry and Head of the Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at the Medical University of Vienna – will give an insight into the contemporary mood. He explores whether the coronavirus pandemic really is making us de-pressed and explains the difference between a mood disorder and depression, as well as looking at why experts think that it is very likely that the suicide rate – particularly among men – will rise after the pandemic. In the following episode – the first to feature someone directly affected by the subject matter – the Austrian journalist and cabaret artist Guido Tartarotti talks about how he copes with depression and has learned to live with it.

A strong sign of life for the industry

The Verstehe! podcast will also touch on tomorrow’s world, reporting on whether it will soon be possible to lose weight when sleeping and how much sense it makes to cultivate skin in a laboratory. The sheer variety of subjects covered by the podcasts reflects the huge range of congresses that will be returning to the Austria Center Vienna this year. “It underlines the importance of science in all of our lives, strengthens Austria’s image as a research location and sends out a strong sign of life for the event industry,” Baumann-Söllner confirmed.

Podcast providers and link

The new podcast (German title: “Verstehe!”) is available from our website at www.acv.at/podcast as well as leading podcast providers such as Apple Podcast, Deezer, Google Podcast and Spotify.

About IAKW-AG

Internationales Amtssitz- und Konferenzzentrum Wien, Aktiengesellschaft (IAKW-AG) is responsible for maintaining the Vienna International Centre (VIC) and operating the Austria Center Vienna. The Austria Center Vienna is Austria’s largest conference centre, with 19 halls, 180 meeting rooms, and some 26,000 m² of exhibition space, and is one of the top players on the international conference circuit.

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