For more than 130 years, the tomato has been a fixture on the Bulgarian table, but today, its production is on the verge of collapse. What is happening to the vegetable still enjoying the status of 'national pride' in Bulgaria?
Recently, the digital and tech sectors have grown exponentially across the CEE. With the pandemic accelerating the transition, the region stands to gain EUR 200 billion in GDP by 2030 from these industries. Yet, pursuing this revolution might not be as easy as it seems.
Printify has spearheaded the quickly growing print-on-demand market, helping regular people to become merchants selling unique products while avoiding storage costs and risks associated with unsold inventory.
With a growing startup scene that has already launched global firms like Skype, Bolt, Bitdefender, Wise, and Vinted, CEE has some lesser-known places where Europe's unicorns or "soonicorns" are thriving.
Central and Eastern Europe have the OECD's lowest wealth gap, with six of the top ten most economically equal countries being 3Seas nations. Why is this, and what are the benefits for society?
Since carrots tend to stick more in consumers' minds than sticks, Romania jumpstarted its green revolution through an array of incentives for electric vehicles instead of restrictions on their fuel-driven counterparts.
The Czech government is getting ready to update the National Energy Strategy. Even though the last one was published in 2015, many things have changed since then, and everyone is awaiting the updated version.
Is hearing the only way one can enjoy sound? No. Latvian startup Stapes is working on a sophisticated piece of tech to allow people to feel it through their bones. This multi-sensory experience brings deep relaxation.
Out of the progress and development that came out of Slovakia during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Q-Vent portable ventilator has caught the attention of many. It has since been further developed and put to use in a remote region of Kenya.
After years of declarations, studies, negotiations, and public procurements, Cluj-Napoca signed a EUR 2 bln contract to build Romania's second metro system (one of the few new ones in CEE).
Pixel Federation is a game developer and publisher of free-to-play mobile games. The company has been one of the biggest in the gaming industry, producing several games that have attracted 140 million gamers worldwide.
In a bid to revamp its mostly uncompetitive road system, Romania seeks to spend more than EUR 20 bln in the upcoming years on ambitious interconnectivity projects to freshen up its infrastructure. When these will turn from ink into concrete remains to be seen.
Digitail is the Romanian veterinary software bringing to the animal kingdom what the health system has already implemented for humans – an entirely digital, independent, and complete management solution.
The world's shortest cable car is in the heart of old Zagreb! The cable car has been a symbol of the city and an attraction among tourists for years. Take a [surprisingly comfy] seat and indulge in the charms of exploring Croatia's capital.
Telerenta is now bringing parts of Central Europe the possibility to rent electronics (like smart TVs) instead of having to purchase them outright, making the dream of having the latest tech at your disposal a reality.
This past May, something big happened at a sleepy airport in Balchik, in northeastern Bulgaria. Dronamics, a Bulgarian drone developer dubbed "The World's First Cargo Drone Airline," successfully completed the first flight of the Black Swan, its unmanned aircraft.
Family-run Diplomat Dental isn't just your run-of-the-mill dental equipment manufacturer. Quite the contrary, they are using their vast experience to push the boundaries of innovation when it comes to production processes and creating some unexpected partnerships in the meantime.
"Hi, you have given me life, and now my role is to represent you like a mirror!" echoed across Romania's Government chambers. This came not from a movie but from the introduction of the government's new honorary assistant, named ION, which is a not-so-simple AI system tasked with gathering data from citizens and voicing their thoughts.
Long gone are the days when making a beloved mix tape involved hours of sitting at your computer trying to download a single song that half the time still ended in an error message. You can thank a genius Croatian invention born from a master's thesis for that.
The war in Ukraine showed all the European countries how vulnerable their plans and infrastructure were. Czechia was no different, so it is now revising its crucial security strategies.
The most well-known wafer biscuit in Slovakia is undoubtedly Horalka, which has reigned supreme for almost 60 years. With a recipe still under lock and key, the sweet treat has won the hearts of many across the world.
In the hopes of transforming energy dreams into concrete actions, Bucharest aspires to overcome some of its shortcomings by shifting an entire sector. Regional interconnection, smart and green energy solutions, Black Sea exploration, and capacity expansion are all on the table.
The most promising resource of Belarus is rapidly and dramatically shrinking. Already, tens of thousands of Belarusian specialists, IT professionals, and programmers have applied for visas under Poland's Business Harbor program.
The gender pay gap is a topic that has been upsetting the public in recent years. What is the situation in the Three Seas Initiative countries, and is the region better off than the rest of Europe?
The oldest fair in the world has been held in Frankfurt since 1240. How does the Saint Dominic’s fair, held annually in Gdańsk, compare to that result? You might be surprised.
Before peppers came to Hungary, Bulgaria had already made a name for itself as a power to be reckoned with. And while production of locally grown red peppers is down, the Bulgarian pepper refuses to retire.
Almost a century ago, Slovenian engineer Herman "Noordung" Potočnik published his innovative concept for long-term human habitation of space. As is often the case with visionaries, hardly anyone took him seriously at first.
With the last decade of Bulgaria's residential real estate market being marked by steady price increases, many buyers remain surprisingly calm. Why? Because they don't plan on taking up a mortgage, to begin with.
Value-Added Tax (VAT) is the most common source of government income worldwide. What is the VAT situation in Czechia and the Three Seas Region, and can the proposed Czech changes ignite a VAT revolution?
Driving European progress, the Three Seas Fund's subsidiary, CARGOUNIT, supercharges its expansion with a game-changing locomotive lease to Romania's Unicom Tranzit.
Flying cars might seem like the stuff of dreams - or science fiction movies. However, the reality of seeing one in the skies near you is far closer that you might imagine.
Finally! It's hard to believe, but the Polish administration is increasingly relying on digital solutions. The idea of GovTech is breaking the typical bureaucratic inertia in innovating and digitizing the public sector.
Raising over $5 million on Kickstarter, Bird Buddy - a gamified, AI-powered bird feeder - was in the top 1% of all campaigns. A new nation of armchair ornithologists has been inspired.
Different Central European countries are investing heavily in the industry around electric vehicles, seeing it as an opportunity to catch up with the developmental lag from the 20th century.
Bulgarians and Romanians are the two nations that are the least likely in the EU to be absent from work due to sickness, data from Eurostat reveals. Exemplary work ethic? Sadly, the explanation lies elsewhere.
With the world largely considering the COVID-19 pandemic a thing of the past, its effects are still holding back one of Bulgaria's key industries – tourism. Add the war in Ukraine to the equation, and the question arises: will Bulgaria's tourism sector rebound (soon)?
The second oldest car manufacturer, Czech company Tatra, has a long history of making cars, trucks, and even railway wagons. They were also crazy enough to try this crazy idea: an aerodynamic car!
A consequence of the war in Ukraine will be the need to increase defense spending. Central European countries are already starting to understand this.
The bioleaching by bacteria can help remove undesired side effects of primary and secondary raw materials and support the growth of desired plants. This biological procedure has been turned into specific services and brought to the market by ekolive from Slovakia.
In the second half of the 20th century, Poland was an IT rarity in the Eastern Bloc. Under the conditions of a centrally planned economy, Polish engineers created successive generations of industrial and personal computers from scratch.
A quick Google search produces promising results: Bulgaria is not lacking in eco-friendly houses. Yet, Bulgarian architects devoted to promoting sustainable architecture say, “Not so fast…”
Romania is the neighbor with such fast Wi-Fi you wish you could borrow their password. Ironically, it's also still a country overly reliant on actual paperwork due to a lack of digital enterprises and services.
What do you get when you gather a team of students from Czech Technical University who are passionate about autonomous systems, speed, and innovation? Electrically powered autonomous Formula.
Bulgaria is not exactly known for its high fashion, and yet, browsing through the offerings of high-end brands in Paris and Milan, the country surely pops up a lot. Especially when it comes to ever-present Made in Bulgaria labels.
As recent geopolitical and economic realities in the Danube River and Black Sea regions changed, a new dawn for Romania's ports emerged. With increased flows came the need to swiftly expand, adapt and explore potential growth trajectories within the region and globally.
A-frame vacation homes, named after the Brda River in Poland, became popular in the 1970s. The project was so ingenious though that modern architects eagerly returned to the foundations of the idea.
In the last few decades, the idea of a skincare routine has become increasingly popular. Effective products based on natural ingredients are especially valued. And which multi-functional product hides the secret of the Croatian skincare routine?
Latvian startup Aerones has taken on the challenge of introducing robotic solutions to servicing wind turbines, which constitute an important renewable solution for the future. The product has gained widespread attention.
Have you ever forgotten your Facebook password? You probably changed it via SMS confirmation using the service created by Infobip. How did this Croatian start-up become a unicorn in digital communication?
The revolution against the Soviets took different and unique forms in each country in the Eastern Bloc. In Estonia - it took the form of choirs.
The biotech industry has always been one of the most promising fields in the Lithuanian economy. But the growth it has experienced in the last decade was unexpected for everyone. Since 2010 it has grown tenfold and now contributes around 2.5% to the country's GDP.
After a scandal of large-scale wine adultery in the vineyard heartland of Austria, it was time to tidy up the fallout. What followed was the successful renaissance of Austrian winemaking.
A new high-speed railroad will connect the Bulgarian city of Ruse with Romania’s capital, Bucharest, bringing passengers, trade, and hopes for more positive developments linking the two neighbors.
Did you know it was a Pole that first painted the faces of the biggest Hollywood stars? And another who developed the formula to save our skin from the scorching sun? Meet five big health and beauty brands with Polish roots.
The American-Slovak startup Tachyum is developing the world's first Universal Processor, which promises to speed up data processing and AI learning and help construct a new supercomputer in Slovakia.
Once home to Soviet army officers tasked with spying on the West, today the Latvian town of Irbene is the site of advanced space research. The VIRAC has given a new lease of life to the two giant radio telescopes it inherited.
Lavender seekers should definitely head to the island of Hvar in Croatia. The small village of Velo Grablje has beautiful lavender fields that look like a spreading purple carpet in late June and early July.
Understanding of countries from Eastern Europe is more often seen in the countries of the central part of the continent than in other regions of the EU.
Countries across the Three Seas region are steadily improving their proficiency in foreign languages, with Croatia and Poland placed among the top European countries when it comes to knowledge of English. But, the region is not done yet.
Have you ever paid attention to where the drugs your doctor prescribed you come from? If so, you may have noticed that a popular antibiotic for throat infections comes from Croatia.
Lithuanian lasers are very well-known worldwide, with an estimated 10% of world scientific lasers made in the country. This is the story of how a small country has become a powerhouse in innovative laser technology.
If only camping trips weren’t so challenging… Latvia’s BeTriton has a solution! Their amphibious electric vehicle allows crossing terrain and water at ease and eliminates the need to pitch a tent at night.
In September 2022, The Three Seas Initiative Investment Fund (3SIIF) acquired a significant interest in BMF Port Burgas, a major port operator in the Port of Burgas on Bulgaria's Black Sea coast.
A tragic accident left a 15-year-old girl with no arms, but Romanian doctors succeeded in reattaching both, performing a rare, almost impossible 20-hour surgery - the first bilateral arm reattachment surgery in Romania.
In Central Europe, the acceptance of traditional EU policies is high. The situation is already different in Western European countries. These two trends will determine the future of the EU.
This may come as a surprise, but Bulgaria was once a computer superpower. Well, at least behind the Iron Curtain. It was all thanks to the genius of Ivan Marangozov, a flute player turned computer engineer credited with the creation of Pravetz, Bulgaria’s first computer.
Since 2016, Romania has sat at the top of a very important poll regarding equality in the workspace. What is Romania's secret to achieving a nearly zero gender pay gap, and what is the reality?
The Czech population is gradually aging, and pension reform is nowhere in sight. Will the state be able to cope with the wave of pensioners, or will the title of the Cohen brothers' film apply: "No Country for Old Men"?
Cyberpunk 2077, a Triple-A class title, created by Polish company CD Project Red, has become a worldwide success with over 14 million copies sold. It’s only one of a number of titles created by companies in the 3Seas region taking the world by storm.
Organs-on-a-chip are not a thing of nightmares. Quite the contrary, Latvian startup, Cellbox Labs, is pioneering a way for this smart technology to revolutionize drug discovery.
With over 95% of the population owning their homes, Romania leads Europe - and possibly the world - in home ownership. How did this happen, what role did communism play, and how is the trend still going strong, even 34 years after the fall of the regime?
Bulgaria hasn’t been blessed with limitless supplies of natural gas, but the country is still looking to play an important role on the gas market.
One of the most ambitious geopolitical projects of our time is getting closer to completion. Investment in communications infrastructure, which is the very foundation of the development of the Three Seas Initiative, is gaining the highest priority.
It started innocently enough. The first presentations of an autonomous land drone designed by the Estonian company Milrem showed a vehicle capable of carrying wounded and supplies. Meanwhile, THeMIS grew claws and saw real combat.
An inconspicuous product from the Czech suburb of Pardubice became the terror of the whole world and was the basis of the armament of the entire Eastern Bloc. What is the story of Semtex?
In 1937 Walter Zapp developed the Minox subminiature camera, a boon to real-life 007s across the world. His invention opened up the possibility of quickly and covertly smuggling countless thousands of pages of secret materials out from behind enemy lines.
The countries in the Central European region are very serious about economic freedom and supporting entrepreneurship. This is confirmed by the Index of Economic Freedom.
Poland is taking steps to position Central Eastern Europe in pole position ahead of the coming competition for market shares in a new sector of the economy.
On April 24, known as Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day, Armenians in Bulgaria will pay their respects to the victims of the systematic murder of up to 1.5 million Armenians, which took place in the Ottoman Empire in the early 20th century.
Yes, there is a way to measure it - many, actually, depending on who is doing the assessment. For many years now, whenever standards of living are measured, Vienna has managed to snag one of the top spots.
Optimatik, a startup from Wrocław, aims to make the most out of the logistics industry’s transition to smart solutions. Its product is aimed at helping coordination between human and robot-run devices in facilities by tracking their movement through a 5G network.
The Czech Republic stands at a critical crossroads for the future of train transport. While some dream of high-speed rail, others fear for the survival of trains. Will the Czechs get their TGV?
The digitalization and development of the Internet have created a new operational domain – cyberspace, vulnerable to hostile actions that only a few countries are prepared to repel. One of them is Estonia.
Yes, the Austrian Post has a special stamp that says "Missent to Austria" for Australian packages. One recent package was finally delivered with five such stamps all lined up in a nice row.
In true start-up fashion, Fermentful took two existing products – buckwheat and kefir – and found how they could work together to create something new. Their plant-based drinks are a gut-and-planet-friendly alternative to the original dairy beverage.
The attitude to history very much distinguishes Central Europe from Western Europe. The war in Ukraine means that these differences will remain present for many years to come.
The premiere of the new season of the Bulgarian edition of "The Bachelor" quickly revealed that many of the women fighting for the heart of the man in the spotlight have one thing in common: an affinity for injectable facial treatments and plastic surgery. What makes Bulgaria a special case when it comes to beauty enhancement?
Slovakia has a tradition of constructing self-propelled Howitzers mounted on car wheels. The current model, Zuzana 2, is an upgrade to a 50-year-old tradition of Howitzer-making and is one of the most modern of its kind in the world currently in use.
Two years ago, there were claims that the Polish Solidarity Transport Hub was unnecessary since the infrastructure of Western Europe is sufficient to transport people and goods over long and short distances. It turns out that the opposite is true.
For the last three years, two driverless buses have been operating on the outskirts of Vienna. The project has so far been a success and a source of inspiration for other potential models in the 3 Seas region, as well as elsewhere.
An innovative student project aimed to bring Brno online, and it succeeded. Not only can you roam the city, but you can also build in it! All thanks to a group of students and Minecraft.
The war in Ukraine is having unexpected effects far and wide. A key source of protein for countries in the Middle East and India, the demand for chickpeas outstripped the supply, with both Russia and Ukraine being among the top producers. Can small players familiar with the crop, like Bulgaria, step up to the challenge?
Estonia is currently testing an online writing tool to speed up the transcription of court sessions. Available to both in-person and online sessions, Salme can accurately write down who said what in the courtroom. Its potential is promising.
God created man; Sam Colt made them equal. Now, the legendary American Colt manufacturer belongs to a Czech company. With this acquisition, Czechs are currently at the global top of gun manufacturing.
Don't be overwhelmed by the word "green" that appears everywhere Slovenia is concerned. "Green" is such a deeply ingrained concept in every aspect of the country that you might get the feeling that even the bricks in Ljubljana's houses will be green. (For the record, they're not).
Central European countries are successful in attracting investment from abroad. But they are also increasingly becoming exporters of capital for investment themselves.
An Austrian company has created a GPS tracker that can be placed on the collars of cats and dogs to bring more safety to pet owners. The smart design of the product switches between satellite and WiFi connection to provide a constant location online.
In less than 30 years, the blind population of the world is expected to increase to over 100 million. dotLumen aims to provide solutions to accommodate, empower, and enable the visually impaired to live life to the fullest.
There are only a handful of countries around the world where Coca-Cola does not reign supreme. Czechia and Slovakia are among them. Meet Kofola, the socialist Coke alternative introduced in the 60s, still holding strong and topping the soft-drink market.
Many most critically acclaimed games were developed in 2022 by Central and Eastern European GameDev studios. What makes them unique are the ideas, the audio-visual design, the technology, and the fresh, inspiring touch.
Necessity is the mother of all inventions. And sometimes, it literally takes a mother to invent an ingenious prop that makes parenting that little bit easier and goes viral. Meet Szumisie.
The study called The tumultuous 2022: how has Russia’s aggression on Ukraine impacted the 3 Seas and Rest of EU-27 countries? presents a collation of key energy sector and economic data on the Three Seas countries compared with Rest of EU-27 countries.
The Tokaj region, famous for its wines that have been prized since the 18th century, became an official appellation in 1737, some two centuries earlier than the famous Burgundy.
People all over the world wear pants, bras, and pajamas made in Latvia. A lot of the garments originate from Liepāja. How did this coastal city become the Northern country’s unofficial capital of lingerie?
A corpse found on the border between Austria and Italy seemed so fresh that the tourists who found it called the police. But it was archeologists would eventually dispute the nationality of the ice man.
Carebot is on the way to implementing AI suggestions into CXS and MMG screenings in hospitals in Czechia. Led by two young enthusiasts, it stepped in at a crucial time to account for the need for innovations in healthcare with an offer of promising conduct.
The Witcher - a successful Netflix series, a mind-boggling game, and… a musical. All of these are spin-offs of a highly witty fantasy saga. So where did it all begin?
Unbeknownst to the majority of people filling the streets of Prague, there is a nuclear reactor in the center of the city. What does it do? Is it dangerous? Or is it a future of commercial use of Small Modular Reactors?
Bulgaria and Romania share 609 kilometers of border. And yet, despite the fact that the Danube River forms as many as 470 km of that border, the two countries are linked only by two bridges. Is this about to change?
Some of Riga's wooden buildings date as far back as the 18th century. Witnesses of wars, power struggles, and transformation, the sturdy structures are a living archive. What is their status today?
Enthusiasm for nuclear energy in Poland is not waning. In addition to the full-size Korean and American reactors, another one will be built. The National Center for Nuclear Research, with the help of Japanese specialists, will design a new experimental reactor.
Due to its history, Central Europe is very sensitive about its own security. That is why since the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, the importance of the EU in the eyes of the people of CEE states has started declining.
The EU’s net-zero goal by 2050 essentially means that it wants to cut greenhouse gas emissions to as close to zero as possible. A tall order, and a major component of that will require more renewables like wind and solar, among others.
Many countries have their own versions of one-ounce gold coins treated as a form of investment. But globally, the most important commemorates Vienna’s dedication to music.
An experiment in testing a fourth brake light in the front of the car, in between lights, is currently underway. The aim is to increase traffic and pedestrian safety to decrease casualties of pedestrians and drivers.
Bulgaria is beginning preparations for minting Euro coins, according to an announcement made by Bulgarian President Rumen Radev. The process of replacing the Lev with the common European currency is gaining momentum, at least in the symbolic sphere.
Most of the Three Seas Countries are considered to be emerging innovators by the European Innovation Scoreboard (EIS). Which ones are they, and what does it mean? Are there any strong innovators among us?
The decline in the number of marriages and the rise in the number of divorces are ongoing trends in Europe. But in CEE countries, this trend is taking a much slower path. And there are examples of countries where it is even reversing.
The people of Central Europe dream of becoming ordinary, average inhabitants of Europe, its middle class. This dream is driving CEE countries - but it is also coming true more and more.
The Hungarian-born startup Colossyan has been developing AI-generated media production, run by AI and machine learning, in a less well-known field of innovation. Its product offers the use of clients’ avatars in video footage.
Three Seas countries are attractive investment destinations for global corporations. Can it also result from the fact that people in the region can work longer hours than their Western European counterparts?
Doftana Prison, located in Prahova county at the foot of the Carpathian Mountains, was notorious in the early 20th century for its harsh confinement of political prisoners, and ultimately became a veritable breeding ground for future leaders of a Red Romania.
CEE countries keep their taxes lower than Western states. In this way, they effectively bridge the gap in economic development between the two parts of Europe.
If you aren’t as well-endowed as you would like, the best strategy is to make optimal use of what you do have – just like Slovenia does with its seemingly insignificant access to the sea.
At only 91 years old, it is not the oldest Zoo in Europe. However, Prague Zoo is repeatedly ranked as one of the best zoological gardens worldwide. Let us give you a virtual tour.
You’ve probably seen or heard the name “Czechia” used instead of “Czech Republic” and may have wondered what the deal was - which name is right? It’s an easy answer: both. Depending on the situation, of course.
Warsaw-based startup Tylko has been promoting its D2C (direct-to-consumer) model in the furniture industry. The model is supported by software that allows for a virtual fitting of the desired furniture into existing rooms and facilities.
Amanita Design’s hit series Samorost, “Machinarium”, and the slightly lesser known “Botanicula” draw from multiple sources of inspiration, including Marcel Duchamp’s Readymades. But they also capture the spirit of Eastern Bloc cartoons, such as “The Little Mole” and “The Tales of Moss and Fern”.
We know – pockets are getting smaller, and wallets are only becoming heavier. This would be no problem for the world’s tiniest print money – which measured a mere 27.5 x 38 mm. How much could you fit in your pocket?
DeepL Translator is known as a widely used online translating service web page and app. However, little is said about its background story and mysterious AI technology, as well as the key protagonist behind the success.
People living in Three Seas countries are much less prone to taking loans than citizens of Western European countries. This division is so strong that it goes beyond simple economic choices.
The 20th century: a time when everyone wanted to touch the sky, but few were thinking about the dangers. Apart from one whose work was centered around the question of, “How can one survive if things go wrong?”
The Czech Republic has often been crowned the most atheistic country in Europe, sometimes even the world. Is it so that all Czechs are non-believers, or is it a bit more complicated?
Czechia is an aviation superpower. It's one of a handful of countries worldwide that can manufacture an entire airplane – from nose to tail. And Czech aviators and pilots are mighty proud of it.
Flying to Bulgaria is easy, but that is not exactly the case when it comes to flying within the country. But work is underway to add six much-needed small facilities to Bulgaria’s minuscule airport network.
Every winter, Estonians can take a shortcut to their islands through the frozen surface of the sea. The roads are even officially recognized by authorities.
Contrary to popular belief, the Airbnb travel model wasn’t invented in the 2000s. Examples of it can be found 60 years earlier with Balkantourist, travel agent in communist Bulgaria.
2022 marks the one-hundredth anniversary of the word “robot,” brought to you by famous Czech science-fiction author Karel Čapek. However, the term, actually coined by his brother, has deep historical ties to centuries of feudal economics.
The issue of atomic energy for Poland is accelerating. Three major players – reactors manufacturers - were fighting for the contract to build Poland's first power plant. The showdown between them was as if modeled on the Game of Thrones intrigues.
There’s a fierce fight brewing between three competitors vying to build the fifth nuclear reactor of the Dukovany Nuclear Power Plant in Czechia. Who is most likely to win?
Friday night. Chic restaurant. Notable chef. You've finally picked a mouthwatering main dish, and the sommelier recommends pairing it with... a Polish wine? Seems crazy, right? Not if a new crop of Polish winemakers has anything to do with it.
If this grapevine could talk, oh... the stories it could tell. Wars, plagues, and fires haven't been able to stop one remarkably resilient vine in Maribor, Slovenia, that is still producing fruit - and wine - at a ripe 400 years old!
Until 1989, Europe was partitioned by the Berlin Wall. Now, it is divided by the Great Wall of China. CEE countries are looking at Beijing with caution, but Western European states are looking for business opportunities with China.
Wherever you are flying with Czech Airlines, it will always be OK. Why? Because OK is the Czech Airlines callsign. Let us tell you the story of the fifth-oldest airline in the world.
Those traveling to Europe often think it will be sufficient to bring along some Euro, but this is not always the case. So what currency do you need when you find yourself in the Three Seas States?
Polish startup Vasco Electronics has been actively improving upon its technology for the past 10 years. Its device translates conversation, text, and speech into more than 70 languages and is sold all around the world.
The sources from which we generate electricity have become the center of attention of every European in light of recent events. Austria's energy mix is one to envy, and here's why.
The new railway network will connect all of Poland’s larger cities with a mega-airport near Warsaw as well as connect Poland with neighboring countries.
Households in Central & Eastern Europe are still in the process of building financial wealth. It makes these economies vulnerable to adverse shocks, but it also makes the region an attractive investment destination.
Austrian startup Blue Planet Ecosystems has been presenting its product on efficient, bio, eco-friendly, and sustainable fishing production called LARA systems (Land-based Automated Recirculating Aquaculture). The product aims to address future food shortages.
Some say that cultural divides can be explained by the kind of alcohol we imbibe. But is there any actual distinction between "vodka Europe" vs. "beer Europe" vs. "wine Europe"?
The architecture MasterPrize award is open for entries from architects at every stage of their careers. It is considered the second most important out of the five leading international awards in architecture. This year, Poles were among the winners.
A Slovenian-based high-tech startup has been developing a complex and self-learning driving test simulator with the aim of measuring conscious and unconscious driver behavior features to make driving safer and more inclusive.
The Czech Republic has recorded a gradual increase in the number of children born in the country - proof that an effective pro-natalist policy can be pursued. It seems that the key is maintaining respect for the value of the family.
The Ruse-Varna railway line, the original final stretch of Europe’s Orient Express, is about to be modernized, benefiting Bulgaria, the EU, and the Three Seas Initiative.
The history of sugar is not as straightforward as a mere ingredient for sweetening your tea or cakes. At various points in history, it has been used as medicine, a spice, and even a symbol of both royalty and oppression. The invention of the sugar cube only adds to the story.
While Bulgaria hasn't exactly been the first country to come to mind when one thinks about the most fertile ground for startups, that is all about to change.
Created in 1766, Vienna’s Prater is one of the oldest public leisure spots on the continent. The amusement park in the center of Prater began operations in the 18th century.
Matsuko is a Slovak startup that offers a unique experience of communicating through holograms. The application they developed creates holograms of actual persons who can communicate in a virtual space and encounter each other as if it was real.
The Lithuanian medical startup Oxipit has harnessed AI and Machine Learning into radiology. By scanning and analyzing chest radiographs (CXRs), ChestEye and ChestLink, the apps detect pulmonary module signs of pneumothorax and other lung diseases.
Doesn’t it seem that whenever you get sick, there never are any appointments available? Doctor.One, a Polish start-up, developed a unique solution to this problem. So much so that it is heavily invested in, and its future is painted in bright colors.
Ho! Ho! Ho! With the merriest time of year around the corner, the cities of Europe are getting into the festive spirit. What better way to do so than by eating, dancing, and Christmas shopping? What are the best destinations to travel to?
Next year, Czechia will celebrate 45 years since the first Czech entered space. Even though the country is not a space superpower, it has plans for a base on the Moon. And a lot more!
Hungarian-American startup SignAll has been intensely working for over a decade to invent the SignAll Lab tool, which translates American Sign Language (ASL) into American English.
The Hungarian startup SEON Technologies, currently based in London, has introduced an app that determines the risk of online internet profiles. The product became very popular among companies and casual users as the world went online during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Ivo Boscarol is a Slovenian entrepreneur and aircraft designer with a great success story. Throughout his continuing success, he has remained true to his birthplace and dedicated a lot of made money to local causes.
Developing since the 1980s, Latvia's sea buckthorn industry is now well and truly ripe. Not only is export on the rise, but growers are creating new products to introduce people to the vitamin-packed berry and its powers.
Polish citizens, who found themselves under a foreign rule for 123 years, were often forced to leave their native lands in pursuit of opportunities unavailable to them under new rulers. Collectively, they are referred to as Polonia.
In the past, people were grateful if there was a qualified doctor in their town or village. These days, it is doctors who are grateful for 5-star reviews.
There is undoubtedly more optimism in Central Europe, looking at the future through much brighter glasses. This applies to the labor market - but not only.
Generation after generation of Bulgarians was raised with eyes on the prize: Owning a home. With prices in Bulgaria reaching new heights, has the time come to let go of that dream?
Although interwar Poland had unrealized ambitions to become a colonial empire, the truth is that at some point, in fact, it was one. Here’s the surprising history of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth as a seafaring metropolis.
The Czech City for the Future project shows one options of how people will live in 2050. The goal is to make every city a living organism rather than a sea of concrete buildings.
Sometimes referred to as the European Thanksgiving, Sant Martin’s day is a feast that unites many countries in the region. Like every good party, it is marked with traditional specialties – wine, goose, and sweet pastries.
The World EXPO is an always an event unlike any other. However, the EXPO of 1958 was particularly special for Czechoslovakia because it won the Golden Medal, despite going through the darkest times of the Communist regime.
The countries of Central Europe still have not shaken off the stigma left on the region by the two forms of totalitarianism that dominated the 20th century: Nazism and Communism.
Have you ever seen a drone? People use them for taking photos, videotaping, or just for the simple fun of flying. But how about a drone postman or drone firefighter? Just Czech inventions.
Fish farming in Czechia has a tradition dating back to the early Middle Ages. It helped the landlocked country to secure enough fish supply. What started as a food variety necessity became part of national identity and Czech culture.
A new Slovak startup, DNA ERA, generates unique insights from DNA saliva extracts. Whereas most businesses that conduct DNA analysis offer information about family history, DNA ERA looks at hereditary diseases, physical aptitudes, optimal nutrition, and other clues stored in our DNA.
There are many types of capitals - like business capital (London, UK), love capital (Paris, France), or food capital (San Sebastian, Spain). Such flashy tags are bound to attract tourists from all over the world. Do conventional capitals stand a chance?
Koffeco, a sustainably-minded science-based startup from Latvia, sees spent coffee grounds as a resource. The team transforms organic waste into new products, contributing to a circular economy.
The Czech family-run startup Ullmanna is one of few to have developed an AI machine for agriculture. The flagship product, an intra-row weeding machine called NEWMAN, removes weeds manually faster than you can even spot them.
Women in Central Europe have long played an important role in the home and also in public spaces. Centuries of fighting for independence, defending against the Nazis and the communists have meant that women in this part of Europe have emancipated themselves in many fields relatively quickly compared to other parts of the world.
Central European countries were the first to experience the shock of neighboring an open, full-scale war. But watching their reaction also shows that they will be the first to adapt to the new reality.
Eponymous with both luxury supercars and the designer of the Beetle, the most renowned democratic car of the first half of the 20th century, Ferdinand Porsche is the most important Czech-Austrian contribution to automotive history.
For the past eight years, a Polish inventor, Łukasz Koźlik, has been fulfilling his dream of building a robot that he hopes will eventually become our best housework buddy.
Natural as it is now, the existence of two separate states of Czechia and Slovakia is a rather new thing in the region. Here’s how it happened.
In March 1946, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill delivered a speech declaring the new, post-war division of Europe. His view on the new world order was strict, and a sharp boundary of the Iron Curtain turned out to be one of the most prolific ideas in modern history.
Born in Piaski Szlacheckie, an inconspicuous village near Lublin, Poland, Antoni Patek made his name as part of the most prestigious brand in the history of watchmaking. A true trailblazer in the industry.
Spanning from the Netherlands to Baltic Countries, this important trade and geopolitical project had an enormous impact on Europe’s history. Consequently, some seaside cities across Europe are more like each other than to other cities in their respective countries.
In October 2022, Russian forces held a sham vote on annexing parts of Ukrainian territory to Russia. In response, the Czechs invented a claim to the Russian enclave on the Baltic Sea. Its basis was simple: Kaliningrad, formerly known as Königsberg, was named after the Bohemian king.
This anti-virus service has been leading the cybersecurity market for over 21 years – and I bet you had no idea it was a Romanian company that provided it. Bitdefender was Romania’s first ever IT start-up and the world’s leader in cybersecurity. And it all started by accident.
Beautiful lavender fields are the perfect Instagram photo-op. Just pay attention to the location tag: You’re not in the south of France but in Bulgaria. In fact, lavender is so prevalent in Bulgaria that it has been competing with France for years now for the title of top producer.
Over the last several years, the Three Seas countries have seen astonishing success in exports. In order to continue that success, what is needed now is diversification.
During Stalinist times, this now-Estonian town evaporated from the map as it turned into a militarized zone and a source of uranium ore for the Soviet nuclear program.
Scientists around the world are sounding alarm bells about the dwindling number of bees. With this in mind, Latvian startup BeeSage has created a monitoring system to give beekeepers the tools and information they need to ensure their hives can thrive.
Lithuanians brag about the mildness of their native language. So in order to keep it clean, they simply use either Russian or English whenever they want to say something particularly naughty.
History has its way of creeping into the present as it is fused with certain images, sounds, gestures, or customs. For locals, they’re quite obvious (or culturally embedded), but they may not be as clear to those visiting.
Commonly known as a "Maluch” (Eng: "the little one”), the Fiat 126p was a car that Poles dreamed of for decades. Even though it's been out of production for years, it is still attracting unexpected admirers. Like Tom Hanks (yes - that one).
George of Poděbrady, the king of Bohemia in the 15th Century, came up with a crazy idea. He dreamed of creating an organization to include all European nations. They would hold important meetings on an international level and vote on topics in a parliament-like manner. Crazy right?
Standing on the street corner, you see a car pass next to you on the road. With a glance, you see a winged arrow logo - a clear sign of a car manufactured by Škoda, an automotive company based in Czechia, which sells cars across the globe.
The iconic Palace of Culture and Science is a monumental skyscraper in Warsaw's city center, now considered somewhat controversial due to its Stalinist genesis. Even so, it turns out that Varsovians now have a soft spot for this cultural landmark and do not want to see it demolished.
For decades in the 20th century, Bulgarians and Romanians, two neighboring nations sharing 609 kilometers of border, knew little of each other. Today, 15 years after the two countries became members of the larger European family, things are changing for the better.
Prince Constantin Brâncoveanu built this holy place as a place of worship. Today, it is a UNESCO world heritage site that stands tall not just as a meaningful clerical site but also as Romania’s most emblematic piece of Brancovan architecture.
In one scene of "Return of the Jedi," a protocolar android addresses a person in Polish. Was Jabba the Hut's servant a Socialist economic migrant, or did American producers just want to impress viewers with an exotic language?
There are many things the Czech Republic is very well known for, one of them being Czech Glass. To be more specific, Bohemian Crystal. The production of Bohemian Crystal, from the Bohemia and Silesia regions, is a rich centuries-old tradition that is still thriving today.
Cardiovascular diseases are the most common cause of death, according to WHO (2020). Powerful Medical, a new Slovak startup, hopes to reduce these deaths by introducing an AI-based diagnostic tool that detects cardiovascular conditions and provides recommendations tailored to patients' needs.
The old Slavic custom of celebrating the harvest is still holding on strong in Poland. Dożynki, as it is called, is celebrated nationwide and provides a great way for villages to remind the city dwellers of the richness hidden in the countryside.
CEE countries lost almost 50 years stuck on the wrong side of the Iron Curtain. Although the Berlin Wall fell more than three decades ago, they still have not managed to make up for the years wasted by communism.
S.A.W.E.R. is a strange, shipping container-looking device that works miracles. What is this miracle, you ask? Well, it creates water from desert air! That's pretty miraculous; what do you say? And it gets even better: it runs on solar energy!
Countries with the right balance between services and manufacturing economies are more resilient to various shocks. This is the lesson from the crises in the last two years, and Central Europe has done its homework.
When World War Two ended in Central Europe and the Iron Curtain, as famously called by Winston Churchill, descended “from Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic,” the eastern side of the curtain began filling with monuments of victory. In August 2022, yet another of those monuments fell.
For three years now, residents of the small municipality of Stamboliyski in Southern Bulgaria have been using public transport for free. While the idea introduced by Mayor Georgi Maradzhiev is hardly new, Stamboliyski remains Bulgaria’s only town boasting free public transportation.
Innovativeness is a glamourized factor that is supposed to cure all the economic problems of the countries and the world. But do all countries need to be innovative to grow their economies?
Most people assume that AI is a product of our time while, in fact, engineers have been seeking to discover it for centuries. The vision of designing a machine superior to the human mind caught global attention as early as the 18th century.
The results are in, and if you’re a salad lover heading to Bulgaria, you’re up for a treat. In TasteAtlas’s 50 Best Salads ranking, four Bulgarian salads make the cut. Ovcharska (Shepherd's) landed the #1 spot, with Snezhanka and the famous Shopska Salad – also in the top 10.
People, goods, and mail were moved by air for the first time at the beginning of the 20th century. And the first regular route for long-distance air travel was between European cities in Austria-Hungary.
A bob. The symbol of strong femininity. Famously used in a short story of innocence lost, written by an American writer. However, Fitzgerald’s tale would never have been without that iconic haircut. And it so happens that a Pole wielded the scissors.
Slovenia is literally flowing with honey. Since the 11th century, beekeeping has been an essential part of Slovenian culture, an inspiration for art and design, and the backbone of local tourism. Professional beekeeping is so rooted in Slovenia that one in two hundred Slovenes is a beekeeper.
Most of the Three Seas countries are not heavily indebted. However, they are importers of capital, which must be taken into account when making economic policy decisions.
When Austrian and Polish soldiers captured Turkish positions after the Battle of Vienna, they thought that the tiny, brown seeds they found were horse fodder. However, soon enough, they were all enjoying a new kind of brew that was exported across Europe.
It would be an understatement to say that Polish company Creotech Instruments has been moving at light speed since its founding in 2012. The company has grown from startup to space giant in a mere decade, with plans to go public on the Warsaw Stock Exchange this summer.
For many years Europe has been deeply divided over attitudes to war. Russia's aggression in Ukraine showed that Central European countries were more realistic about the risk of armed conflict.
Thanks to a combination of the Eastern Bloc’s economic structure, effective export deals, and last but not least, great products, Hungarian bus manufacturer Ikarus was able to dominate the Eastern Bloc’s transportation business - and even some of the West’s, too.
The RPG game “This War of Mine” about civilian life in under-siege Sarajevo was the first videogame in the world to ever make it into school curriculum.
Is this real life? Is this a fantasy? In Croatia, former Yugoslavia, you can explore abandoned underground airbases. Some of them, like Željava, even have a history of daring escapes from the war-torn country.
What to do with an overgrown piece of land in a bustling capital city whose residents live mostly in apartments? One active community in Riga founded urban gardens, illustrating the potential of transforming derelict plots into added value for a city.
In 1977, a vinyl record featuring the Bulgarian folk song "Izlel ye Delyo Haydutin" (Eng: Come out rebel Delyo) began its journey aboard the Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 spacecrafts. The song's journey continues to this day.
Central European countries have become hubs for the automotive industry in recent years. Now, we are entering an era of turbulence when traditional business models will be deeply reshuffled, creating challenges and possibilities in the automotive sector.
Are you looking for sunny skies and sandy beaches? There's a gem hiding in plain sight in a spot you might not have thought to look. And the best part: fewer tourists. For now, at least.
For many years, post-communist Central Europe could only watch other regions of the world prospering thanks to the rapid development of the digital market. Oh, how times have changed.
To easily navigate through Central Europe, you should know at least a few languages and no fewer than two scripts. The border between Latin and Cyrillic scripts is one of culture and politics.
Although voted never to be activated in the aftermath of the Chornobyl meltdown, Austria’s Zwentendorf Nuclear Power Plant remains in good condition as a research facility and a unique film set.
A vital part of Romanian-Polish trade depends on the automotive industry. Consequently, the automotive industry's evolution and how the two countries adapt to industry transformation will significantly influence the future trade structure of goods between the two countries.
The video game developer, famous for its series, “The Witcher," has single-handedly turned the Polish gaming industry into a high-tech powerhouse and a global tool of cultural influence.
Energy prices are rising with no sign of stopping. Economic sanctions against Russia have closed off one of the largest sources of European energy. Now begins the debate over what to do. The answer is simple, and it comes from Czechia: Small Modular Reactors.
With grocery stores overflowing with produce from the other side of the world and “all-natural” products in plastic packaging at every turn, it’s no wonder that even the savviest consumers find it hard to make sustainable choices. Austrian startup Inoqo aims to make that a little easier.
We all know the success stories of companies that started in garages. Průša Research's story is similar to those of other multimillion-dollar companies. From humble garage beginnings in 2012 to the second-largest 3D printer manufacturer in the world.
Thanks to massive advancements in technology, distance is becoming less and less important. In April 2021, a group of doctors from Lublin became the first in Europe to bring surgery to a realm so far only imagined in science-fiction novels.
3SeasEurope spoke with Beata Daszyńska-Muzyczka, the Chairperson of the Supervisory Board of the Three Seas Initiative Investment Fund, about her thoughts on the 3SI intra-regional cooperation and what can the Initiative do for the Western Balkans 6 and Ukraine.
The beginning of the war in Ukraine overlapped with the annual seasonal increase in gas consumption and the diminishing amount of gas in storage. Could a lack of supply of this valuable natural resource mean an unusually cold winter for millions of Europeans?
Laser beams from a small Central Eastern European country are beginning to reach the farthest corners of the world. How did Lithuania become a giant in the laser industry, and how have their lasers become such an export hit, playing a significant in their economy?
Veriff, the company founded in 2015 by the 27-year-old prodigy Kaarel Kotkas, provides technology that enables online identification through a simple selfie and is quickly taking over new markets.
Spanning an impressive 249 meters, Ventas Rumba is the widest waterfall on the Old Continent. This width makes up for its relatively modest 2-meter height. Each year on midsummer's eve, the waterfall is the setting for a stark sight - as in a stark naked one - as revelers streak across the nearby bridge in the moonlight.
The main engine for the Central Eastern European (CEE) economies is foreign investment, attracted by cheap labor. Are rising wages leading to a loss of competitiveness, and, if so, how should the economic development model adapt to this new reality?
A report authored by the International Monetary Fund in late 2020 remains the most detailed account of the size of the infrastructure gap between the western and eastern parts of the EU.
Millions of people worldwide wear contact lenses every day. However, not many of these people know the origin story of this simple-looking yet genius invention.
Hungarian company Tresorit grabbed the world's attention in 2013 when it offered hackers a $50,000 prize to the person who could break the layers of defenses protecting their startup. After a year and a half, nobody had cracked the new end-to-end encryption service.
Who would have guessed that the Damask rose, brought from Persia through Syria to Bulgaria back when the country was part of the Ottoman Empire, would one day acquire cult status? It's so essential that Bulgaria is even called the "Land of Roses." And for good reason.
With continuous pushes from interest groups, the public, and the European Union for greener and more sustainable energy, the Czech government plans to build new nuclear reactors. But this is easier said than done.
It’s always good to know your neighbor. This is almost certainly the case in the village of Hum, Croatia, which boasts fewer than 30 current residents. Besides its tiny size, its other claim to fame is a secret recipe supposedly passed down by Celtic Druids some two thousand years ago.
At first sight, this village near the town of Popovo in northeastern Bulgaria looks like any other village in the area. And yet, it isn't. Welcome to Palamartsa, population 300, including 120 residents from 23 countries. Is this Bulgaria's most diverse village? Possibly.
If grabbing a to-go cup of coffee at your local café is your daily ritual, you’re not alone. One company in Bulgaria wants to make that habit as sustainable as possible with their edible, biodegradable wafer cups.
After joining the Réseau Art Nouveau Network in 2012, Oradea, Romania, received the title of Best Art Nouveau Destination within just ten years. How did it achieve this? And more importantly, why is everyone falling in love with this small city on the river?
Quantum physics is not the most intuitive of scientific disciplines. The group of people who can grasp its essence is quite elite and includes a large proportion of Polish scientists. Will Polish scientists trigger a long-awaited quantum revolution?
Economic relations between Three Seas countries and Ukraine before the war were strong compared to other EU countries. This provides a solid foundation on which future relations can be strengthened.
While cars made in the Soviet Union were often mocked by westerners, communist Bulgaria had a hidden gem - an electric vehicle with far superior capabilities to similar projects developed at the time by Ford and Hitachi.
Today, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia are the most vulnerable members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Would these countries be able to defend themselves against threats from the east?
Can consumers and businesses in Bulgaria come together and join forces in fighting food waste? Is it possible to eat delicious food, save money, and eat with a cause? The answer to all of this is yes - because FoodoBox is making it happen.
We asked Latvia’s Ambassador for the Three Seas Initiative, H.E. Edgars Bondars, about Latvia’s vision for this year’s Three Seas Initiative summit.