From 18th-20th May, Russell visited Tallinn for a busy schedule of meetings and to attend Latitude59 on its 10 year anniversary! Here are his highlights & insights from Estonia - the world's most digitally enabled society...
The trip began with a warm welcome at the e-Estonia briefing centre where delegates heard about eID – Estonians state-issued digital identity. An integral part of daily life, eID’s are used in the public and private sector from paying bills, voting, signing contracts, accessing health records and more. Plus, since 2014, the e-Residency program is available for anyone who wishes to access Estonia’s diverse digital services, regardless of your citizenship or location. Follow this link if you would like to join the new digital nation.
"Estonia has given an entirely different outlook on what a truly human-centric society entails for digital citizens." – Forbes
Russell also enjoyed discussing the entrepreneurial ecosystem with Accelerate Estonia who ‘combine the urgency of start-up's and the power of the public sector to test, validate and build solutions to global wicked problems’ and meet with Ross Allen, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to the Republic of Estonia, to talk about international relations and trade.
Then, of course, there were the two unmissable days at Latitude59 2022 with the theme of Purpose and Inclusion. The event brought together tech entrepreneurs, investors and leaders from around the world to network, pitch and continue to be inspired by conferences covering topics from Web3.0 to the metaverse.
With the most unicorns per capita in Europe, there’s clearly a lot we can learn from Estonia. Here are Russell’s initial takeaways from his time in Tallinn…
1. Positivity around innovation is critical to developing our societies through technology.
2. Wealth creation alone is not enough to drive success there must be purpose in your actions.
3. Clarity of vision, clear communication and passion are still keys to success.
4. Education must be about the development of problem-solving skills and a willingness to challenge the status quo.
5. Breaking down barriers between State Institutions and the world of the entrepreneur is essential to allow technology to be used to improve the lives of all.
6. We must break the assumption that "silicon valley has a monopoly on success". 11 Unicorns from a population of 1.4mcitizens proves this.
7. Do not assume your years of experience grant you privileges, only the ability to deliver does.
8. Build global first will work only if your strategy ensures your solution allows you to win international clients. Otherwise, you risk being trapped in your home market.
9. Building, nurturing and using international networks is now a fundamental skill set of every entrepreneur.
10. English remains a critical skill.
And there's more... Russell is thrilled to have secured a variety of speakers at the forefront of the Estonian tech ecosystem to delve deeper in the upcoming QEvent Series, produced by the Scottish Business Network.
Click here to register for the international gathering on June 9th with focus on our links to Tallinn: QUAICH Events by SBN (heysummit.com)