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Leoben

The city of Leoben is the second largest city in Styria with around 26,000 inhabitants. The years have left their multifaceted traces and Leoben is therefore known as the Gateway to the Styrian Iron Road. Leoben was mentioned in documents already in 1314 as an iron-trading town. Iron has played a great role for the town, with the accompanying highs and lows.The best overview of the more than 2000 year history of the city, its region, economics and its proud mining activities can be gained in the Museum Center.The city was shaped for centuries by the trade with iron and the research in raw materials carried out at the University of Leoben, which was founded in 1840. The university is one of the most important part of the city. In teaching and in research as well as in the many cooperation projects with industrial partners and other education facilities the university is strongly internationally oriented.But not only research and industry are key issues in the city of Leoben also the cultural life, a good infrastructure and attractive living conditions characterize the city.

§The city has to deal with the demographic change in specific with a declining and ageing population. §Due to the economic crisis the trend of advanced de-industrialization has become worse because the economic stagnation leads to stagnating revenues.The city sees its main challenge to attract new companies and inhabitants in order to stabilize the economical foundation and to create a sustainable structure. And to look for cooparations within the city in the fields of research and development or culture and tourism, et. to create an attractive city image for new and existing inhabitants.There was a dramatic change in the economic basis because the former state owned steal industry has become a successful private owned company. Due to this situation the city had to adopt its economical strategies completely. The privatization was accompanied with a massive employees reduction. Also suppliers located in this area where strongly affected and the city was suffering of a strong emigration of inhabitans as well as less tax incomes.

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