Digital Government podcast

By e-Governance Academy

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Description

Welcome to e-Governance Academy’s podcast to discover the future of governance. e-Governance Academy has assisted digital transformation globally in more than 130 countries. Our experts will share their insights and worldwide examples on how digital technology could benefit every society. Tune in for the digital government podcast every Wednesday!

Episode Date
Building a future-ready society in Sarawak, Malaysia
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In Borneo Island, Malaysia, the largest of the 13 states making up the country has an ambitious plan – to turn the region into a digital economy powerhouse of the area. Through the works of the Sarawak Digital Economy Corporation (SDEC) as its implementing agency, the government in the region is driving initiative to give the state a digital economy and society. During his last visit to Tallinn, we caught up with the Chairmen of the SDEC, Mohamad Morsidi, to hear about the premises and priorities of this transformative journey, and what inspires them in Estonia's digital journey. Turn in!

Sep 28, 2022
Mexico's take on digital transformation
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Our interviews with Chief Information Officers continue, and after Siim Sikkut (former CIO of Estonia) and Barry Lowry (CIO of Ireland), we are excited to feature Yolanda Martinez on this podcast episode. Martinez held the national CIO and Digital Strategy Coordination posts in Mexico for six years – five for the first, one for the latter. During that time, the Mexican public administration achieved terrific results, to name (really just) a few, exponentially increasing availability and access to the Internet, and reshaping the digital provision and use of public services.

Today, she is Overall Lead for the GovStack initiative at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). Let’s see how approaching public sector innovation through building blocks can help governments accelerate digital transformation. Tune in!

Jun 29, 2022
Why cybersecurity capacity of the Western Balkan countries should matter?
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The Western Balkan Digital Security Forum took place in Tallinn and online on June 15, 2022, bringing together leaders and experts in cybersecurity to discuss developments and challenges on the topic in the region. Merle Maigre, e-Governance Academy’s own Senior Expert on Cybersecurity, joins us in this episode to explore some of the takeaways from the high-level meeting, and how to support six Balkan countries in building strategic cybersecurity capacity.
Tune in!

Learn more about the Western Balkan Digital Security Forum here.

Jun 22, 2022
Why does digital vulnerability matter?
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Let’s face it – we are more used to talk about the results achieved through digital transformation, its success stories and business cases, rather than drawbacks or failures. Despite, in any case, a growing trend of re-humanizing digitalization processes, with private change-makers and CIOs increasingly talking about drawbacks and lessons learnt too.

But some needs still might fall between the cracks of a bright narrative. That is why, both through our activities and at this year’s e-Governance Conference, we introduced the topic of digital vulnerability. Kristina Mänd, Senior Expert on e-Democracy at eGA, delves deeper into the theme in this podcast episode. According to her addressing digital vulnerabilities could be considered as a measure of government effectiveness and performance in delivering public services.  The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera.
Tune in!

Jun 15, 2022
Tech beyond code with a digital sociologist
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In today's episode, we invite you to explore the United Kingdom's government approach to designing public digital services for citizens with Lisa Talia Moretti. How do they design services that actually work for all – with their diverse needs, vulnerabilities, and behaviours in society? 

Tune in to find out! 

Jun 08, 2022
Setting the digital agenda in Western Balkan countries
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In the Western Balkans, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and governments are on a quest to increase civic engagement in the digital agenda. Take all the initials of this task, ICEDA, and you have the ongoing project that e-Governance Academy is currently involved in within the region.

Recently, stakeholders took the chance to visit Tallinn for a study visit. We caught up with two representatives from both sides, government and CSOs, to talk about the state of digitalization in the five subject countries: North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Kosovo, and Albania.

Hear it from Snežana Nikčević, National Project Coordinator for NGO 35mm from Montenegro, and Admirim Aliti, Minister of Information Society and Administration from North Macedonia, in this episode. Tune in! 

Jun 01, 2022
Making interoperability a reality in Djibouti
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In the Horn of Africa there is yet another blue pin on the world map of interoperability supported by X-Road technology. The Government of Djibouti via ANSIE has recently completed the implementation of the data exchange platform, marking another step toward more efficient and effective public service delivery.

On e-Governance Academy’s side, Programme Director of Technology Heiko Vainsalu has managed and dealt hands-on with the project. In this episode of the podcast, we outline some insights into how the Djiboutian government did it, relevant points of strength, and recommendations to move forward. Sounds interesting? Tune in!

May 25, 2022
Five reflections on effective digital government from Ireland
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In today's episode, we take a  look at how does effective digital transformation look from above? From the perspective of those who need to inspire, guide, and organize teams so that plans become policies, and then action. We are talking about Government CIOs, a role whose specifics we explored already in an episode with Siim Sikkut on 27 April.

Let’s take now a look at five lessons learnt through the lens of Barry Lowry, Chief Information Officer of the Irish Government, and Chief Adviser to the government on all things digital.

One by one, we present the main takeaways from his experience, in a wide-ranging conversation from user journey design to tech, regulation, and the meaning of innovation.

The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera.
Tune in!

May 17, 2022
What’s next for digital public services in Estonia?
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The wait could not have been faster. Just one week to go to the e-Governance Conference 2022, to discuss resilient and seamless governance with high-level government representatives, experts, and academics. So let us do the honours with an introduction, and a look forward, from Estonia.

Luukas Kristjan Ilves, freshly appointed Chief Information Officer of the Government of Estonia, features in this last episode of the podcast building up to the conference. What’s next in Estonia in terms of public service delivery? Tune in!

Interested in more? Register now and join us online at https://2022.egovconference.ee/!


May 04, 2022
Lessons from effective digital leaders. Part one
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Siim Sikkut barely needs any introduction. 17 years in the civil service, of which five as Chief Information Officer of the Government of Estonia. Throughout this time, many of our readers and listeners have had the chance to meet him, or hear from his team about what a constant process of digital transformation looks like.

At the upcoming e-Governance Conference in May, he will be among the changemakers to tell us what it takes to be effective digital leaders – based on his own and others’ experiences. Sikkut, in fact, has also spoken to 20 colleagues in leading digital government strategies and collected findings and reflections in a not-to-miss, upcoming book.

In the build-up to the e-Governance Conference, we caught up with him to give you an introduction to what is set to be one of the most interesting sessions on Day 2. In the episode, he shares also his two lessons for digital leaders. Tune in!
 
The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera. 

Interested in more? Join the
e-Governance Conference on 10 – 12 May to listen to the keynote of Siim Sikkut and panel discussion ‘ Digital Government Excellence: Lessons from Effective Digital Leadersfeaturing  Barry Lowry, Chief Information Officer for the Irish Government, and Siim Sikkut.

Apr 26, 2022
Why is Digital Sovereignty Important for Governments?
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Less than a month to go to the 2022 e-Governance Conference. To mark this countdown milestone, we called back a known voice of the Digital Government Podcast and the Conference, introducing the ever-more-pressing theme of digital sovereignty. 

Taking the floor is Paul Timmers, a scholar at various European universities and former director at the European Commission for e‑government, health and ageing, future cities, and many more things digital. 

With increased digitalization, governments are met with new and changing sets of challenges – over trust, service delivery, and cybersecurity. Here is a sneak peek into what his keynote and the panel discussion he will moderate will sound like, with a great conversation on current and fundamental issues urging decision-makers to keep sovereignty in focus for the information age.

Interested in more? Join the e-Governance Conference on 10 - 12 May to listen to the keynote of Paul Timmers and panel discussion ' Next step: Digital Sovereignty – How Is it Possible?' featuring Michel Paulin, CEO of OVHcloud and Lisa Talia Moretti, Digital Sociologist at the Ministry of Justice of the United Kingdom. 


Apr 14, 2022
Let’s hear it from African journalists: digital innovations in Africa
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For this episode of the Digital Government Podcast, we figuratively fly with our microphones to Africa. Specifically, to Kenya and Nigeria – where winners of the first Africa D4D Journalism Competition are based. 175 journalists from 35 countries participated, signalling a great response to the call submissions made by the African Union – European Union (AU-EU) Digital for Development (D4D) Hub project.

Labour markets and tech talent, agriculture and climate issues, telehealth and maternal care. These were the topics of the articles that won the first three prizes, all with digital tools and technology as the common denominator. We caught up with the three winners – Daniel Adeyemi (Nigeria), Wesley Langat (Kenya), and Beth Karuana (Kenya) – to hear about their work and the topics addressed.

Tune in!

Interested in the digital development of African countries?  Join the discussion 'Laying Ground for Digital Services: Case Studies from Africa’ featuring Khaled El-Attar - Vice Minister, Egypt and Afiss Bileoma Director of Departement, ASSI, Benin at the e-Governance Conference on 10 May 2022! 
Register here! https://2022.egovconference.ee/

Apr 13, 2022
Designing for Complex Systems
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In today's episode, we continue to introduce the speakers of the upcoming e-Governance Conference on 10 - 12 May.  Vitaly Friedman is an author and UX designer who is right now involved in the navigation improvement of European Parliament websites - there are altogether 150 webpages. In this episode, we explore how design and clear principles can help public authorities ease citizens’ journey through the vast and deep sea of public data and information.
Tune in!

Interested in more? Join Vitaly Friedman at the e-Governance Conference to learn more about designing government webpages and other complex systems! Register now at https://2022.egovconference.ee/

Mar 30, 2022
Will people make policy digitally?
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Today's episode features Giovanni Allegretti, senior researcher and coordinator of the PhD programme “Democracy in the 21st century” at the University of Coimbra (Portugal). He has worked for over 20 years on citizen participation in budgeting and territorial management. Based on his abounding experiences, he casts light on how crowdsourcing, matched with technology, can enhance and amplify people’s voices in the halls of policy design.
The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera.
Tune in!

Interested in more? Join Giovanny Allegretti at the e-Governance Conference in the discussion on ‘Next step: “Will People Make Policy Digitally?’.
Register now at https://2022.egovconference.ee/

Mar 30, 2022
Resilient and Seamless Governance
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In today's podcast, Hannes Astok, a member of the e-Governance Academy Board, sheds light on the two main keywords that should describe the future goals of digital transformation for every government organisation - resilience and seamlessness.  Tune in to the episode to find out why these features are critical for any digital government!

Interested in more? Join the e-Governance Conference on 10 - 12 May to get the best insights into and lessons learnt about the digital ecosystems that cope with crises and create seamless digital services to help citizens cope with them.

Mar 23, 2022
From Ukraine: Digital services keep working despite the war
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Yurii Kopytin, Cybersecurity Component Leader of EU4DigitalUA project and general architect of Ukrainian data exchange platform the Trembita system, works now 18 hours per day by safeguarding the Ukrainian digital government, keeping the Trembita system functional and fighting with cyber attacks and fake news together with the government authorities of Ukraine. 

Even the workload and conditions are very hard the digital transformation in Ukraine is not stopped during the war. Slowly but still some developments take place according to the project plan. Listen to the episode with him to find out how is the situation there and what developments are still ongoing despite the war!

Slava Ukraini!

Mar 15, 2022
Is cyber warfare part of Russia’s plans in Ukraine?
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Something might have caught many observers by surprise in Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine. After a solid history of cyber threats that could be linked back to the Federation’s territory, cyber warfare seems to not be playing a major role in the attackers’ plans this time.  It hasn’t been the same in the past, and no one guarantees the current situation can’t change in a matter of weeks, or even days. Perhaps particularly when, on the ground, the Russian army appears to not proceed at the pace initially envisioned by the architects of the invasion.

Does that mean we can overlook the cyber side of the conflict? Absolutely not, Merle Maigre, Senior Cybersecurity Expert at e-Governance Academy and former top NATO diplomat in this field, warns in our conversation. 

Let’s look at what is happening in Ukraine now and how to be better prepared at all levels – personal, organizational, national – to protect our systems and data in the face of a cyberattack.  

The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera.

Tune in!

Mar 09, 2022
Ukraine is under attack, and our team stayed there
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This week, the world looks quite different from what it used to. We’re here to talk about a tragedy taking shape just before our eyes – the war in UkraineOleh Burba is not a war correspondent, but a Component Leader in our EU4DigitalUA team in Kyiv, Ukraine.
With him, we look at how safety suddenly had to become the priority, and how the e-Governance Academy team there is dealing with the quickly escalating conflict.
The episode is hosted by Kristina Mänd.

Contribute to support Ukrainians in the fight for democracy in Europe and the freedom of Ukraine!

International Red Cross, https://www.icrc.org/en 

Doctors Without Borders, http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/

United help to Ukraine, http://www.unitedhelpukraine.org/

Ukraina heaks, https://www.ukrainaheaks.ee/ (in Estonia)

Mar 01, 2022
To be an e-citizen or not to be
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Can a digital society exist sustainably without e-citizens? Who are the e-citizens - the user the e-services or something more? This is a topic we will discuss today with e-democracy expert Kristina Reinsalu. 

In this episode, she introduces us to the e-citizen concept and to the digital nudging in society that supports the citizens' use of digital tools and better engagement in decision-making processes. You can explore examples from Island and Estonia with us. 

Moreover, you will get more insights into the digital divide that digitalization can create, and how Estonia has decreased it. And finally, we address the governments and civil society organizations, while asking where to begin to have active e-citizens in a society. The podcast is hosted by Federico Plantera.

Tune in!

Feb 23, 2022
What will post-pandemic school look like?
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In today's episode, IT-visionary Linnar Viik talks about the post-pandemic trends of teaching and learning at schools, and shares with us the findings from the survey he conducted among teachers and parents in Estonia. Listen to the discussion and find out how did the schools in various countries react to the lockdowns and how did the experiences that we gained from lockdowns change the expectations towards teaching and learning at schools. 

Is there something useful that could be implemented in schools in the future or even right away? Tune in!

Feb 16, 2022
How ready is your country for the next step in digital transformation?
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Every digital transformation journey needs a good place to start from. What’s the first step? Understanding where you stand, what are your valuable assets, how to move forward from there, and what to focus on first.

The Digital Readiness Review does just that. For a long, e-Governance Academy has been offering this analysis to both governments and businesses – to pinpoint strengths, and weaker spots to work on.

With Marit Lani, Programme Director of Smart Governance, we take a look at how both public and private sector organizations can benefit from it and become more digital. Tune in!

Feb 09, 2022
How to make people more cyber-wise?
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Behind a successful cyber attack, it is very often the poor cyber hygiene of internet users or employees of an organisation, as revealed by the analysis of cyber incidents. Thus, the demand of being cyber-wise concerns every citizen, and the government as well. 

In this episode, Lauri Tankler, lead analyst of the Estonian Information System Authority, and Merle Maigre, senior expert on cybersecurity and former director of the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence, shed light on what mistakes people make the most in cyberspace, what is the government’s responsibility in raising peoples' awareness of cybersecurity, and what could be done better based on the experience of the EU Member States.

Moreover, Lauri Tankler tells us in more detail how Estonia is raising cyber-wise people and what are the challenges they face.  Tune in!

The discussion is based on the report 'Raising awareness of cybersecurity' that presents case studies of the EU Member States and provides recommendations for the experts of the National Authorities responsible for the design and the implementation of cybersecurity awareness-raising campaigns, in the following four areas: building capacities for cybersecurity awareness, regular assessments of trends and challenges, measuring cybersecurity behaviour and planning cybersecurity awareness campaigns.

Explore more of the report compiled by eGA experts within the project ‘ENISA: Research of Awareness Raising Activities‘!

 


Jan 31, 2022
AI to empower data-driven decision making in the public sector
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AI is one of the technologies that influences the public sector service provision and also our expectations towards it. In today's episode, we invite you to explore how are governments approaching the use of artificial intelligence in public service provision. Consider Estonia, as a case study – and let Ott Velsberg, Chief Data Officer of the Estonian Government, be our guide. 

 The country’s AI plans are rooted in words and deeds that started already in 2019. The AI strategy aims to make the government more proactive, seamless, automated. The end goal is zero bureaucracy, and AI plays a key part in moving meaningfully in that direction. So far, 80 case studies have been completed, with an additional 30 ongoing, and will soon be channelled through Bürokratt

 What tasks has the Estonian public sector entrusted to AI already? And what is the Bürokratt - the new tool of making bureaucracy more efficient and citizen-friendly? 

Interested in exploring the topic more closely? Tune in!

Jan 25, 2022
Which trends should governments follow in their digital transformation plans?
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Today we invite you to follow the government CIO’s special edition! Two former leaders of digital transformation, Siim Sikkut from Estonia and Randall Brugeaud from Australia, cast light on the trends that governments should follow in their digital transformation activities to benefit from pandemic lessons learned. 

In the episode, our guests share their views on how to keep an innovation-driven mindset inside of the government, how to engage society and keep citizen-centricity in mind while developing new services. 

'COVID proved things can be done very quickly, Estonia also had overnight solutions developed to react to the pandemic. But fatigue is now kicking in a bit, so it is on us as gov CIOs & digital transformation authorities to make sure that new normality will stick, ' said Siim Sikkut.

Tune in and get some inspiration to continue the digital transformation in your country or organisation! The discussion was moderated by Linnar Viik and live at the e-Governance Conference 2021.

Jan 19, 2022
Let's sum up the year 2021!
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With the year-end approaching, we could not let this opportunity slip for a proper wrap up of 2021. Hannes Astok, Executive Director at e-Governance Academy, gladly bears the weight of this responsibility in the latest episode of the Digital Government Podcast.

Remote work and cybersecurity are the topics that dominated the digital transformation landscape this past year. While flexibility is the keyword for the former, enhancing the safety of operations on the internet is the command for the latter. This pertained not only to the work of the e-Governance Academy but also that of the government organisations and partners – who have been facing similar and further challenges.

Achievements, announcements, pre-holiday wishes. In this lightweight episode, we salute the year that has gone by and give you all a recommendation: mark May 10-12, 2022, on your calendar, as the e-Governance Conference makes its return both offline and online!

The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera.

Dec 08, 2021
The next big turn in digital transformation
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The number of mobile users is already exceeding 7 billion worldwide, and 3 billion of them are using smartphones. The rising mobile penetration has pushed governments to develop services that could be used via mobile phone. On the other hand, more and more governments are exploring how to benefit from AI by providing public services. In this episode, we will explore with Margus Simson, the Chief Digital Officer (CDO) at Komerční Banka, how these two developments change online service provision and should they be reflected in government digital strategies. 

According to Margus, from 2025 and beyond, the new standard in digital service should be the significant inclusion of AI/ML. "It will beef up the intelligence efforts, and take companies and customers to personalization levels and business opportunities that have never been seen before. Mobiles are definitely crucial for customer service and digitalization, but honestly, it is already 10 years too late. Instead of mobile, simplicity should be the core strategic direction of transformation stories."

In the discussion, he reflects on developments that are taking place already in the private sector, and based on that, he predicts the future of developments for the public sector. 

More precisely, Margus will cast light on 

>what horizons in service provision have AI and ML opened? 

>what could we expect as customers?

>what changes should governments make in their digital transformation strategies to keep up with the technological developments? 

Tune in!

Nov 22, 2021
Freedom of expression in the digital age. A lost battle for truth?
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The problem with fake news is becoming more and more topical for every public organisation. Due to that, we invited Dr Katrin Nyman-Metcalf, the Senior Expert on Legal Framework to the Digital Government Podcast to cast light on the freedom of expression in the digital age and the problem of fake news from a legal perspective. 

In this episode,  we walk through the following questions: 

Can we "regulate away" misinformation? 

What are the lessons learnt from the countries that have such legislation? 

What would be the key points to keep in mind if and when regulating this issue? 

Should not the big platforms like Facebook take responsibility primarily - as it is largely via them that misinformation is spread?

Turn in to find out whether there is still hope or if the battle is indeed lost!

The podcast is hosted by Federico Plantera.

Nov 17, 2021
The ethical challenges of fully automated public services
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Based on what trends we have witnessed in advanced digital societies -  the next level of public services will be fully automated services that are based on AI and Machine Learning. In this episode, a distinguished legal expert on digital governance topics Katrin Nyman-Metcalf covers another side of the coin - essential and ethical dilemmas behind that process/development. She says that the key decisions on how, when and whether to automate are not technical, legal, nor practical - they are essentially strategic, political decisions about what kind of society we want.

But what kind of society do we want? That raises a lot of questions. For example, what is the role of public officials while machines are putting together facts and providing public services? What is the role of the state and the state administration? And how will society and citizens react? Will the norms change in society? Are we obliged to love robots? Is the challenge of transforming into a fully automated society a generational issue? 

 Listen to this episode to find out!

Nov 16, 2021
Digital government leadership throughout the crisis
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Despite a continued global vaccine rollout, COVID19's shadow remains large and limiting for all government bodies around the world. The need to cut through COVID fatigue with strong leadership has never been more urgent. Now the government leaders themselves play a crucial online role in shielding teams and policies from criticism and misinformation.

In today's episode, we explore with Roger Christie, a digital brand advisor from the Australian consultancy Propel Group, how to increase government leadership with the help of social media, to engage and influence key audiences, and to take action at a time when we all need our leaders to stand up and be heard.

The episode is based on the Digital Government Leadership Report conducted by Propel and Brandwatch and published this autumn. In the survey, they analysed the social media activity of the Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews and revealed how Premier Andrews successfully used Twitter to increase positive community sentiment during his state’s darkest period during the 2020 lockdowns. The data behind the Premier’s digital leadership reveals an important truth for all – government leaders need to stand up online.

The podcast is hosted by Federico Plantera.

Nov 09, 2021
How can civil society organisations enhance digital responsibility of the government?
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The pandemic caused countries around the world to employ digital solutions, which they had been ignoring or postponing, almost overnight. Such rapid development also raises several questions related to digital responsibility and accountability.

Digital responsibility has mainly been addressed by the business sector. However, the expectations to the governments to set the agenda for digital responsibility are becoming increasingly clear, as is the potential role of civil society organisations in challenging the governments in the process.

In this episode, Kristina Mänd (eGA), Aldo Merkoci (MJAFY!, Albania) and Robert Bjarnason (Citizen Foundation, Iceland) will address the expectations on governments, in addition to the role of civil society organisations in supporting governments in digital responsibility.  Tune in to explore the practices used in Albania, Iceland and Estonia!

The discussion was live at the e-Governance Conference 2021.

Oct 29, 2021
How does the digital responsibility of companies impact our future?
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The rapid digitalisation of societies introduces new expectations towards tech companies. People expect companies to take care of their ecological footprint, support free expression, respect privacy and develop a more secure cyberspace.
 
Explore how enterprises and governments can address these demands for digital responsibility with tech innovator Üllar Jaaksoo, from Greenergy, technology and public policy leader Eli Sugarman, from the Oversight Board, and senior expert of cybersecurity Merle Maigre, from e-Governance Academy.

Moreover, they talk about how the government could be a better partner for the private sector in this journey, and share examples from the UK, European Union and Estonia. Tune in!

The discussion was live at the e-Governance Conference. 

Oct 26, 2021
Is i-voting here to stay?
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Estonia conducted i-voting for the 12th time, in the recent local elections on 11 – 17 October 2021. In this episode, we cast light on these election results and explore with Priit Vinkel, the former Head of the Estonian Electoral Office and one of the implementers of the internet voting system in Estonia, what are the lessons learned from i-voting, both for Estonia and as well as for other governments who want to implement i-voting. 

We will talk about building trust and voter and politician behaviour during the past 16 years (the first i-voting took place in 2005). Besides the Estonian experience, we cast light on the experiences of other countries, such as the USA, Norway, Switzerland, India, etc. Priit also explains what are the main barriers that are hampering the use of i-voting, although the need for a safer option (referring to an individual's health by avoiding physical contact) to vote is getting more and more critical during the pandemic. Tune in! 

Oct 20, 2021
Is digital only the next normality for governments?
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Today we invite you to listen to the episode on the next normal of digital transformation featured by futurist Thrond Arne Undheim and the former Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves.  Follow their discussion on what have the governments learned from 2020 and what they have refused to learn. Moreover, the guest will talk about the trends that will influence digital transformation the most in the future, and how the "Digital Only" approach will guide the way of administration and interaction. Do we see the governments controlling the e-governance of the future or is that something we are having an hopeless situation about?   
The discussion was moderated by IT visionary Linnar Viik and was live at the e-Governance Conference 2021.

Oct 11, 2021
Does technology increase or decrease democracy?
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In today's episode of the Digital Government Podcast, you are welcome to meet our distinguished e-democracy expert Liia Hänni, who recently celebrated her 75th birthday! Known as the "mother" of the Estonian Constitution, she has had a massive impact in the design of Estonia's democratic face and digital society. 

Within the following 21 minutes, she talks about the relationship between technology and democracy, and how using technology influences trust towards the government. Finally, on the eve of the Estonian local elections, she sheds light on what made i-voting happen in Estonia. Tune in!

Oct 05, 2021
The pains of using tech buzzwords
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In this episode, Heiko Vainsalu, a Senior Expert on Technology at the e-Governance Academy, debunks the most viral tech myths. These myths, expressed by buzzwords, are accompanying us while we are talking or listening to discussions on digital transformation and government innovations.

Join us to find out:

  • What are today's most common tech buzzwords?
  • How the following tech buzzwords influence the digital transformation of a country?
  • In which area the real tech innovation is happening now?
  • What are the questions innovators should ask themselves while choosing a tech solution for a country or organisation? 

Tune in to see through the buzzwords! 



Sep 28, 2021
E-hääletamise uuendustest, turvalisusest ja heast tavast
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Tänavu 17.oktoobril toimuvad kohalikud valimised, mille eel on kõigil soovijatel juba 12. korda võimalus e-hääletada. Pühendame oma saate e-hääletamisele ning e-riigi akadeemia eestvõttel loodud e-hääletamise heale tavale.

Saates räägivad e-hääletuse hea tava üks väljatöötajatest Liia Hänni ja kauaaegne valimisteenistuse juht, pregune E-riigi Akadeemia vanemekspert Priit Vinkel e-hääletamise protsessist ja tehtud uuendustest, valija- ja erakondade käitumisest, kordavad üle e-hääletamise põhitõed nii erakondadele kui valijatele ning kõige lõpuks ennustavad, kui populaarseks kujuneb e-hääletamine tänavu.  Saatejuht on Hannes Astok. Head kuulamist!

Taustaks:
Elektrooniline hääletamine algab esmaspäeval, 11. oktoobril kell 9.00 ja lõpeb laupäeval, 16. oktoobril kell 20.00. Valijarakendus, mille saab enda arvutisse alla laadida, avaldatakse valimiste veebilehel www.valimised.ee vahetult enne e-hääletamise algust 11. oktoobri hommikul.  E-hääletamiseks on vaja internetiühendusega turvalist arvutit ning kehtivate sertifikaatidega ID-kaarti koos kaardilugejaga või mobiil-ID­d.

In English
In October 2021, local elections will take place in Estonia. Once again, citizens can cast their votes via the Internet as well.  Due to that, we dedicate this episode to Estonian i-voting and the principles of fair i-voting, brought to you in Estonian. 

The principles of fair i-voting were born from an initiative, of the e-Governance Academy in cooperation with political parties, in 2005, when i-voting took place for the first time. The aim was to cooperatively think through the specifics of i-voting, compared to traditional voting, and to ensure the smooth implementation of the new solution.

Liia Hänni, one of the developers of the principles, and Priit Vinkel, the former head of the State Electoral Office and current senior expert at the e-Governance Academy, talk about the i-voting process and innovations, voters’ and parties’ behaviour, i-voting principles, and finally, they predict how many citizens will cast their votes via the Internet. Just as a reminder, in the last European Parliament’s elections in 2019, 46.7% of voters used the opportunity to vote online, and in the Riigikogu elections of the same year, more than 247,000 voters cast i-votes. 

Listen to the throwback of the i-voting experiences and the results of the Estonian local elections in English, on 20 October! 

Sep 17, 2021
Will e-census be our next normality?
1522

Estonia is preparing for its first e-census or register-based census, where all Population and Housing Census data will be compiled from the data of the national registers. About 24 national registers will be included, and they involve data on many fields of life. Only the information that is not available in registers will be asked from people.  The e-census will take place at 00:00 on 31 December 2021.

Join our discussion with Liina Osila from Statistics Estonia to find out what have been the biggest challenges facing e-census and what preconditions a government must fulfil in order to conduct it. Also, you will find out what are the benefits of an e-census and finally, will the e-census be the next normality ? 

Tune in!

Learn more at  Statistics Estonia web-page . 

Sep 17, 2021
Pros and cons of using biometric data
1783

While we approach the international identity day on September 16, we are addressing the topic that concerns our identity and its use, online or offline. In today's episode, we explore with Kaija Kirch, Head of Digital Identity Technologies at Cybernetica AS, the pros and cons of using biometric data in identification and providing access online or onsite.  In particular, you will learn 

What is biometric data? 
How is biometric data used in our everyday life by businesses or governments?
Why is the use of biometric data getting more and more topical? 
What should we be aware of to avoid the misuse of biometric data?
Where do we start the effective and proper implementation of biometric data for public service provision?
How is Estonia using biometric data for public service provision? 
Will biometric data replace other procedures in the future? 

Tune in to find out!

The host of the podcast is Federico Plantera.

Sep 15, 2021
State's sovereignty in the digital age
1768

The globalisation of economies, technologies and communication has challenged country sovereignty relative to actions and protection. In the global scene, we can witness every day how fake news attack democracy, and how hackers do the same to supply chains, electricity networks or hospitals. The problem of one country concerns simultaneously other countries too, as we all are connected to each other.

In today's podcast, Paul Timmers, a Research Associate of the University of Oxford talks about what are a country's sovereign assets, that need our attention in the digital age, and how can countries ensure both their protection and national sovereignty. The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera. Tune in!

Read more about the digital sovereignty discussion in the EU in Paul Timmers' article 'When Sovereignty Leads and Cyber Law Follows'

Sep 08, 2021
Digital Skills 3.0
2302

At the beginning of the school year, it is timely to talk about digital skills development since digital skills are one of the most critical enablers of digital transformation. In today's episode (a recording from the e-Governance Conference 2021),  Kristo Vaher from Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication of Estonia, Cigdem Ertem (INTEL) and Kristel Rillo shed light on what kind of digital skills governments need to lead through digital transformation programmes, and who's the responsibility it is. 

Some pure facts to introduce the topic: 

  • 12% is the number of people (engineers, architects) missing from the IT sector;
  • Over the year we need 1000 people more working as engineers, architects, ICT experts.
  • People already working in the ICT sector need to refresh their skills as ICT is in constant development.

What does it mean to the government that aims for digital transformation? Tune in to find out!

The discussion was held at the e-Governance Conference 2021.

Sep 01, 2021
Cyber exercises - the best way to train your cyber muscles
1336

Cyber attacks are becoming a natural part of our digital life. Hence it is wise to know how to defend your data and infrastructure to avoid losses. In today's episode of the Digital Government Podcast, we invite you to explore how governments and organisations can be better prepared for cyber attacks. Two distinguished cyber experts Ragnar Rattas, from CybExer Technologies, and Merle Maigre, from eGA, talk about the cyber exercises, their kinds, features, and benefits. They also cast light on the recent cyber exercise held for Ukrainian cyber experts, and explain how to conduct them in a meaningful and efficient way. Interested in exploring more? Tune in! 

Jun 09, 2021
How do Finland and Estonia benefit from the cross-border secure data exchange?
1754

In this episode, Ville Sirviö, the CEO of the Nordic Institute for Interoperability Solutions (NIIS), casts light on how to get digital data securely running between two countries, based on the X-road trust federation, and how citizens of Finland and Estonia have benefited from it. As we know, Finland and Estonia are exchanging data of their population and business registers, and also their tax boards. Moreover, the information of medical prescriptions is also available across borders. Ville explains the enablers of making such data exchange happen and NIIS's role in all of this. Wondering how many countries have already functional X-Roads, or is the X-Road functional in your country as well? Tune in to find out!

After the episode, you are welcome to learn more about how the X-road has been implemented globally and could benefit your country at x-road.global

Jun 02, 2021
The role of civil society organisations in a digital society
1428

In today's episode, Urmo Kübar, the former advisor to the Estonian President and the Executive Director of Praxis, talks about the role of civil society organizations in a digital society and explains how can they benefit from digital tools for building a more seamless society.  Being involved in the Estonian civic society development for more than 20 years, he is the right person to cast light on the topic. 

In the episode, he also makes a throwback to the early years of civil society organizations in Estonia, and brings examples of how a worldwide known civic initiative 'Let's do it!' has used digital tools to gain its purpose: clean the world from illegally dumped trash. 
The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera.

Tune in!

May 24, 2021
Towards greater digital responsibility with governments and civil society organisations
1685

This year’s e-Governance ConferenceA Digital Decade in One Year – looks at the implications of the accelerated digital transformation resulting from the pandemic. The programme creates space to explore the new normal in which we find ourselves today, and the next normal that we are entering.  In the build-up to the Conference, our podcasts will introduce some main speakers and topics that will take part in the programme.

Together with Kristina Mänd, Senior Expert on e-Democracy (eGA), we unpack the concept of digital responsibility and explore the role of governments as well as civil society organisations (CSOs) in achieving better outcomes in the field. Tune in!

At the upcoming e-Governance Conference, the session “Digital Responsibility: Government and the Civil Society View” on 20 May will dive further into the expectations for governments and CSOs in achieving greater accountability in the digital realm. Joining Kristina Mänd will be Robert Bjarnason, President & CEO of Citizens Foundation (Iceland) and Aldo Merkoci, Executive Director at MJAFT! (Albania). 
Catch the LIVE discussion by registering to the conference at 2021.egovconference.ee/

 
 

May 12, 2021
Digital transformation trends for governments entering the next normal
1344

This year’s e-Governance ConferenceA Digital Decade in One Year – looks at the implications of the accelerated digital transformation resulting from the pandemic. The programme creates space to explore the new normal in which we find ourselves today, and the next normal that we are entering.

In the build-up to the Conference, our podcasts will introduce some main speakers and topics that will take part in the programme. With Siim Sikkut, CIO of the Government of Estonia, we explore Estonia’s experience in adapting to the new normal and consider what the next normal  has in store for national digital transformation plans. Tune in!

May 04, 2021
What is an e-government without interoperability?
1388

This year’s e-Governance Conference – A Digital Decade in One Year – looks at the implications of the accelerated digital transformation resulting from the pandemic. The programme creates space to explore the new normal in which we find ourselves today, and the next normal that we are entering.

In the build-up to the Conference, our podcasts will introduce some main speakers and topics that will take part in the programme. 

In today's episode, interoperability expert Heiko Vainsalu invites you to explore interoperability, and why countries need it when developing e-government. Heiko shares some insights into various ways of reaching interoperability, and explains on what the approach should be based. Moreover, he sheds light on why some countries succeed and others not. More closely he discusses Mongolia's approach towards interoperability.  
The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera.
Tune in!

Join us at the e-Governance Conference https://2021.egovconference.ee/ to hear more about what helps countries become digitally interoperable! The session 'Lessons on How to Make Data Run, Not People' will feature  

Ville Sirviö – Chief Executive Officer, Nordic Institute for Interoperability Solutions, 
Riho Kurg – Head of Data Exchange Technologies, Cybernetica, 
Arvo Ott – Director of e-Governance Technologies and Member of the Management Board, e-Governance Academy. 
And will be moderated by Heiko Vainsalu.


Apr 27, 2021
Futurist Trond Arne Undheim on the e-government of tomorrow
1667

This year’s e-Governance ConferenceA Digital Decade in One Year – looks at the implications of the accelerated digital transformation resulting from the pandemic. The programme creates space to explore the new normal  in which we find ourselves today and the next normal  that we are entering.

In the build-up to the Conference, our podcasts will introduce some of the main speakers that will take part in the programme. One of the keynotes will be delivered by Trond Arne Undheim - futurist, investor, author and entrepreneur. Together we discussed the future of e-governance and the considerations for leaders preparing for the next normalTune in!

Apr 21, 2021
Four years that laid the groundwork for the Ukrainian digital transformation
1692

For more than four years, the e-Governance Academy's team has assisted digital transformation in Ukraine by creating the conditions for digital services' provision. In this episode, our Ukrainian team leader, Mari Pedak, casts light on the technical developments within the EGOV4Ukraine project, the organisational developments in the Ukrainian government, and the changes in Ukraine's officials' and citizens' attitude towards digital solutions and services during the last years. 

According to Mari Pedak, this change can be summarised as: within four years the question "Why do we need the Trembita data exchange platform and the Vulyk information system?" has changed into "When will they be ready?".  Since the work that the EGOV4Ukraine project team has done is not as easy as a walk in the park, Mari also discusses the invisible work behind the scenes that the team had to do. 

Tune in!

Apr 14, 2021
How to raise trust towards vaccine certificates?
3091

With the COVID19 vaccines developed and immunization campaigns being rolled out, governments and international organisations are now seeking a way to harmonize how to exit the crisis with vaccine certificates.

In this Digital Government Podcast, we invite you to examine what are the technological and organisational enablers to raise trust towards vaccine certificates.

The podcast features Konstantin Hyppönen (EC), Ain Aaviksoo (Guardtime) and Vincent van Pelt (Nictiz) and is hosted by Paul Timmers, the distinguished expert on digital health.

The episode is the recording of Digital Transformation Talks, which is a series of timely online discussions organised by the e-Governance Academy. For more information, visit the Digital Transformation Talks’ website ega.ee/ehealthsecurity.

Tune in!

Apr 06, 2021
Challenges and opportunities of cross-border health data exchange
2706

In this episode, we invite you to listen to the topical discussion on cross-border health-data exchange challenges due to the new vaccine certificate. We examine the challenges and opportunities from the perspective of hospitals, governments and worldwide organisations as the World Health Organisation. How could we benefit from the health data exchange between countries? Why it is so hard to reach? Will the Global Trust Framework led by the World Health Organisation make it happen?

The discussion features Clayton Hamilton from the World Health Organisation; Dr Terje Peetso, from the North Estonia Medical Centre (Estonia); Marten Kaevats from the Government Office of Estonia and is moderated by Merle Maigre from the e-Governance Academy.

The episode is the recording of Digital Transformation Talks, which is a series of timely online discussions organised by the e-Governance Academy. For more information, visit the Digital Transformation Talks’ website ega.ee/ehealthsecurity.   

Tune in!

Mar 30, 2021
How to make IT systems and e-services more secure?
1144

Cyber threats and attacks are part of the daily management of IT systems and e-services. Usually, we, as regular users of e-services, do not know about attacks as long as the e-service is available and working. In this episode, Epp Maaten, Programme Director of Cyber Security, talks about how to secure e-services, IT systems or even networks from cyber attacks. She casts light on a process called 'penetration testing' that will give an overview of vulnerabilities in the targeted cyber environment and the risks associated with it. Close to hacking, penetration testing is a very useful method to keep IT systems and e-services safe. 
Tune in to find out more!

Mar 24, 2021
Digital health security and vaccination certificates
1294

The COVID19 pandemic has created a new reality for the healthcare sector, globally testing its limits. The European Commission, along with the World Health Organisation, is looking for a scalable digital infrastructure for secure vaccination certification to help governments to reopen societies and economies.  

In this episode, Merle Maigre, the organizer of the Digital Transformation Talks introduces the digital health security discussions that will take place on 24 March online. The discussion will focus on digital health solutions and the challenges governments and the health sector is facing. “For credible future digital health solutions, we need people to understand better both the medical and the cybersecurity challenges,” is she convinced. 

The podcast is hosted by Federico Plantera.

For more information about the event, visit the Digital Transformation Talks’ website ega.ee/ehealthsecurity .

Register now to ensure your spot HERE.

Mar 17, 2021
Addressing the demands for digital responsibility
1547

Digital technologies have become ever more embedded in our everyday lives, introducing topical questions over their fair and ethical use. Openness and transparency in service delivery enable such requests. But, also, these trigger a change in values and attitudes that intensify pressure on governments and companies to be more accountable for the impact of their activities.

This impact might be social, economic, environmental, technological – and still, falling under the wide umbrella of the consequences of digitalisation. So how do we define this new set of expectations? 

Linnar Viik, Programme Director of Smart Governance at e-Governance Academy, introduces us to the vibrant debate on Corporate Digital Responsibility.  The episode is hosted by Federico Plantera. 

Tune in!

Mar 08, 2021
Opportunities and challenges of using AI/Kratt for public service provision
1600

In this episode of the Digital Government Podcast, our guest Marten Kaevats, the National Digital Advisor of the Estonian Government, will shed light on why and how to deploy artificial intelligence for public service provision. Is AI a viral buzzword or a beneficial tool to make public service provision smarter and more efficient? 

He familiarizes us with the new creature, the ‘Kratt’, that assists the Estonian government in deploying public services. And last, but not least, he shares with us how the engagement of AI will shape public sector thinking and procurement habits. 

The podcast is hosted by Federico Plantera.

Tune in!

Mar 03, 2021
Why Estonia succeeded with its digital transformation?
1269

On Estonia's Independence Day on 24 February, we are glad to share with you the secret behind the digital transformation success story of Estonia. So, why did Estonia succeed?

To a great extent, Estonia's success is a story of luck and timing. But hindsight has allowed the architects of the digital state to extract a blueprint to support digitalisation in other countries.

With Linnar Viik, our Programme Director of Smart Governance, we reflect on the components that benefited Estonia’s digital transformation and the mindset that can help any country succeed. Follow us! And Happy Independence Day Estonia!

Feb 23, 2021
Among the giants – Governments and regulation in a digital economy
1566

By now, we have become familiar with how the relationship between big tech firms and governments has largely been portrayed in the media. So often it looks like a clash between opposing factions – the first standing on its ground to keep the market as free as possible, with the latter proposing laws to holding these companies increasingly more accountable.

Is there, actually, a conflict between these two forces? A rather conciliatory response to this puzzle comes from Katrin Nyman-Metcalf, the Senior Legal Expert at e-Governance Academy. Through her contribution, we explore who makes the rules on the Internet today and why offering tech giants a seat at the law-making table could lead to more effective regulatory environments. Tune in!

Feb 17, 2021
Where to start the public e-service development?
1552

Welcome to our 26th episode of the Digital Government Podcast! In today's episode, Janek Rozov, Strategy Director at the Information Technology and Development Center of the Ministry of Interior and the former Chief Digital Officer of the Estonian Government, clarifies the questions that should be answered before going digital with public services. We talk about the value of e-services, the legislation behind it, and the connectivity and social context of public e-services. Tune in!

Feb 10, 2021
The digital transformation challenges of Pacific Islands
1467

What comes in your mind when you hear someone mentioning the Pacific Islands? Probably sandy beaches, palm trees and sunshine. In this episode of the Digital Government Podcast, we go beyond the tourist attractions and take a look at the digital side of these countries. Today's guest, Hannes Astok, sheds light on how the governments of Kiribati and the Kingdom of Tonga are resolving the main challenges that are holding back their digital transformation. But he also shares his dreams on what horizons the better internet connectivity and IT-wise officials could open for the people of the Pacific Islands. Tune in!

Feb 02, 2021
What makes online voting secure?
1865

Do you know how old is the concept of online voting? It comes back to the 19th century when Thomas Alva Edison introduced it to the US congress. Why then, even two centuries later, are there so few countries that use online voting to ensure equal access for their citizens to express their democratic rights? Even in today’s world, where due to pandemic it would be safer to vote remotely, staying at home? 

In this episode, cyber security experts Liisa Past and Jan Willemson from Cybernetica Ltd talk about the historical and cognitive aspects of online voting and explain how technology and maths ensure the requirements of voting freedom and competitiveness, thus making online voting a secure and trustworthy solution.  

Liisa Past introduces the talk as the followings: "Historical experience and constant practice make relatively static paper elections predictable and therefore safe. The dynamic digital world requires new approaches to the elections and a new risk assessment. Election organisers alone cannot operate in a much more dynamic digital world; they must be supported by scientists as well as cyber security guards and communicators."

According to Jan Willemson: "The reason why we consider paper elections to be safe is due to historical experience, but not always due to rational risk analysis. The danger here is that the historical experience is valid in a historical environment, but the environment is currently changing very rapidly. Therefore, the security level of paper elections should also be reassessed in the context of current rapid technological development. The benefit of mathematics is that it allows us to make stronger claims for online voting, than what you possibly have about paper voting.

What are these claims? What makes online voting secure? Tune in to find out!

The podcast was recorded on January 6.

Jan 26, 2021
Digital tools in the global battle against corruption
1630

“Corruption as a disease, for which transparency is the cure” is a politically popular analogy, that surely resonates when trying to capture such widespread, global challenge all countries continue to face today. But researchers contend that the actual manifestations of corruption are far too complex to fit into the simple frames built by this parallel.

If we build a conceptual bridge with healthcare, the analogy holds more easily. The sector has been long benefitting from technology and emerging innovation – can the same happen to the fight against corruption?

Together with Carina Paju, Executive Director at Transparency International (TI) Estonia, and Kristina Reinsalu, Programme Director of e-Democracy at e-Governance Academy, we explore some of the latest digital tools deployed to combat corruption. Tune in!

Jan 20, 2021
Lessons learnt from the digital transformation journeys of various countries
1198

At the beginning of the year, we summed up our lessons learnt from the digital transformation journeys of various countries. Our team has been on these journeys for the past 18 years and obtained useful lessons that could benefit every country that starts or continues its digital transformation.

In this episode, Federico Plantera and Hannes Astok provide the list of preconditions and main features that assure the successful development and implementation of digital solutions. 

Their talk is showcased by examples from Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine and the Pacific Islands. Tune in!


Jan 13, 2021
Trends to watch out for in 2021
1509

The year 2020 became definitely a crossroad in digital transformation. Has it been any easy, with all the pain this pandemic caused? Absolutely not. But, on the flip side, the digital way has been now internalised as a must and a necessity by everyone like never before.

This year, what awaits is a systematisation of all the disruptors that shaped new normality. With Linnar Viik, Programme Director of Smart Governance at e-Governance Academy, we shed light on the digital trends set to shape transformative projects in the public sector in 2021. Tune in!

Jan 05, 2021
Lessons learned from 2020 for governments
1162

What lessons learned should governments and public officials take away from this year? In this year’s final episode of the Digital Government Podcast, former President of Estonia Toomas Hendrik Ilves shares his hopes, fears and criticisms on how governments have coped with the pandemic challenges.

As expected from the former President of Estonia, his recipe for governments to challenge the pandemic is to go digital and enhance cooperation. In the episode, he highlights the need for cross-border interoperable data exchange to track the coronavirus and share vaccination information. Moreover, he points out the bottlenecks that don't allow us to fully benefit from technology. Tune in!

Dec 15, 2020
Participatory budgeting: a powerful tool to improve engagement and policy design
1269

In a democratic society, the quality of the relationship between governments and citizens is a key talking point – and if not, most probably it should. Across the layers of governance, municipalities certainly represent the closest governmental actor to citizens. Such proximity not only works as the testing ground for state-to-people interactions but also as an incubator for innovative ideas directly sourced from the citizenry.

Kristina Reinsalu, Programme Director of e-Democracy at eGA, has been one of the main initiators and facilitators of the Participatory Budgeting in Estonia,  and Georgia

In this episode, we explore with her how engaging citizens in decision-making unlocks hidden resources for local administrators and dramatically contributes to community building. 
Tune in! 

Dec 09, 2020
Does privacy and human rights matter while governments are combating Covid19 and tracking the pandemic?
1449

In the light of the ongoing pandemic, today's Digital Government podcast addresses one of the most sensitive topics - privacy and human rights while governments are combating COVID19 and developing tracking apps.
Are our rights and privacy in danger? How can governments address these concerns and what should be a good practice?

Listen to Katrin Nyman-Metcalf and Linnar Viik to find out.

Dec 02, 2020
Benin has taken off on its digital journey
1165

In today's Digital Government podcast we invite you to Benin, a West-African country with more than 10 million inhabitants. Our collaboration partner Serge Adjovi, Director General of the National Information Systems and Services Agency (ASSI), and our Project Manager Marit Lani talk about the lessons learnt by the Beninese government, gained through the implementation the Estonian-origin backbone for government e-services - the secure data exchange platform - and the development of the citizen portal for the provision of government services. 
What were their biggest challenges? Tune in to find out!

Nov 25, 2020
The challenges of secure elections
1658

Recent elections in the US and in other countries raised a lot of claims that election results might be manipulated. Our CyberConf2020, to be held online on 24 November, dives deep into the topic of how to secure elections in the digital era. In today's Digital Government Podcast, Mr Toomas Hendrik Ilves, former President of Estonia and a speaker at the conference, sheds light on the ways countries are struggling with the integrity and trustworthiness of elections. Tune in! 

Nov 18, 2020
Investing in people and the economy for a digital society
1606

In parallel with a crisis of public health, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused great damage also to the national economy of most countries. 

Regardless of how hard these have been hit in terms of casualties and infection rates, lockdown measures have been enforced to different degrees almost everywhere in Europe and around the world. As a consequence, an unprecedented economic crisis has disrupted jobs, incomes, value chains, requiring governments and international organizations to act fast and channel funds into domestic markets to stay afloat. 

In today's episode, Linnar Viik sheds light on how governments can shape their post-pandemic labor markets and economies. His main suggestion is: shift the focus from public services digitalisation to the economy and society as a whole. The digital DNA of companies and societies is very much needed during these times. But how is it gained? The talk is lead by Federico Plantera. Tune in to find out! 

Nov 11, 2020
Why governments do not want the Internet to be free?
1412

In the Digital Government Podcast Episode, the previous contributors to the report "Freedom on The Net", Linnar Viik and Katrin Nyman-Metcalf, shed light on this year's Internet Freedom Index global report. They clarify two different views on freedom of expression, which is one of the cornerstones of Internet freedom, and answer the question of why governments don't like the Internet to be free.

The report "Freedom on The Net" is published by a US-based think tank annually. It analyses the rights and freedoms of people in 65 countries regarding public webspace. The index covers areas, such as obstacles to access, lack of unfounded restrictions on online content, ensuring user rights, as well as the freedom and responsibilities of online user behaviour. The overall findings of the report this year were that the coronavirus pandemic is accelerating a dramatic decline in global internet freedom. 

Nov 04, 2020
Let's talk about cyber hygiene!
1601

At times of COVID-19, cyber hygiene became particularly important. Being more cyber aware and practising healthy cyber hygiene is what will ultimately help you keep your business or administration continuity when you need it. In this episode, our senior cybersecurity expert Merle Maigre shares best practices of cyber hygiene from France, Estonia, the UK that is useful for every Internet user and organization. Tune in!

Oct 28, 2020
Do you know how prepared is your country for a cyber attack?
1229

In today's episode, we focus on cybersecurity, as October is European Cyber Security Month. Epp Maaten, Programme Director of Cyber Security at the e-Governance Academy peeks into the main features and goals of the National Cyber Security Index (NCSI) to explain how it serves as a fundamental tool for governments to advance their cybersecurity capacities and protect their cyberspace. 
Tune in!

Oct 21, 2020
Risks and opportunities in voting on the internet
1721

When it comes to political participation, elections represent something that most countries have in common, but that differentiates them between each other at the same time. All democratic nations set rounds of voting to renew people’s representatives in national assemblies; however, almost all nations vary in the ways elections are carried out.

From registration to counting and publishing of the results, there are many opportunities to implement electronic means to facilitate and streamline the process of voting. But moving parts of this process to the cyberworld, of course, carries related risks.

The speakers of today’s issue of the Digital Government podcast have a far-reaching background in electronic voting and the risks connected to it. 

Liisa Past, outgoing Chief Cyber Risk Officer for the Government of Estonia, was also one of the driving forces behind the Estonian Comprehensive Risk Assessment of Elections, as well as the Compendium on Cyber Security of Election Technology. Epp Maaten instead, currently Programme Director of Cyber Security at eGA, has served in the Estonian National Electoral Committee and as Deputy Head of the Electronic Voting Committee.
Discussion is moderated by Federico Plantera.

Listen to the podcast to delve deep into the challenges and breakthroughs of making digital solutions common practice in elections!

Oct 14, 2020
What should governments do to secure their national cyber space?
1143

Much as in the fight against Covid-19, prevention proves to be a key determinant of our safety on the internet. However, deliberate threats to both citizens and organisations still hide just around the corner. Despite our individual care and attention towards cyber behaviours, malicious actors might intentionally try to hijack personal data or information systems.

As a discipline, cyber security taps into the gaps left uncovered by ordinary cyber hygiene – cybercrime, or the protection of critical cyber infrastructure. Consequently, governments must provide protection against such threats as a way to shelter the public good online, letting citizens and businesses sleep well at night with regard to their internet assets.

Raul Rikk, National Cyber Security Policy Director at Estonia’s Government CIO office, speaks of what defines the role of government in ensuring cybersecurity for everyone.

Oct 07, 2020
Podcast: Assessing digital maturity for effective e-government roadmaps
1044

Where do we come from? Where do we stand? And where to go from here? Though the feeling might be that of a high-school psychology blog, there is no existentialism in these questions – at least in the current case. In order to formulate with efficacy digital transformation roadmaps for governments, policy makers must first understand the digital maturity of their own institutional environment.

Linnar Viik, Programme Director of Smart Governance, presents here a government digital maturity assessment. As a stepping stone towards conscious e-governance development, the analysis works as a tool to identify bottlenecks and opportunities in moving towards a digital process management. Tune in and find out how does it work!

Sep 30, 2020
Legal obstacles to e-government (that don’t exist)
1519

To many, the road to e-governance may seem rocky. Not only during some client meetings, but also in seminars and just conversations in general, an age-old question is often brought up: “Digitalization, okay, great. But there are too many legal obstacles to implement it in our country.” Today, we get this one off the board too.

Katrin Nyman-Metcalf, Senior Expert on Legal Framework at e-Governance Academy, addresses the legal obstacles to e-government that, as it turns out, basically do not exist. Easier said than done? 

Sep 23, 2020
How to boost your country's digital transformation remotely
1149

Are you interested in starting your country's digital transformation despite the pandemic? Wondering where you should begin? Listen to our new episode of the Digital Government podcast where Annela Kiirats, Programme Director of e-Governance Training explains the benefits of the e-governance training group courses, offline and online, where all team members are included.

Having more than decade of experience in advising various organisations in digital transformation, Annela shares the examples of the best trainees and what they have achieved so far. Tune in!

Sep 16, 2020
The magic behind e-participation
1577

In this podcast, Kristina Reinsalu, e-democracy programme director, sheds some light on e-participation. She explains what makes ‘e-participation’ similar to ‘participation’ and why they differ. The use of ICT-solutions in decision-making processes is more and more popular in the world, but does it motivate people to participate more and are they heard by the government? She shares examples of various countries on how to make people’s engagement in decision-making processes more efficient and enjoyable for both citizens and officials.

As the UN e-Government Survey 2020 was recently published, Kristina digs through the e-participation rankings and explains what the survey measures. You will hear why the countries at the top have reached these positions and what the Estonian government has done differently to be ranked first in e-participation. Additionally, you’ll be aware of why there are only European, Asian and North-American countries at the top, but no African or South American countries. Does the ranking describe the local reality truthfully?

And as the cherry on top, Kristina lists e-participation best practices from Finland, Spain, USA and the UK. 

Tune in and find out why they are worthy to be followed by your government!

Sep 09, 2020
Ukraine's digital transformation: successes & setbacks
1084

eGA's Digital Government Podcast is focusing today on Ukraine’s digital developments. Linnar Viik and Hannes Astok shed some light on the latest digital developments and challenges in one of Europe's biggest countries. In the last few years, Ukraine’s government has endeavoured incessantly to detach itself from paper-based procedures, to enable and provide e-services, and to reduce corruption with the help of IT-solutions and of the secure data exchange platform 'Trembita'. 
How has Ukraine managed so far? What are the highlights of success and what setbacks materialised in its digital transformation journey? Tune in to find out!

Sep 02, 2020
What makes us worry and what makes us happy reading the latest DESI report
1190

Hannes Astok and Linnar Viik continue examining the DESI - the Digital Economy and Society Index. This time they focus on how citizens use internet services, how businesses are moving towards digital, and on the development of e-government in different European countries. They look behind the numbers and explain where EU's national governments have succeeded and where they have failed. 


Aug 26, 2020
A deeper dive into digital skills and connectivity of EU countries
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There are many ways to measure the progress and impact of digital transformation in societies. Today, Hannes Astok and Linnar Viik make a deeper dive into DESI - the Digital Economy and Society Index. They look behind the numbers and explain where EU's national governments have succeeded and where they have failed. In this episode, they focus on digital skills and connectivity in EU countries. Moreover, Linnar explains what the European digital paradox is. Tune in to find out!

Aug 18, 2020
The world's best driver of digital transformation
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In today's episode, Hannes Astok and Linnar Viik shed light on the world's best driver of digital transformation - the COVID19 pandemic. They talk about the main obstacles in the way of epic digital transformation in many countries. We know that paper-based public services are practically useless when whole countries are shut down because of the pandemic. Why does it require governments so much effort to start providing public services online? How can governments build on the momentum? 
Tune in to our podcast and find out!  

Aug 12, 2020
A Brief History of E-government (4 decades)
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In this week's intro episode Hannes Astok and Linnar Viik take you through the last four decades that shaped Estonian e-governance, share flashbacks about the early years and take a peek into the future. 

Tune in every Wednesday to hear our experts' insights and worldwide examples on how digital technology could benefit every society.

Aug 05, 2020