ERSTE Foundation

Welcome to the library

ERSTE Foundation Library is the knowledge hive of ERSTE Foundation. It is a special library serving both the research needs of scientific communities and a general public looking for information and entertainment.

The library advances knowledge by building collections and providing open access to materials and information resources that support and reflect both ERSTE Foundation’s mission and the diversity of its projects. We want to be the place that people in the ERSTE Foundation communities and the public in general think of first when they need information on social innovation, cultural development, contemporary artistic interventions, and European discourses.

Search the Library

Search the library’s Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) to find books, magazines, journals, videos, DVDs, and individually catalogued electronic resources collected by ERSTE Foundation Library.

Catalogue records for print material will display their location in the library. Links embedded in the records for digital resources will give you free or institutional access to the full text or take you to the publishing institution. Ask the librarian for institutional access at ERSTE Foundation Library.

Collection Development

The ERSTE Foundation Library collection has been developed since 2007 to support the research requirements of the foundation’s staff and project partners, as well as the public in general. ERSTE Foundation Library presently holds about 12,000 items. The collection grows by an average of about 500 items per year through purchases, private donations, book exchange and contributions by ERSTE Foundation community members and project partners.

Latest Acquisitions

Collection description

The library’s holdings cover a wide range of subjects, focusing on the development of open societies, on contemporary socio-economic and cultural changes, and on political conditions and situations in Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe.

The library houses comprehensive collections of research and information material on

– Contemporary art and media theory
– Conceptual art since 1960s
– Architecture and urbanism
– Cultural theory and policy
– Feminism, gender, and queer theory
– Minority and migration issues
– Information literacy
– New media and journalism
– Economic developments
– Political developments and wars
– Social change and care economy
– Social finance, banking and entrepreneurship
– Human ecology and climate change
– Financial literacy and personal finance
– NGO and project management
– Philanthropy
– European debates and integration

Collection guidelines

The criteria for acquiring material include specializations, formats, languages, geographical guidelines, and policies on collecting fictional texts.

Our main focus is on collecting actual material to support our primary goal and on providing access to information through online catalogues and search services. We therefore also collect appropriate indices to provide access to information about off-foundation collections, supporting knowledge development and information related to ERSTE Foundation’s mission, projects, and goals.


The main collection consists of monographic and serial publications. It includes monographs, exhibition catalogues, artist books, graphic novels, studies, surveys, journals, magazines, newspapers, back files, and annuals. Other formats collected include digital resources, maps, motion pictures, sound recordings, and video recordings.


The library’s major collection is in English and German, with materials in other languages collected from the publication activities of the foundation’s projects and communities.

Geographical guidelines

Based on the foundation’s focus, the library mainly collects information resources on Central, Eastern, and South-Eastern European countries. In particular, we cover the whole region of the so-called post-socialist countries, since historical and contemporary developments in these countries cannot be understood without their international relationships – be it in social, demographic, financial, cultural, or any other dimensions of political or everyday life.

Special collection of fictional texts

Because we consider fictional texts not just a resource for entertainment within the scope of language, national and gender performativity and identity, the library collects and maintains a collection made up of reading materials translated from their respective languages into German or English.

Special Collections

In addition to our main collection we provide comprehensive research collections and archives in the arts and financial literacy.

Kontakt Collection

The Kontakt artists’ monograph collection comprises publications by and about artists collected by Kontakt Collection. To get a list of these books, search the ERSTE Foundation Library online catalogue.

More on Kontakt Collection

­Economics and Financial Literacy Collection

This special collection comprises information resources on financial economics and financial literacy and displays the most recent publications on social banking and entrepreneurship, on money and other currencies like Bitcoins, on monetary policies, the financial crisis, investment strategies, sustainability, green finance and so on. The collection also includes educative treatments of personal finance not just for adults but for children and young adults, canonical readings in financial economics, bestsellers like Piketty’s “Capital in the 21st century” as well as biographies of persons in the corporate realm and the financial industry.

Get an overview of the Financial Literacy Collection at the ERSTE Foundation Library online catalogue.

Gender Check Research Archive

The Gender Check Research Archive provides limited access to the materials researched and collected for the exhibition “Gender Check. Femininity and masculinity in the art of Eastern Europe”.

The collection includes texts and visual material from 24 countries:
Albania, Armenia, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Georgia, Hungary, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Ukraine.

More on Gender Check

Gateway to CSEE

Search engines, library collections, repositories and research institutions on Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe.

Other major search engines and open access repositories


ERSTE Foundation Library
Am Belvedere 1
1100 Vienna

Erste Campus, Building Section F

Monday – Thursday
10.00 am – 5.00 pm

Drop us a line or book a library tour

+43 50100 15461

Ask our librarian
Jutta Braidt
Head of ERSTE Foundation Library

Opening hours apply all-season, except statutory holidays and Christmas holidays.

ERSTE Foundation Library is a special library that is open to the public. The library encourages Erste Group employees to request library instruction tailored to their occupation and/or their recreational needs.

The library has research and work stations for users. Materials from the open access library stakes can be borrowed with a library card. You are able to obtain a library card at the library desk or at the reception desk. Besides issuing your library card, our librarian will also assist in finding resources or recommend a good read.

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Florian Bauer

Director Social Finance, Sustainability and Innovation
Since 2023, Florian Bauer has been responsible for social finance, sustainability and social innovation at ERSTE Foundation. Prior to this role, Florian worked in the NGO & Social Entrepreneurship sector for more than 13 years. He led the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), an international multilateral NGO that works to accelerate market-based deployment of renewable energy and energy efficient systems in developing countries, and was Managing Director & COO of the Impact Hub Vienna. From 2020-2023, Florian established strategic alliances with key partners and helped to create innovative semantic technology solutions at Semantic Web Company (SWC), a leading IT company in semantic AI solutions.