Studies

International MA programme 'Politics and Governance in the Digital Age'

Programme Manager: Prof. Dr. Dr. Robert Krimmer 
Programme Coordinator: Dr. Liisa Talving 

Is digital transformation taking over the society? How are governments tackling secure data exchange and cybersecurity? How is and how should data analytics be employed in politics and governance? Are governments and public institutions allowed to profile citizens? Could digital transformation lead to greater discontent with politics and renewed authoritarian tendencies? How can democratic political leaders govern with higher efficiency whilst respecting citizens’ data privacy? 
Our MA programme provides in-depth knowledge about core topics of political science such as modern political institutions, elections, political behaviour and ethics, combined with data-driven governance, e-democracy and critical thinking in the digital society. This is reinforced by training in data analytics, research methods and quantitative and qualitative analysis techniques.

Read more about our international Masters' programme in Politics and Governance in the Digital Age 

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Lecture series on digital governance

Every month on the second Friday in Zoom we will discuss different aspects of digital governance with high-level researchers and practitioners from Estonia and abroad. The lectures will be fully online in Zoom, in English, and  moderated by Professor Krimmer. 

To join us for these interesting discussions please pre-register at: https://ut-ee.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJYvfu-gqTwoE9RX0_US5kI-LSgy-gBAt05s. After registration you will receive personalised Zoom link to join the meeting.

Spring 2022 series

11. February 2022 – "Election Technologies and Trust: Experiences from the 2017 Kenya Presidential Election”, Carsten Schürmann, IT University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Elections are devices to settle a civil conflict in a peaceful and orderly manner among the different stakeholder groups in society that represent opposing interests. Without trust, voters may not accept the result of an election, which can challenge peace, order, and human rights. In the lecture, Prof Schürmann will return to Kenya 2017 and analyze some of the challenges that election technologies have brought to the election.

BIO: Carsten Schürmann is a professor in computer science at the IT University of Copenhagen, where he heads the Center for Information Security and Trust. His research focuses on election security. He consults with governmental and non-governmental organizations on Internet Voting.  He has worked with the OSCE/ODIHR as a senior election expert and has been a member of several election observation missions, to Kenya 2017 (the Carter Center), USA 2018 (OSCE/ODIHR), and Estonia 2019 (OSCE/ODIHR). Prior to moving to Denmark, Carsten was a member of the computer science faculty at Yale University. He holds a PhD degree from Carnegie-Mellon University.

 

11. March 2022 – “Social Affordances of Agile Governance”, Ines Mergel, University of Konstanz

Agile governance refers to management practices that were developed in software design teams to innovate based on user needs, incorporate them into the design of a digital process or product and continuously iterate to adapt to changing requirements. It focuses on a user-centric mindset, questioning one’s own assumptions, learning through iteration and prototyping. These practices are now transferred into public administrations and need to be adapted to a context that is not focused on daily innovations, but stability, resilience and linear administrative processes. This lecture therefore introduces the concept of social affordances that civil servants identify when they are confronted with the necessity to become more agile and adopt an agile mindset. Affordances reflect the possibilities and also outline the hindrances that civil servants perceive when they are asked to adopt a new mindset or management practice. 

BIO: Professor Dr. Ines Mergel is full professor of public administration and digital governance at the department of politics and public administration, University of Kostanz, Germany. She is an elected fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration (class of 2018). Before moving to Germany, professor Mergel served as tenured associate professor of public administration and international affairs at Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. Her research focuses broadly on digital innovations in public administration. She is specifically interested in understanding how innovative practices can be adapted to the linear process-oriented routines of government.


8. April 2022  at 13 CET/14 EEST – " Preparing the state for the exponential age", Luukas Ilves, Estonia’s Government CIO and Undersecretary for Digital Development at the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications

As we enter a period of ever accelerating change, how can the institutions of the Industrial Age adapt to the needs of today?  Estonia’s remarkable digital transformation offers a key take on this question. Earlier this year Luukas Ilves took on the role as Estonia’s new Chief Information Officer, where he has the chance to influence this journey. In his talk, Luukas will give us an overview of the key questions he is asking in his new Office, as well as give us an insight into the major challenges and the drivers for digital transformation in the upcoming years.

BIO: Luukas Ilves is Estonia’s Government Chief Information Officer and Undersecretary for Digital Development at the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications. Most recently, Luukas was head of strategy at Guardtime, a leading blockchain company. He previously served in various positions for the Government of Estonia and the European Commission before joining the Lisbon Council, a Brussels-based think tank. Luukas is a graduate of Stanford University.



13. May 2022 at 11 CET/12 EEST  –  lecture is cancelled


10. June 2022 – at 11 CET/12 EEST  “eID in Belgium” Joep Crompvoets KU Leuven 
More info soon.




Autumn 2021 series on digital governance

We hosted public lecture series on different aspects of digital governance in fall semester 2021. The lectures series featured Prof Vincent Homburg ( Erasmus University Rotterdam/University of Tartu ), Prof Rune Halvorsen (Oslo Metropolitan University ) and Dr Dan Bogdanov (Cybernetica).

You can find short overviews and the lecture recordings here: Fall lecture series 2021



Spring 2021 Lecture series “Security, Democracy and the Digital World” with President Toomas Hendrik Ilves 

President Toomas Hendrik Ilves, Visiting Professor of Democracy in the Digital Age in University of Tartu, gave a series of lectures on “Security, Democracy and the Digital World” in spring semester 2021.  The lecture series was curated by Robert Krimmer, Professor of E-governance, Programme Manager for Politics and Governance in the Digital Age Master's Programme

See the topics and recordings of the lectures here: Spring 2021 lecture series



The lecture series is supported by ECePS ERA Chair in e-governance and digital public services project (Horizon 2020 grant agreement No 857622).