Brigitte Ederer

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Person.png Brigitte Ederer   AmazonRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(banker, politician, executive)
Brigitte Ederer.jpg
Born27 February 1956
Vienna, Austria
Alma materUniversity of Vienna
Negotiated Austria's accession to the European Union in 1994. Board of Siemens AG.

Brigitte Ederer is an Austrian industrial manager and former politician for the Social Democratic Party of Austria (SPÖ). She was a member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG and previously EU State Secretary in the Austrian Federal Chancellery at the time Austria was preparing to join the EU.

Early Life

Brigitte Ederer is the daughter of a single mother who moved with her and her brother Anton to Vienna. She attended a federal high school in the 21st district of Vienna, Floridsdorf, and then studied economics at the University of Vienna. In 1980 she completed her studies.

From 1977 to 1992 she worked for the economics department of the Vienna Chamber of Labor. Previously she was active with the Rote Falken, the Socialist Youth and the VSStÖ, from 1980 she took part in the party work of the Social Democratic Party.

After the National Council election in 1983, when Ederer appeared on far down on the Vienna SPÖ candidate list, the long-time Chancellor Bruno Kreisky resigned. In the course of the following changes, the Viennese MP Franziska Fast left her seat. As a successor, Ederer was sworn in on July 5, 1983 as the first member of the SPÖ under the magical age limit of 30 years in parliament, which was then ruled by an SPÖ-FPÖ coalition. She remained a member of parliament for almost nine years until 1992 and was a member of the National Council twice for short periods from 1994–1997.

In her function as European State Secretary to Federal Chancellor Franz Vranitzky from April 3, 1992, she promoted Austria's accession to the EU. As Vranitzky's representative, she negotiated with Foreign Minister Alois Mock in Brussels. On March 1, 1994, the accession negotiations were concluded after an overnight finish; a photo in which Mock gives Ederer a kiss out of joy went through media.[1]

In the referendum on June 12, 1994, 66.6% of the Austrians voting decided in favor of joining the then European Union, which took effect on January 1, 1995.

After resigning as State Secretary on October 27, 1995, she became Federal Managing Director of the SPÖ (until 1997) and then Finance and Economic City Councilor in Vienna. During this time she was also President of the Vienna Tourist Board.

After leaving politics in mid-December 2000, Ederer moved to the executive board of Siemens AG Austria. At the end of the Supervisory Board meeting on December 13, 2005, Brigitte Ederer succeeded Albert Hochleitner as General Director and CEO of Siemens Austria. In May 2010, Ederer moved to the Executive Board of Siemens AG in Munich. She was in charge of Corporate Human Resources and was responsible for the economic region of Europe including Germany. In September 2013 she was dismissed prematurely and therefore received a compensation payment of 5,600,000 euros.[2]

Brigitte Ederer has been chairwoman of the Association of the Electrical and Electronics Industry (FEEI) in the Austrian Chamber of Commerce since May 2010. In 2019 she handed over the office to her successor Wolfgang Hesoun.

In September 2014 Ederer was elected chairwoman of the supervisory board of the Austrian railroads, ÖBB. Also in September 2014, she resigned her ÖIAG supervisory board post. On February 9, 2018, an extraordinary general meeting of ÖBB decided on the initiative of the new owner representatives of the Federal Government to recall Ederer and most of the supervisory board members.[3] At the end of February 2018, Arnold Schiefer succeeded her as Chairman of the Supervisory Board of ÖBB Holding AG. In May 2020, Ederer returned to the ÖBB supervisory board at the request of Transport Minister Leonore Gewessler.

Ederer is a member of the supervisory board of Boehringer Ingelheim, Infineon, Schoeller-Bleckmann Oilfield Equipment and Wien Holding.


Brigitte Ederer is married to Hannes Swoboda, who was a SPÖ member of the European Parliament until 2014. The two live in Vienna's 2nd district, Leopoldstadt , where Ederer has been politically active since the early 1980s.


Events Participated in

Bilderberg/20085 June 20088 June 2008US
The 56th Bilderberg, Chantilly, Virginia, 139 guests
WEF/Annual Meeting/201126 January 201130 January 2011World Economic Forum
2230 guests in Davos