Entrepreneur and former Estonian Government CIO. European CIO of the Year 2014

Mälarsalen – Dag 1 kl 09:30 – 10:30

Taavi has a strong background working in private sector. He started his career as a programmer, rising to be a CEO of the largest software development company in the region – Webmedia (now Nortal). In 2012, he sold his shares in Nortal and accepted Estonian Government offer to become country’s first Chief Information Officer. Now he is back in private sector, helping his start-ups and consulting large enterprises and governments on digital transformation. He is also a very popular and visionary speaker in large conferences world-wide.

As an engineer and CIO, he has been the brainpower behind many Estonian e-government innovative initiatives like e-residency (digital citizenship), data embassies, country in the cloud, no-legacy policy, VAT fraud detection etc.

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

Education: Master of Science of Engineering (focus: ICT) cum laude, PhD Studies in Tallinn Technical University


  • The Order of the White Star III class assigned by the President of Estonia, Toomas Hendrik Ilves
  • Computerworld 2016 Premiere 100 technology leaders
  • European CIO of the Year 2014 (by ICTSpring)
  • Entrepreneur of the year in 2011 (by Earnst&Young)
  • The president of the Estonian Association of Information Technology and Telecommunications (2009-2013)

His most popular keynotes around the world:

  1. Trust your engineers– explaining digital journey of e-Estonia and how Estonia became the most advanced e-government.
  2. 7 principles for creating digital society– a roadmap for governments and cities: what needs to be put in place technologically and institutionally to make digital society happen
  3. Beyond digital government– inspirational speech explaining what can be achieved and accomplished if the country is truly digital. How it changes governing models, How countries become borderless (e-residency) and virtual, is it possible that government has a real-time overview about the whole economy etc
  4. How I failed as a government CIO – especially popular among techies. Describing in humorous way what can go totally wrong even in tech-savvy countries.