May 2018

Baltic Tiger in the Digital Jungle: Estonian Lessons in Building a Digital Nation

11:30am-1:30pm | The Omni King Edward - 37 King St. E. , Toronto

As Canada looks to greater digital integration through e-services and a digital government, concerns about privacy and cyber security remain while new opportunities emerge. How can Canada benefit and learn from the Estonian experience as we look to a future Canadian e-government? Join us as Peter Kent, who is currently leading a Parliamentary study on e-government, privacy and security, discusses the opportunities and risks of e-government with Estonia's Prime Minster, Jüri Ratas and Bianca Wylie, Senior Fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation.

Estonians can conduct all aspects of their everyday lives online - from voting to signing legal documents; accessing medical records to seeing who accesses their documents online. The Estonian government has opened an e-residency program, allowing entrepreneurs around the world, to apply for e-residency in Estonia and establish new businesses in the country. In 2007, Estonia was the first nation in history to be targeted by foreign state sponsored cyber-attacks that affected government, media and banking infrastructure in the small Baltic Sea nation. From that experience, Estonia built robust cyber defences and has been a champion on these issues internationally.

- Lunch will be served -

Member price:
Individual seat: $89 +HST
Table (seats 10): $800 +HST

Regular price:
Individual seat: $110 +HST
Table (seats 10): $990 +HST

- For information about accessibility, please email merpaw@economicclub.ca
- Dietary restriction notes and meal requests must be submitted to merpaw@economicclub.ca by Wednesday, May 23, 2018

*The views expressed on the Economic Club platform are not that of the Economic Club or its affiliates but of the speakers alone and the organizations they represent*

Bianca Wylie

Senior Fellow
Centre for International Governance Innovation

Bianca Wylie

Bianca Wylie is a CIGI senior fellow. Her main areas of interest are procurement and public sector technology. Beyond her role at CIGI, Bianca leads work on public sector technology policy for Canada at Dgen Network and is the co-founder of Tech Reset Canada. Her work at CIGI focuses on examining Canadian data and technology policy decisions and their alignment with democratically informed policy and consumer protection.

Bianca has a dual professional background in technology and public engagement, having worked at both Thomson Reuters and Swerhun Facilitation. She is a strong advocate for open government. Bianca founded the Open Data Institute Toronto (2014), and co-founded Civic Tech Toronto (2016). In 2017, Bianca took part in a City Hall Task Force organized by the University of Toronto School of Public Policy and Governance and she sat on the Ontario International Open Data Charter Advisory Board. Bianca is a guest lecturer at Schulich Executive Education Centre, a tech columnist, and a speaker on open government and public sector technology policy. Bianca currently sits on the Toronto Public Library’s Innovation Council. She holds a bachelor of arts in political science from York University

Jüri Ratas

Prime Minister of Estonia

Jüri Ratas

Jüri Ratas was born on 2 July 1978. He has finished Nõmme Secondary School in Tallinn, graduated from Tallinn University of Technology in the area of Business Management and obtained his Master´s degree in Economic Sciences
from the University of Technology. He also holds a Bachelor´s degree in Law from the School of Law at the University of Tartu.
Jüri Ratas has broad work experience in different areas. His first positions were Analyst of the Building Research Institute and Market Researcher of ANR Amer Nielsen Eesti OÜ, then he was appointed to the Chairman of the Management Board of the car service Värvilised OÜ (1999-2002) and worked as Sales Representative of the insurance company Sampo Eesti Kindlustus (1999-2000).
Jüri Ratas has also contributed to the development of Estonian basketball, in 2001-2002 as the Head of Youth Basketball of the Estonian Basketball Association and from 2012 to 2016 in the position of the President of the Estonian Basketball Association.
His service in Tallinn administration started in 2002 when he was elected the Economic Adviser to the Tallinn City Office (2002-2003). During 2003-2004 and in 2005 Jüri Ratas served as the Deputy Mayor of Tallinn and from 2005 to 2007 as the Mayor of Tallinn. He has been elected to Tallinn City Council in 2005, 2009 and 2013. In 2007-2016 Jüri Ratas held the position of the Vice-President of the 11th, 12th and 13th Estonian Parliament.

The Hon. Peter Kent


The Hon. Peter Kent

Peter Kent was first elected to the House of Commons representing Thornhill in 2008 and sworn into Cabinet as Minister of State of Foreign Affairs, responsible for the Americas.

Re-elected in 20ll, Peter was appointed Canada's Environment Minister and served in that capacity until July. 2013. In October, 2013 Peter was elected Chair of the House Standing Committee on National Defence. In October, 2015 Peter was again re-elected as MP for Thornhill and appointed Deputy Critic for Foreign Affairs. In Summer 2016 Peter was appointed as Critic of Foreign Affairs.

Prior to his election to the House of Commons, Peter was a broadcast journalist, having spent more than 40 years working as a writer, reporter, producer, anchor and broadcast executive in Canada, the United States and around the world.

He covered stories that shaped the 20th Century, including momentous events such as , the Vietnam and Cambodian conflicts and recovery, decades of conflict, uncertainty and hope in the Middle East, the Ethiopian famine, the transition from Rhodesia to Zimbabwe, South Africa’s transition from the apartheid era to Mandela’s presidency, the overthrow of Idi Amin, the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of the Cold War.

Peter won a number of awards over the course of his career, including the prestigious Robert F. Kennedy Award. He is also a member of the Canadian Broadcast Hall of Fame.

A passionate believer in community involvement, Peter actively supports a number of charitable organizations. He has served as a mentor with the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council and was on the Toronto cabinet of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. He remains involved with the Royal Conservatory of Music, Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center, and the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.

Peter is married to Cilla. They have a daughter, Trilby, son-in-law, Daniel and granddaughter, Clea.

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