Tallinn Digital Summit to host top-level global debate on the future of digital societies

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On 15-16 October Estonia will host the Tallinn Digital Summit 2018. Held annually, it’s an invite-only gathering of government leaders and ministers from digital-minded countries, the tech community, and influential thinkers. This year’s summit will focus on artificial intelligence (AI) and global trade in data, as well as on their implications for governance, economies, and societies as a whole.

Estonia’s Prime Minister, and the summit’s host, Mr Jüri Ratas sees Tallinn as a natural platform for the Digital Summit as Estonia has been at the forefront of digital societies for about 20 years. A digital society only works when people trust and actually use digital channels. By and large, Estonians do and it has helped us to gather lots of anonymous raw data. This data, however, is fuel for machine learning and other technologies.

Beyond sharing Estonia’s experience, there are other universal issues at stake. “When we discuss the future of AI, it’s really the future of humanity we’re talking about. We have a responsibility to do things right. There must be a sense of urgency. We need to create a legal and ethical framework that encourages innovation while protecting privacy and personal data, among other safeguards,” Prime Minister Jüri Ratas said.

The summit will host officials and luminaries from Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, the United Kingdom, United States and Uruguay. Participants also include representatives of the European Commission.

From AI to future of work

Keynote speakers of the Tallinn 2018 Digital Summit include Greg Corrado, the Principal AI Scientist of Google, and Jack Clark, the Strategy and Communications Director for OpenAI. The summit’s knowledge partners are the McKinsey Global Institute, the Centre for Public Impact, the Lisbon Council and the European Centre for International Political Economy (ECIPE).

The McKinsey Global Institute’s session, led by James Manyika, will focus on the Future Economy and Solving the Skills Challenge. They will share their latest research through a briefing paper – The promise and challenge of the age of artificial intelligence.

Danny Buerkli and Margot Gagliani will be the facilitators of The Centre for Public Impact’s session. The discussion will run on the application of Artificial Intelligence within the government. They will also present some real use cases of where AI has already been applied in different government entities.

Lisbon Council’s session will focus on the questions of safety and security in the age of Artificial Intelligence. Lisbon Council’s discussion will be lead by Luukas Ilves.

As a part of the programme, the heads of delegations will have a private working lunch on the data economy and its impact on international trade policies and regulations. This session will be facilitated by Hosuk Lee-Makiyama, Director of the European Centre for International Political Economy.

The lunch will be followed by Tech Talks Session for experts, industry leaders and innovators. All in all, the summit will create a great platform for government leaders and ministers to discuss with experts and tech industry leaders how to face the challenges of the AI era and learn from each country’s best practices.

This year’s event follows an EU-level summit held in 2017 by the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. That event brought together EU heads of state and government and indicated the need for high-level global debate on digital issues.

About the Knowledge Partners

About The McKinsey Global Institute (MGI), the business and economics research arm of McKinsey & Company, was established in 1990 to develop a deeper understanding of the evolving global economy. Our goal is to provide leaders in the commercial, public, and social sectors with the facts and insights on which to base management and policy decisions. Current research focuses on six themes: productivity and growth, natural resources, labour markets, the evolution of global financial markets, the economic impact of technology and innovation, and urbanization and infrastructure.

The Centre for Public Impact (CPI) is committed to helping unlock the positive potential of governments. At the summit, CPI will contribute its expertise on how governments can use AI to improve outcomes for citizens, what appropriate governance structures may look like and how governments can strengthen the legitimacy of initiatives that involve AI.

 The Lisbon Council for Economic and Social Renewal is a Brussels-based think tank and policy network. Established in 2003 in Belgium as a non-profit, non-partisan association, the group is dedicated to making a positive contribution through cutting edge research and engaging political leaders and the public at large in a constructive exchange about economic and social challenges of the 21st century.

About The European Centre for International Political Economy (ECIPE) is an independent and non-profit policy research think tank dedicated to trade policy and other international economic policy issues of importance to Europe. It was founded in 2006 by Fredrik Erixon and Razeen Sally.

Find more information about the summit on the Tallinn Digital Summit’s webpage and Twitter.




Visit us physically or virtually

We host impactful events both in our centre and online for government institutions, companies, and media. You’ll get an overview of e-Estonia’s best practices and build links to leading IT-service providers and state experts to support your digitalisation plans.

Questions? Have a chat with us.

Call us: +372 6273157 (business hours only)

Find us

The Briefing Centre is conveniently located just 2 minutes drive from the airport and 10 to 15 minutes drive from the city centre.

You will find us on a ground floor of Valukoja 8, central entrance behind the statue of Mr Ernst Julius Öpik. Photo of the central entrance.

Valukoja 8
11415 Tallinn, Estonia