He obtained a doctorate at the University of Vienna in 1904 and taught at a middle school in Vienna from 1904 to 1907. He then taught at Brüx from 1907 to 1910, and at Brünn from 1910 to 1913. Following military service as a captain during the First World War, he returned as a schoolteacher to Vienna, where in 1928 he was named director of the school. During his career, he took research trips to Bosnia-Herzegovina, Dalmatia, Italy and Turkey.
He published the first modern monograph on Braconidae: Opuscula braconolocica (4 parts, 1925–37). A specialist of this group, he also made contributions regarding the systematics of other parasitic Hymenoptera.
- Nachruf und Publikationsliste Josef Fahringer aus: Zeitschrift der Wiener Entomologischen Gesellschaft 36. Jahrgang, 1951, 75-77[permanent dead link]
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