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Toomas Hendrik Ilves

Former President, Estonia

Toomas Hendrik Ilves

Residency Dates: Oct. 24-Nov. 6, 2022

Public Talk

Digitization of Governance and Public Services
Oct. 24, 2022 | Video
Estonia is one of the most digitally advanced nations through innovative policies that invested heavily in the future. In this talk, we learned how former Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves (2006-2016) spearheaded his country to become a leader in digital governance and cyber security.


Toomas Hendrik Ilves is the former President of Estonia, a post he held from 2006 to 2016. Prior to his presidency, he served as vice president of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament from 2004 to 2006, foreign minister of Estonia from 1996 to 2002, and Estonia’s first post-independence ambassador to Washington from 1993 to 1996.

Ilves is best-known internationally for his work from 1995 to 2016 pushing Estonia to digitize its government. Currently, he is co-chair of The World Economic Forum’s working group focused on Global Futures Council on Blockchain Technology. He is also a member of the Munich Security Conference Advisory Council, the German Marshall Fund’s Alliance for Securing Democracy and the World Bank Identification for Development (ID4D) High-Level Advisory Council. He sits on the advisory board of the Oxford University Centre for Technology and Global Affairs, and the Board of Free Russia Foundation. Additionally, he is a distinguished fellow at the Center for European Policy Analysis and a distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution. He also serves as the commissioner of the WHO Pan-European Commission on Health and Sustainable Development.

He is currently writing a book on democracy in the digital era.