23 Sep 2014

How Estonia became the world's leading hi-tech society

From Nine To Noon, 9:26 am on 23 September 2014

Estonia has become the first country to allow online voting in its general elections, has the fastest broadband speeds in the world. 95% of the population files its tax returns online, and it has the highest number of startups per head of population of any country in the world. Linnar Viik is a computer science professor, internet guru, and leader in Estonia's high-tech industry. He is one of the founders of the "Tiger Leap" Foundation, which in 1996 started massive computerization of Estonia's schools. He started also a network of open Internet access points all over the country and led countrywide Internet awareness and training campaigns. In 2000, Mr Viik helped Estonia become the first country in the world to adopt a system of e-governance, changing its cabinet meetings to paperless sessions. He discusses how good online government works, and how to foster a flourishing startup culture.