Taavi Kotka

Entrepreneur and first CIO for the Government of Estonia; Pioneer of e-Estonia

Speaker Fee Range: $5,000 - $20,000 USD

Travels From: Tallinn, Estonia

Taavi Kotka is available for virtual keynotes and webinars. Please complete the form or contact one of our agents to inquire about the fees for virtual engagements. Please note: the fee range listed above is for in-person engagements.

Technology Speaker Taavi Kotka
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    Taavi Kotka

    Entrepreneur and first CIO for the Government of Estonia; Pioneer of e-Estonia

    Speaker Fee Range: $5,000 - $20,000 USD

    Travels From: Tallinn, Estonia

    Taavi Kotka is available for virtual keynotes and webinars. Please complete the form or contact one of our agents to inquire about the fees for virtual engagements. Please note: the fee range listed above is for in-person engagements.

    Taavi Kotka Speaker Biography

    Taavi became Estonia’s first ever Chief Information Officer in 2013 to oversee the country’s development as an advanced digital nation. He previously worked in the private sector, starting his career as a programmer before rising to be the CEO of the region’s largest software development company, Webmedia (now Nortal). During this time, Taavi was named Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year.

    As Estonia’s CIO, Taavi introduced a number of new ideas that have come to define the concept of ‘e-Estonia’ as a digital nation and these best practises are now being copied and implemented by other governments around the world. This includes the e-Residency programme, which has placed Estonia at the epicentre of the global tech community, as well as innovations such as data embassies, country-as-a-service (CAAS), the no-legacy policy, VAT fraud detection, and others. As a result of his work in the public sector, Taavi was named European CIO of the Year 2014 and received Estonia’s prestigious White Star III Class Order in 2016.

    Taavi is now back in the private sector, helping startups develop and consulting large enterprises and governments on digital transformation. He is also a very popular and visionary speaker at large conferences around the world.

    Taavi is also now a special advisor to European Commission vice-president Andrus Ansip on European Digital Single Market.

    Taavi Kotka Keynote Topics

    Our world is about to undergo radical transformation, but are governments ready? Just like there has been disruption in areas like transportation (Uber) and accommodation (Airbnb), there will be disruption in the public sector as well. Using e-Estonia example, Taavi will explain in his exceptionally humorous way how governments cannot enjoy being the monopoly anymore and how this will hit countries both big and small around the world. Virtual countries, data embassies, digital citizenship and national cryptocurrencies will all be discussed. The audience will be inspired, slightly worried and full of interest to study and discuss more about the change affecting their own sectors and how they can prepare.

    Taavi will explain how Estonia became e-Estonia, the world’s most advanced e-government. Using real and fascinating examples, Taavi will demonstrate why it is important to focus not only on technology but also to shift people’s mindset across the whole of society. Our understanding of privacy and data protection is just as important as cloud or strong digital identity. Country wide reforms take time, but Taavi will explain how to use certain catalysts that can speed up the process: like once-only policy, no-legacy policy, innovation through pain etc. If time permits, Taavi will also discuss the future of countries and e-governments.

    Taavi will provide a clear and comprehensive roadmap for governments and cities about what needs to be put in place technologically and institutionally to become a digital society. This talk is designed for audiences who already know that the change is needed and is looking for practical guide to the steps that need to be taken to achieve that change.

    The journey towards digitalisation is fascinating, but where to next? This inspirational speech explains what can be achieved and accomplished if a country is truly digital. How does it change governing models, how can countries become borderless (through e-Residency) and virtual, is it possible that a government has a real-time overview about the whole economy etc. Taavi will provide concrete and tangible examples that every person can relate to themselves.

    Taavi Kotka Speaking Videos

    Taavi Kotka - Digitally-transforming Estonia
    Taavi Kotka - Winter Is Coming!