Styria (German: Steiermark [ˈʃtaɪɐˌmaʁk] (listen); Croatian and Slovene: Štajerska; Hungarian: Stájerország; Czech: Štýrsko; Slovak: Štajersko) is a state, or Bundesland, located in the southeast of Austria. In area it is the second largest (after Lower Austria) of the nine Austrian federated states, covering 16,401 km2 (6,332 sq mi). It borders Slovenia (Carinthia Statistical Region, Drava Statistical Region and Mura Statistical Region) and the Austrian states of Upper Austria, Lower Austria, Salzburg, Burgenland, and Carinthia. The capital city is Graz which had 276,526 inhabitants at the beginning of 2015.
The March of Styria derived its name from the original seat of its ruling Otakar dynasty: Steyr, in today's Upper Austria. In German, the area is still called "Steiermark" while in English the Latin name "Styria" is used. The ancient link between Steyr and Styria is also apparent in their nearly identical coats of arms, a white Panther on a green background.
The term "Upper Styria" (German: Obersteiermark) used by an Austrian refers to the northern and northwestern parts of the federal-state (districts Liezen, Murau, Judenburg, Knittelfeld, Leoben, Bruck an der Mur, and Mürzzuschlag). The term "West Styria" (Weststeiermark) is used for the districts to the west of Graz (Voitsberg, Deutschlandsberg, western part of the district Leibnitz); the districts east of Graz (Weiz, Hartberg, Feldbach, Fürstenfeld, and Radkersburg) are referred to as "East Styria" (Oststeiermark). The western and eastern parts of the district Graz-Umgebung may or may not be considered parts of West and East Styria, respectively. The southern parts of the Duchy of Styria, which have formed part of Yugoslavia and later Slovenia since 1918 (with the exception of World War II), were (and sometimes colloquially still are) referred to as "Lower Styria" (Untersteiermark; Slovene: Štajerska).
During early Roman times, Styria was inhabited by Celtic tribes. After its conquest by the Romans, the eastern part of what is now Styria was part of Pannonia, while the western one was included in Noricum. During the Barbarian invasions, it was conquered or crossed by the Visigoths, the Huns, the Ostrogoths, the Rugii, and the Lombards. Slavs, who first were under the domination of the Avars, settled in the valleys of this country (around 600 and onwards). At the same time Bavarian people (under Frankish domination) began to expand their area to the south and east and absorbed the Slavic population.
In 1180 Styria separated from the Duchy of Carinthia and became a Duchy of its own; in 1192 the Austrian Duke Leopold V became also Duke of Styria. Later, Styria formed the central part of Inner Austria.
Styria developed culturally and economically under Archduke John of Austria between 1809 and 1859.
In 1918, after World War I, it was divided into a northern section (forming what is the current Austrian state), and a southern one, called Lower Styria, inhabited mostly by ethnic Slovenians, and which was annexed to Yugoslavia, and later became part of Slovenia.
As elsewhere in the developed world, there has been a shift away from the manufacturing sector towards the service sector in Styria. This has had negative consequences for the industrial regions of upper Styria which have suffered a steady decline in population in recent years.
In 2004 Styria had the strongest economic growth rate in Austria at 3.8%—mainly due to the Graz area which saw strong economic growth that year and has continued to grow in economic and population terms since then.
Styria is home to more than 150 clean technology companies, of which one dozen are world technology leaders in their field. The revenue of Styrian cleantech companies totals €2.7 billion. This equals to 8 percent of the Gross Regional Product (GRP), and is one of the highest concentrations of leading clean technology companies in Europe. The companies have an average (real) growth rate of 22 percent per year—well above the worldwide cleantech market growth of 18 percent per year. The region created roughly 2,000 additional green jobs in 2008 alone.
- Liezen (with the subdistrict Gröbming)
The state had been a stronghold of the Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) since 1945. Graz however is a stronghold of the far left Communist Party (KPÖ). The governor (Austrian political term: Landeshauptmann) has usually been an ÖVP member.
In the 2005 elections for state parliament the Social Democrats (SPÖ) under their regional chairman Franz Voves won the majority after the ÖVP had damaged its credibility through scandals and the secession of a high-ranking party member who took part in the 2005 elections after setting up his own party. In these elections, the KPÖ also received many votes after it had gained much popularity through its role in local politics in Graz during the preceding few years. The two right-wing populist parties, the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ) and the Alliance for the Future of Austria (BZÖ), failed to win seats.
In subsequent elections in 2010 and 2015, the Social Democrats, the Austrian People's Party, and the Communist Party each lost between one fourth and one third of their shares of the vote relative to 2005. The Freedom Party grew from 4.6 percent to 26.8 percent. The current government of Styria is a coalition of Social Democrats and People's Party, with each party holding 4 seats of the 8 seats available. The governor, Hermann Schützenhöfer, is a representative of the People's Party. His deputy, Michael Schickhofer, is a Social Democrat.
- Palman (fl. 1310–1363), knight and mercenary commander of the Serbian Empire
- Karl Böhm, (1894-1981), conductor
- Johann Joseph Fux (1660–1741), composer and music theorist, wrote Gradus ad Parnassum – a composition manual used by Beethoven and Mozart
- Archduke John of Austria (1782–1859)
- Johann Puch (1862–1914), founded Johann Puch Erste Steiermärkische Fahrrad-Fabriks-Aktiengesellschaft at Graz in 1899.
- Peter Rosegger (1843–1918), honoured poet
- Jochen Rindt (1942–1970), Formula 1 World Champion
- Bert Isatitsch (1911–1994), first president of the International Luge Federation
- Frank Stronach (b. 1932), founder of Magna International, billionaire
- Dr. Helmut Marko (b. 1943), former racing driver
- Klaus Maria Brandauer (b. 1944), actor and director
- Dietrich Mateschitz (b. 1944), founder and CEO of Red Bull, billionaire
- Elfriede Jelinek (b. 1946), Nobel Prize in Literature winner
- Arnold Schwarzenegger (b. 1947), bodybuilder, film actor and former Governor of California
- Wolfgang Muthspiel (b. 1965), jazz composer and guitarist
- Thomas Muster (b. 1967), former World No. 1 tennis player
- Ulla Weigerstorfer (b. 1967), Miss Austria 1987 and Miss World 1987
- Renate Götschl (b. 1975), alpine skiing World Champion
- Elisabeth Görgl (b. 1981), professional alpine skier
- Eva Rueber-Staier (b. 1951), Miss Austria 1969, Miss World 1969
- Robert Stolz (1880-1975), composer born in Graz
- Getty Kaspers (b. 1948), lead vocals of Dutch band Teach-In, who won the 1975 Eurovision Song Contest.
- Conchita Wurst (b. 1988), winner Eurovision Song Contest 2014, European superstar
- Christoph Strasser (b. 1982), champion ultra cyclist