Digital citizenship, integration and participation – WS 12 2017
Digital citizenship today means more than just a national citizenship. Digital citizens are global citizens of somewhere and everywhere. Technology has developed so much that today physical national borders and restrictions are no longer present an obstacle. But still we face problems relating to the digital access, which is key component in understanding digital citizenship. Therefore we believe it is very important to establish trust and transparent digital society.
The questions below to guide the discussion during the session:
1) What digital citizenship mean to you?
2) As digital citizens, how can you define the level of e-accessibility in your country? (access to resources, government services, online contributions through social networks and platforms)
3) What are the obstacles and risks behind it?
4) How to secure digital identity for all?
5) How citizens of somewhere and everywhere can be better involved and integrated to the digital society?
6) What would the perfect digital society look like for its citizens?
7) Can we imagine a country without boarders?
The workshop will also explore and emphasize Estonian digital society, which has one of the most digitally advanced nations in the world.
digital citizenship, digital access, digital inclusion, accessibility, e-services, e-Government
In order to engage in 21st-century society, politics, and government, a digital citizen needs to be equipped to think critically, behave safely, and participate responsibly. Ensuring the proper digital competences is essential for digital citizens to interact and to keep up to date with the digital evolution that influences their day-to-day offline and online activities.
Digital society can bring about economic and societal gain, but dangers exist like social exclusion and further inequalities pose further risks. Therefore it is very important to establish trust and transparent digital society for it’s citizens.
Digital access is a key component of digital citizenship. Digital access is defined as "full electronic participation in society”. However, in Europe, citizens still live in very different digital societies and have very different access possibilities. In some countries citizens have barriers and miss out on goods and services or it’s harder to make business because companies can’t fully benefit from digital instruments. While some countries are more digitally advanced and have different e-services so citizens don’t even need to leave their homes: e-healthcare, e-banking, e-studying, e-tax and e-voting are just some examples.
In general the public needs to trust that organizations and government will not misuse their personal data and people have power over their information at the Internet. Also, digital citizen is always eager to ask more from the organizations and governments – to be better involved and secured at the digital world. On the other hand, some people still lack the digital access or have no digital identity at all.
At the session we will also emphasize the best practices of Estonia. e-Estonia refers to a movement by the government of Estonia to facilitate citizen interactions with the state through the use of electronic solutions. For example, Estonia is a first country in the world that provides to become world citizen – e-Resident, which is a transnational digital identity and available to anyone in the world interested in administering a location-independent business online.
Watch ordinary day of e-Estonian: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GA0xSls4Wj0&t=80s
Panelists will also bring in a counter perspective, complementing the discussion from a broader European angle, specifically from the industry sector, as well as the youth sector of today’s digital society.
We will have short presentations from panelists and then open the floor for the discussion to all participants and try to find the answer posted above. We will have an open discussion involving all stakeholders.
- Cuthbertson, Anthony (October 7, 2014). Estonia First Country to Offer E-Residency Digital Citizenship. International Business Times. Retrieved February 2, 2015.
- Scott, Mark (October 8, 2014). Estonians Embrace Life in a Digital World. The New York Times. Retrieved February 2, 2015.
- Measuring digital progress in the EU
- Insafe network of European Safer Internet Centres
- Better Internet for Kids project
- The voice of youth: Back2School as good digital citizens
- Growing Up Digital report from the Children’s Commissioner for England
- Lee Rainie (2008): Online child safety and literacy
- The Digital Competence Framework []
- Helen Aaremäe, Estonian Internet Foundation
Subject Matter Expert (SME):
- Olivier Crepin Leblond (EURALO)
- Alex Wellman, Head of Marketing for Estonia’s e-Residency program, the world’s first initiative to offer a government-issued digital identity to anyone in the world. Prior to moving to Estonia, Alex worked in Washington, D.C., for a national trade association and a United States Congressman;
- Clara Sommier, an Analyst within the Public Policy & Government Relations team at Google in Brussels. Before joining Google, she worked in the European Parliament for more than three years, focusing among others on fundamental rights, but also for the Brunswick consultancy group. She beholds a Master in European Affairs from Sciences Po Paris and a Master in Political Science from the Freie Universität Berlin;
- Kyritsis Haris, Greece, Member of the Greek Safer Internet Centre youth panel, university student at the the department of Informatics and Telecommunications of National Kapodistian University of Athens (NKUA) , Graduate from Experimental Lyceum of Anavryta;
- Sandra Särav, PhD candidate at University of Lausanne, Switzerland, writing her doctoral thesis on the topic of data transfer of EU citizens’ personal data to third countries, Junior researcher in Tallinn Law School of Tallinn University of Technology where she lectures on European Union law and legal framework of e-governance, she is also part of the Estonian EU Presidency team and working as a Counsellor for EU Digital Affairs in the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications;
- Marianne Franklin (PhD), Professor of Global Media and Politics, Goldsmiths University of London (UK), is Co-Chair of the Internet Rights and Principles Coalition at the IGF, and Chair of the Global Internet Governance Academic Network. You can follow her on Twitter @GloComm;
- Raed Yacoub (PhD) is a Lecturer in Computer and Digital Literacy at the Greenwich School of Management, Plymouth University (UK), and works with Marianne Franklin as Research Associate on the international research consortium, "Deathscapes: State Violence and Race in Settler Societies".
- Birgy Lorenz (PhD), Scientist at Tallinn University of Technology Centre for Digital Forensics and Cyber Security (project Cyber Olympic), Board member of Estonian Teachers of Information and Computer Science, ICT developer manager and ICT teacher at Pelgulinna Gymnasium, e-safetry trainer, developer/writer of materials, progetiger trainer at Information Technology Foundation For Education (HITSA), PhD at Tallinn University (Information Society Technologies)
- Ian Fish, British Computer Society. He looks to apply system of systems thinking to complex problems in the practical end of the enterprise risk management space. This space includes security (including cyber security), privacy, ethics and resilience (including business continuity and incident/crisis/disaster management).
Organising Team (Org Team):
- Louise Bennett, Chair of the Security of Expertise at the British Computer Society
- Fiorella Belciu, European Schoolnet
- Sabrina Vorbau, European Schoolnet
- Oliana Sula, Universiteti "Aleksander Moisiu" Durres
- Ms. Amali De Silva-Mitchell, Futurist / Consultant (UK citizen)
- Oliana Sula, Lecturer at Faculity of Business, Universiteti "Aleksander Moisiu" Durres
- Internet access is a basic human right that should be guaranteed to all citizens but there is a difference between “digital citizenship” and e-residency. Citizenship as a concept requires education and an increase of awareness and inclusion of marginalized groups.
- E-residency has different benefits from traditional citizenship which are business oriented, in the near future the challenge is different countries’ competition to gain more e-residents.
- E-participation of the citizens should be increased and the voice of the citizens should be heart online.
- Digital citizenship is connected to globalisation and it is build around the “trust” that governments haves in their citizens. Digital citizenship is not about to create a single system in all the countries but rather to create an interoperability among different systems.
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This text is being provided in a realtime format. Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) or captioning are provided in order to facilitate communication accessibility and may not be a totally verbatim record of the proceedings.
>> Imagine starting a new country completely from scratch, free from pre existing economic system, tax laws or formal government. A bankrupt country with future and direction completely into the hands of its people, that's the story of Estonia. Estonia just regained its independence, but with few resources and a small population, the country had to find a way forward. With the Internet beginning to boom, leaders decided to invest in and build an e society. The first project was Tiger Leap, it put the Internet in every school and got Estonians online fast. In 2000 Estonia became the first country in the world to declare Internet access as a basic human right, and today, Estonians are connected online using a mobile ID.
>> We can move online (Speaking off mic).
>> All of this personal data is protected by technology called Blockchain. As a backup, Estonia will create the world's first data embassy in Luxembourg, a storage facility to house a backup of Estonia's data capable of rebooting the country in case of a cyberattack.
The result of this is a country that runs as a tech startup. It teaches first graders how to code, has the world's fastest broadband, and holds the record for most startups.
Two Estonians created Skype, and sold for 8.5 billion, but instead of cashing out the ex Skypers reinvested in Estonia and launched new businesses. Increasing Estonia core business, too. With the introduction of e residence, it's hoping to invite entrepreneurs to come to the country.
>> (Speaking off mic).
>> So far, just 18,000 people have signed up, but some believe that with 10 million e residents paying 100 each, Estonia wouldn't even have to tax its citizens. Certainly, an ambitious goal. If only a place could start over from scratch could imagine investing the idea of a country where people could feel as much at home online as well as where they actually live. We'll see if the rest of the world takes a page from their book.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: So, welcome to the session of Digital Citizenship, Integration, and Participation. I am Birgy, your host today. We have a very nice panel, and we're going to talk about a lot of things today. Mainly about critical thinking, behaving safely, and participation.
On the panel we have Alex Wellman, head of the e Residency Program. We have Clara Sommier. We have Haris Kyritsis, you can wave. And we have Sandra Sarav, and we have done many things, but now I'm thinking you're sleepless because of things that are going on, but
>> SANDRA SARAV: Does it work, no? Yes. I've been sleepless because the any Maltese people here. They gave us a little surprise by telling us we have a Prime Minister but we don't have Ministers so maybe you can take over the presidency and lead the councils, which means all the work I had done goes to zero and I had to start over again, but it starts this week, so this is what she was referring to and that's why the sleepless nights.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Introduction later. This was a story but that's all. Thank you. And then we have Marianne Franklin from London, and we have Raed Yacoub. Now I'm going to give the floor to our panelists. They will tell a little bit about themselves and what they think that should be the topics today. And then we have a lot of questions, and we'll see what happens. Marianne, I will give the floor to you.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Thank you very much for having me. I'm representing the Internet rights and also my employer, Goldsmiths of London. There were five questions posted on the Wiki, big questions and very important questions. I'm developing some ideas from this morning's panel about digital citizenship and also developing points that were raised last year in Workshop 2 and Workshop 10 in Brussels about how we deal with Xs for large groups of people that we could call non citizens or not quite citizen, and those are the points I'd like to address.
Namely, migrants and refugees and asylum seekers. I want to say established free and affordable Internet access is taking a big step in the right direction, and I would like to commend Estonia for that because in that sense, Estonia as our host country is honoring Article 1 of the charter for the Internet that says this Axis 2 is indispensable for the full enjoyment of human rights, the right to freedom of expression, the right to education, the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association, the right to take part in the government of a country, the right to work, and the right to rest in leisure. The right to access to and make use of the Internet derives from the integral relationship to all of these human rights.
So, that's my positive point. Now, because we're here I'd like to make some critical comments if I may, as a critical comment because this is how we hopefully can move the ideas forward.
The notion here of digital citizens, I'm understanding more of what that might mean but it could mean many things, and I'm going to address it from a technical point of view, as a sort of invention and innovation of processes by which people gain or apply for what we call digital citizenship. Just to know residency is not citizenship. It's not the same.
The problem is, with these technical innovations is, they're very quickly separated from the much wider agendas that have to address social exclusion and inclusion, and the problem is, as governments and businesses, particularly in schools, and health institutions are reconfiguring the form as well as the substance of participation and they have to because more and more people are leading their everyday life online. We need a holistic understanding.
This understanding of the whole human technological economic, political, and social aspects are quite clearly articulated in the outcomes of the WSIS process in 2003 and '05 and more articulated and developed in how UNESCO is developing from the process. And if you read carefully between the lines between the assembly resolution in 2015, these resonate technology cannot be assigned and deployed alone, it has to be in context of sustainability, environmental and developmental, and of course all of these human rights, norms, and standards to which we aspire, as well as to which we're supposed to aspire.
So, this is my point. You can roll out all the programs you like, anywhere, e government, e residency, digital ways of doing a tax, and say look it makes things easier. My point is we have to be careful because it can actually make things more complicated and create more rather than less exclusion if you only focus on one particular aspect of the process, namely digitizing authentication or digitizing legitimation. You need to prove that you are who you are.
So here Blockchain is not the silver bullet to resolve authenticity and identity. It creates in itself another set of implications and consequences.
For those populations who are in this category of non or not quite citizens or undesirable populations, contested populations, these problems become more acute particularly, as they try to gain legitimacy in the host country.
But it's also the case for existing citizens, and I'm speaking here about the digital ID, the Digi ID. Some of you may have noticed the steps you need to take to authenticate who you are increasing, not decreasing. So, you now have to do Step 1, and then in the Netherlands there is a second step to authenticate the authentication, so exclusion can happen at any point. So rather than lower thresholds of entry, we're getting higher thresholds of entry. Okay, so governments need to understand this.
I have some other points. I'm not sure how to proceed. Say it all at once or come back? How do you want to proceed?
>> BIRGY LORENZ: I would like to proceed in that everybody has a little speech and then we're going to have questions. You made a lot of interesting points. I wrote down rights of access and citizenship, that we have only world, and it is sadly not online.
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Let's wait for him to come on first. We have to understand what is first, digitization or citizenship. Is there a narrow understanding or wider understanding, and that's what this workshop is understanding as I understand the questions? I'll continue later.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Alex?
>> ALEX WELLMAN: Thanks for having me today. To give you a little background information, the Director of the e Residency Program, Kaspar Korjus, was supposed to be here but he's celebrating the birth of his child a few days ago. I've been asked to step in and hopefully I can do a good job. I'm not Estonian. I'm from the U.S. Maybe you can tell. I've been working here over half a year now on the e residency program. Do we have any members in the room at all? Okay. I figured there must be a few in this crowd.
So, if you saw the video, before we had the panel, we were thinking of what we could show for a video, and I thought of this one from Fortune Magazine done last month was actually a really good overview of what Estonia has done to reach this point.
But as you know, in Estonia most things can be most business can be conducted online using the secure digital identity. In 2014, there was sort of this idea that, can we open this to more people? And it really came from the startup culture here, how to scale your business, or in this case, how to scale your country.
In late 2014, we started accepting the first e residents. I guess it's important to talk about what e residency isn't. There is a big difference between residency and citizenship and a bigger difference between e residents. The main benefit is the ability to access a digital identity for Estonia, and so since 2014 we've had over 20,000 people from 138 different countries sign up and become e residents of Estonia. And the primary benefit so far has been access to the business environment, so I think almost three years ago when e residency was started, no one really knew what the benefits would be. And, we like to think of it as a platform and we're continually adding services to the platform. But of course, the main benefit so far has been the ability to start and run a location independent EU based business totally online from anywhere in the world.
That's sort of the goal we've set for ourselves, is giving people access to the infrastructure they need to be successful entrepreneurs. And so far, e residents have started 3,000 companies in Estonia. And you know, I know usually when we talk about technology and there is always there always has to be an Uber reference whenever you talk about technology, so you're familiar with Uber? It's the largest, or one of the largest transportation companies but they don't own any cars or vehicles. And AirBnb one of the largest providers around the world but don't actually own any property. So, Estonia could actually be the largest country with population without actually having physical residents here, so it's really interesting.
So, I'm happy to talk here today about sort of, you know, the future and how e residents fit into Estonia, and especially, as Estonia only has 1.3 million citizens, so in the next few years we could see e residents exceed the number of actual residents of Estonia, and I think when you start to think about the impacts of this, really you know, what could happen and what that means for digital citizenship and digital identity in general. Thank you.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Okay. Thank you. I wrote down benefits from (?) and also, we have also some pictures running in the background, so this is my critical view because I did my BSD in safety, so maybe somebody is inspired of that. But Clara?
>> CLARA SOMMIER: Thank you. Clara from Google and YouTube as well. I'll focus my short presentation on accessibility. Some of you maybe already heard me speaking this morning, the co panelist on Digital Skills and Critical Thinking, so don't worry I won't repeat myself.
So, yes, if we are starting to talk about digital citizenship, the key is to make sure that Internet is accessible for everyone and everybody has access to the platform to express themselves. This is something really in the DNA of a company and make sure the Internet is for everyone. Three short points to kick off the discussion. First, pretty basic and simple, but it's worth repeating again and again, we just have to make sure to preserve an open Internet, and we see that there are still many threats coming our way in that direction. And the fear that we should not overshadow the opportunities of the digital word as word of open expression and citizenship, that's the first point I wanted to make.
Second is, we need to help people find their voice online. There is huge potential without any support or infrastructure to just say what they're thinking and express themselves. That's something that we try to support, and we're very proud of especially, on YouTube on the community that is being created, where lots of people who care about different issues and make their voice heard will start campaigning on YouTube, and we try to support them through a program called Creators for Change. I don't know if some of you have heard about it. So, we try to support the YouTubers. We give them production grants, facilities to shoot videos to create social change. So, if they have a campaign, something they care about, promote tolerance in the world, fight against climate change, raise awareness. We try to hope them be more visible out there to really have the digital citizenship online.
And the last part, building on what has been said. If we want Internet to be accessible for everyone and everybody to be a citizen of this digital world, we need to think of more disadvantaged groups that don't have immediate access to the Internet, so it's a philanthropic arm called Google.org working on that also.
So, there are two mainstreams to that part. First, we try to work with disadvantaged groups, so always the way we work with them is that we work with civil societies who put the project for an engineer so we can bring our technical expertise to their project and, of course, for grants so that they can happen.
So for instance, we work in Germany with a local association on the integration of refugees, so we provide them with Chrome Books to constantly learn and engage. The second group when we talk about this topic, we have to make sure to understand is disabilities. We have to make sure everybody has access built in the product from the start to make them accessible, and this is really key.
And on that, we also have many projects, just to mention one we're doing in the UK. We are working on the beacon technology, so the beacon is just sending a signal for people, for blind people so that they can take the subway, so meaning they can with an app, go on the subway, and they will receive signals from the beacon on their mobile phone to tell them which direction to go, go right, go left, so yes. That's the key message and topic to accessibility and making sure that Internet can be for everyone.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Thank you. I wrote down open Internet and having a voice. My students all want to be a scientist (?) now. So, thank you.
>> HARIS KYRTSIS: My name is Haris from Greece, and I study at the University of Athens. I believe I'm here to represent the feelings about the digital citizenship matters, and that, we'll talk later.
>> A great discussion later.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Thank you. And now we have Sandra. Now you can have your story.
>> SANDRA SARAV: Okay. I'm not going to tell the full story, otherwise, it will take too much time. So, what she meant by saying I've done many, many things. So normally, people ask me what I do, I have different identities.
So firstly, I'm a PhD student in the University of Tallinn, and e Governance and EU Advisor for Digital Affairs in Estonian Economic Affairs and Communications, so hence the presidential talk beforehand.
I'm not going to talk about myself anymore. Just focusing on this role that I have as a researcher or a junior researcher, a legal scholar, the proper thing to do first is to ask what is digital citizenship in the first place, so no one has mentioned this here, I think.
So, what I would say as an Estonian, because I think I'm the only Estonian on this panel, yeah. So, for me being a digital citizen is meaning the way I interact with the Estonian government and certain private service providers.
So, if any EU national of any EU member state is also a citizen, simultaneously of the European Union, I would like to believe that any Estonian citizen is also a digital citizen. It's because the way we wrote or declare our taxes, access medical records, et cetera. Everything is done digitally.
I just checked this morning. We have more than 600 million digital authentications since the ID cards were issued to us, so since 2002.
So, going down to my next identity, or pillar, which means a Swiss PhD student. So yes, I'm a digital citizen in Estonia, but what does it mean as a Swiss PhD student? It means nothing, besides the fact that Swiss have been making ID cards since 2002.
So basically, when I applied for the PhD program and I was accepted, I had to go to Switzerland, meaning I had to fly from Tallinn, and travel through, get a physical signature, come back the same route just 100 Euros poorer. If I would have applied as Fall 2018, or EU members, then it would mean thanks to the regulation, which I think you're familiar with, I should have been able to do this with only one digital signature. There is the difference. I'm a digital citizen in Estonia, but it doesn't apply across boarder. My problem is if we're becoming global citizens, why don't we have global digital citizenship?
And then moving to the next continent, in India for the past eight years, they have been issuing this 12 digit identity code, and if India has 1.3 billion citizens, so with three zeros more than Estonia, they're also issuing the digital citizenship. And in India, people currently are only currently 65 million people have physical passports, but now over 90% of the citizens have digital identity codes, meaning that they have access to services which they never had access to before because they weren't identifiable by the government.
So, you see the digital citizenship or digital code can also provide you this interaction with the government, but if in Estonia we are really satisfied with what the government gives us, I mean, more or less to the most extent, then actually the Indian people are suing the government. They're suing against this law, which they say they don't want to give away their biometric data to the government. They think that now the government acts as a huge surveillance tool and they don't want to give their fingerprints or iris prints.
So, you know, there are differences, but what I think is that it's not about the institutions. The government system, the citizen, I mean, all of this, yes, but it's all about trust. The government must trust its people to allow them this digital citizenship and the citizens must trust their government in order to use those services.
So, I think the digital citizenship to a large extent is about trust. And this is my introduction. Thanks.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Thank you. So, I write that future, quicker, smarter, and safer.
>> SANDRA SARAV: Sure, yeah.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Now, we have mics here, a mic here, and here. So, who would like to ask a question? No one? There is nobody in the room. So, what would be the problems with citizenship and noncitizens, Marianne, what is the solution, obstacles? Can we have a mic here?
>> MARIANNE FRANKLIN: Yes. Citizenship is traditionally and legally premised on physical territories, so the convenience that we all experience when we don't have to spend 1,000 Euros to sign something, we all rejoice in that. But we're just the top layer of the chocolate cake, so to speak.
The rest of the cake is actually not able to get on a plane, and necessarily the necessary payoffs are not automatic just by accessing.
Authentication, legitimation are culturally embedded. I understand the Indian populous objections to what's going on. The means by which you verify someone to prove who they are doesn't necessarily have to entail biometrics. Who said it had to be biometrics?
So, there is a whole lot of technological rush into technologizing processes and relationships that are deeply culturally embedded. I don't want to sound like a technophobe, but to be critical, we have to be aware that the higher the tech the higher the threshold of entry. When it comes to citizenship, it's a political issue and not simply a technical issue.
So, for all of those in the gray zone, for instance those who cross boarders as a matter of a way of life, who do not record themselves citizens or members of one country or one culture, they are multiple citizens of many cultures.
My feeling is, the way the digital design is emerging is actually narrowing our understanding of belonging and restricting our understanding of inclusion, which is counter intuitive to the promises that the technology may hold, so my point is that this goes right back to the very first phase of design.
You design for those who are most likely to be left out, not for those who are already in. I think that's the challenge for governments who really want to offer radical ways to facilitate access to key services. So, the Estonian's example is, as I read it, very fantastic, but for legitimately currently understood Estonians and those who have a relationship to Estonia, but if you've just arrived and are struggling to get residency in any part of the EU, are these procedures open to you?
Anybody going through these procedures, and I have as well, because I'm not an EU citizen, discovers separate roles. There isn't one role. Do we live in a global world where boarders don't matter? Some of us do, but the majority of us do not.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Uh huh. We had a very nice picture here where there is old man and lady with a mouse that they have catch now and maybe sadly (?).
So, what are we going to do with so inclusion issues are real important, but we had questions?
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Yes, I would like to pick up on two things. One is, digital citizenship across borders. I think the way to encourage digital citizenship across borders is make sure all countries sign up about how they give digital citizenship to their citizens, which is a bit of a mouthful, and I know I've done this to people before, but I think these principles of identification on the Internet for sustainable development orchestrated by the World Bank Group, including UNESCO and many other organizations, particularly, coming from third worlds, has 10 very important principles that chime with everything that everyone has said on inclusion, universal coverage, and accessibility, design, robust safeguarding, data privacy, establishing clear mandates, and accountability and enforcing legal and trusted frameworks.
If one knows that all countries are doing that, and it is totally compatible with the spirit of GDPR but done in proper plain English on a side of A4s which makes it a hell of a lot better, I think then the digital citizenship from different countries will be much more easily accepted across borders, and that's really important.
But I've got another point that I'd like to make and ask the panel about, and that is for me. Citizenship has much more than your nationality. It is about being a good moral and ethical person, and so that comes back to teaching people from an early age how to behave responsibly and safely online, and that is one of the things that I know Estonia has done really well in teaching people from a young age how to be responsible, safe, and secure online, and it also speaks to that I've got the mask, what shall I do with it.
Because a lot of things older people are frightened about going online, are losing their identity, and not knowing how to stay safe online, so you have to teach young people right from an early age, but you also have to teach older people how to how to use new services safely and well. So, I would very much like the panels opinion on that.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Okay. I will take the first comment. Estonia is now ready to launch our new curricula in informatics and it's really from the first 9th graders, there will be a safety curricula, and also, we're going to do ad nauseam level for that. What are we going to do for older people? Maybe someone wants to comment?
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: I think it's a good idea to have some government agency to go to the homes of old men or citizens who doesn't who don't have a digital education to teach them how to use this platforms to be easier for them to pay taxes or make any arrangements from their computers or with their kids maybe.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Uh huh. So, I think also that children that we taught in the schools can teach their parents and grandparents. Yeah. This is very good practice.
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Couldn't agree more. So generally, everything that has to do with digital skills or digital literacy is essential, that's why we try to support those projects that are done by the civil society as much as we can. And on that, I think it's also important to stress the dimension. We had a bit of a debate this morning, of doing an online and offline, to have an online part, but also a part where you do training on the side because I think that's the key difference, and we really have to combine both. And on senior people, I couldn't agree more. I'm actually doing a volunteering project in rest homes to teach older people how to use the Internet to connect with their family and have exchanges, so I totally support it. Uh huh.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: In Estonia, we had many years ago, the project, Be Apart, this was for elderly people to come in the schools and then we would teach them how to use the Internet and Word and Excel and then also ticket and signing, and we did also that my students were teaching the elderly people. We had three meetings. The first time the elderly people listened. Next time they meet at their home or in the library. The third time, the older people came and asked questions that my young students couldn't answer about Skype and a lot of things that my students didn't use. They used Facebook or something like that, so this has been very funny.
And the other thing that has been is that in these trainings, a lot of older ladies came and men are still missing, so they are in the shops but not on the Internet, but yes.
>> I would like to pick up on a few things. First of all, you said that Estonians know how to behave responsibly and safely online, so you know the European test biggest case of Estonia about the online hate speech, so it comes from Estonia. So anyway, there is that.
Regarding including elderly people, well I gave my grandma two years ago a smartphone for Christmas, and I live briefly from Brussels, and then she would send me pictures of grandpa shoveling snow in the wintertime through Viper, should have used (?) with encryption, but anyway, then when they had the wedding anniversary with grandpa, they took turns to take pictures of each other and send to Brussels, so we are included. Also, my grandpa calls a few months ago saying he needs to renew his license, but lives 40 kilometers from the nearest office to do that, so he says that you're coming to (?) anyway, bring your computer we're going to do it online, because I know you can do it online. So, it's about showing them and teaching them that you can use those services.
And also, I think it's much more secure if you do it with one identity because in the online world, we can have several identities. I mean, I'm one person in the Estonian research portal. I'm doing PhD and have 42 research articles and this and that, and then a different profile on Facebook and then a different profile on Instagram and maybe on Instagram I only connect to people I want to show certain things I'm doing on holidays perhaps, but then again, we should still have only one actual identity, the social media profile. This relates to our behavior, but the identity remains the same, so in this way, I think it's perfect that Estonia has made mandatory the ID card and all the services we access are done through one identity so this minimizes the threat of identity theft, let's say.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Very interesting. Okay. Then a question there and then you.
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: I hear you, but we're here to try to unpack some of these assumptions. Does having only one identity in a digital form really protect us from identity theft?
It may, but what would be required to be sure about that? Secondly, is having a tax number an identity? So, I think sometimes we might have to be aware that the more that's my point. The diversity and the different levels of accesses of views and communicative cultures are being, if we're not careful, being squeezed out. So eventually it's only one sort of identity. It's only one sort of way of going online. It's only one sort of way to discuss online. There is only one set of morals that count. So, before we know it, we're actually we're actually undoing the very premise in which these 10 principles that we've just had presented to us are based to allow for variety and diversity, but also to be robust and transparent.
So, I think government service providers, private and public, really the bar is raised here and I'd like to have a little bit more discussion about where that one single digital identity is the way to verify everything forever and whether it is that safe from identity theft because we just have the one ID and if it's stolen you're really in trouble.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: I like that you are more like an artist than she's more like a lawyer. (Laughing). But you had a question?
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Hi, my name is Umatonic, the coordinator of UK based charity called Euro Resources Network. We help people from communities coming from all over the world living in the UK and helping to defend their rights.
Our observations are about the discrimination by us and also the issue of transparency and scrutiny. Having access to digital signature or digital citizenship, in our opinion, at the current picture, will not apply to all even if technically or on paper if it applies to all, there is always a risk that the system will train its artificial intelligence system put additional surveillance, additional questions, additional discretionary measurements towards some groups of people.
For instance, at present, in the case of the UK, the banks, including banks solely serving to charities, not for (?) organization, are asking the board members to clarify their current citizenship, if there is any change of citizenship, whether they're thinking of making any digital transactions to the other countries, and everything under the excuse of national security prevention of money laundering and funding federal regime, so having a kind of digital signature for everybody, in our opinion, will not prevent these conscious or unconscious bias or discrimination, and the same applies to employment rights.
Even if you have a digital ID, if you don't have full technically full citizenship of a country, then you may not apply to all jobs. Some jobs require that you are a full citizen by registration or by naturalization, and the digital learning opportunities, there is a discrimination in this field as well. Home students, EU students, and Aussi students pay different fees. If you're an actual physical student arriving in the UK, you pay three times more because you are not a EU student or you don't have EU citizenship or you don't have British citizenship, and so if this continues to apply on digital business learning on trying to find a (?), and it's unfair charging a fee system.
And also, because of the unfortunate events around the continent, around the world, nations or governments, including the UK government are always finding an excuse to restrict civil rights and liberties, and then with the excuse of national security the data gathering and the monitoring of unusual or groups of people who belong to certain ethnic origin or belong to certain cultural faith are susceptible to they're vulnerable groups. They're susceptible to more surveillance, and in a way as if the system asks the service providing bodies educational authorities, local authorities, healthcare providers, to become the voluntary police of the system, for instance, asking school children to clarify their country of birth, regardless of whether they are a citizen, whether they have mixed parents, one parent beings British and one from another country or naturalized later, so there is this way of the culture of boiling the frog slowly.
And the last point is the (?) about the collective views of the (?) suggest that global digital citizenship, not every regime, not every government in a given usual country behaves in the same way, and the states, my personal opinion, the states by its nature is oppressive and very suspicious institution, and so if many member states comply with the rules of ethics, rules of transparency and (?) to our citizens, you cannot guarantee these for every other country, so the question here is, do we think it's possible to set up a well functioning scrutiny body to make sure that these kind of data, through digital citizenship, will not be abused by one or more national regime or national governments? Thank you very much. Sorry it was a bit long.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Thank you. I think it's a question to Google. I'm sorry.
>> CLARA SOMMIER: On the scrutiny about making sure that the governments won't abuse the data, yes, but it seems like in the Internet we have one world and then there is the countries that want to medal with that. Google is providing the one world already. You have the freedom.
>> That's true. We are trying to keep the Internet as global as we can, and we've seen some things that you've been describing, we've been seeing it in some countries that there are some attempts to nationalize Internet in the way we see the Internet and operate. And this is something that is rising, and we see even more in many countries, and this is something that we're trying to push back against because we think the benefit of Internet is to being global.
You have to respect sometimes the local culture when there are some local sensitivities that make sense, but for the rest all the rights are global and should stay, so it's something we're depending and also defending the data that we're transmitting to governments in terms of the surveillance that has been explained, so we only we only give the data to the governments if there is a due process, a legal process, and we only transmit data that are proportionate. We never transmit the full key to the government, so we really try to defend your privacy and freedom of expression online.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Sandra?
>> SANDRA SARAV: Okay. I have been talking a lot, but okay. Just because what I proposed was not that everyone will have one digital citizenship, it's the services that we use, or each of the countries would mutually recognize each other's e services or solutions so that they are interoperable, such as we're trying to build in Europe in the EU with the EI Dysregulation that comes into effect from 2018 forward which I referred to earlier.
It's not just digital signature but using the cross border services and that we mutually recognize and are able to authenticate each other's EID system, so it's about interoperability and not that we have one common system.
In Estonia, we have the X road system. I don't know how many are familiar with it. It basically means different government services and service providers are connected to each other's databases. When you need access to another database's information, you pose a request to do it, and then you have to be accepted and then you can use this information there. And as an Estonian, I can go and see from the Estonian State Portal who has accessed my information, so maybe a doctor has accessed my medical records without my permission, and then I can take action.
And when I talked about the identity scheme and controlling this with EIDs that will be interoperable. I mean, this is what I see. I don't propose one digital citizenship, I propose interoperability across borders. Alex?
>> ALEX WELLMAN: Thank you. I just wanted to talk maybe a little bit about some of your points regarding discrimination and making sure that people have access to the services they need.
So, one thing with the e residency program I think we're trying to do, is just that, give people around the world access to a digital identity, and it happens to be in Estonia. I know there are some concerns and discussion here about one world citizenship or one world digital identity. I don't see that happening. I think with e residency, for example, I see actually in the future countries competing for digital citizens or for, you know, subscribers to their digital identity scheme, so Estonia is the first country to offer e residency which offers a digital identity to anyone in the world, but just last month, announced was a similar program and discussions with our neighbor, Lithuania, starting their own program, the Netherlands, starting their own program, so places like this.
So, I think, actually, countries will in the future compete for digital residents and this will sort of be a mechanism that can help police and solve some of these problems.
Also, I just wanted to talk about accessing services. One thing with e residency concretely that we're doing, in the Ukraine, for example, Ukrainians cannot access PayPal, but they can with e residency in Estonia access PayPal with us.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Okay. You know who wants to have access is Raed. Hello, Raed. I will switch to video.
>> RAED YACOUB: Hello.
>> Your web webcam is not on.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Hello?
>> RAED YACOUB: Good afternoon, and greetings from (?) London. Apology, I have some technical problems from my end, so I will have to catch up maybe of a few minutes of the discussion, but I think maybe one issue that I can add to that discussion maybe to culture and also talking about interoperability and discrimination of having the e residency and (Speaking off mic).
I thought maybe we can just highlight something regarding with people who might be discriminated. Specifically, I'm talking about identification and authentication of documents in the process of how, for example, a claim for residency is something that going on and then go beyond national of that country, so when I talk about different (?) and the identification card and how it can make things more difficult and more easy for some people.
For example, sharing some personal experience (?) in Europe. What institute about it is ID authentication and identification and how we can envision broadening a mechanism for identification of documents and make it accessible not only for North America, but ultimately, for people in other parts of the world, and their documents maybe would be could be, for example, an account as the standards here in Europe.
So (?), and of course, the refugees who sometimes or other people in another country had some different (?) so this might be one tenth of the hardness of (?) in society. And maybe I can just report (?). I like very much the (?) in society, and how we use then how we can maybe try to have more inclusion for as much people (?) as possible will have the (?) or other life or activities of these people, whether they're in Europe or North America or another part of the world. So that was mainly the main issue I would like maybe to share with the group to discuss this afternoon.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: So, thank you. And we have
>> So, the first the fact that education in terms of privacy, when it comes to the educational system itself, when it comes to high schools and schools, it might actually be relevant in a world where you cannot actually rely on your privacy.
I mean, most of the education is probably going to be based on a mainstream operating systems and casual means to protect yourself, but there is a couple of really good arguments against that.
First of all, I cannot rely on an institution or a legal frame or authority to protect me as long as there are 14 year olds in my country that can hack their systems and can hack institutions, so their credibility is flawed from that point of view.
>> (Speaking off mic).
>> aware, but most of the European, or Eastern European countries you don't really need a court mandate to obtain somebody's private information and access their computer and use it in a court of law, which means that you do not have the right for your
>> BIRGY LORENZ: To get your information without
>> the presumption of innocence, which is weird. So in terms of privacy, there might be a couple of issues and I don't think you can educate people towards that end.
I think you might be able to educate yourself, but as long as there is a big monopoly in terms of how computers work and what people have access to and people don't use alternative means to it, we're going to have a big issue with casual computer users, and that's not something that's going to be implemented soon in the educational systems. We've been trying that through alternative projects for not for underaged students, and we keep being denied from doing that from the centralized curricula in my country, at least, in Romania. Thank you.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: When I visited three years ago, one summer school in privacy and security, the main issue is that there is no privacy anymore. And then we did a picture and if they shared the picture online, everybody circled the black dots. It was so funny again. But do you want to comment?
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Yes, thank you very much. I just you had that cartoon about the kids not being able to connect. I think that illustrates part of the thing we parents need to think about. What are the alternatives within the design? What is the design's backup? What happens when the systems crash? We just had the British Airways example or across the world, the British Airways system crashed and the huge global ransomware attack, and as health records are electronic and that system crashes, but these systems are not only complex but arguably, technical engineers correct me, they're more susceptible to disruption. I know it's an engineer puzzle to make them robust and resilient at one end of the infrastructure, but on the other end, is it possible to develop and enjoy the advantages of doing this online and digitizing certain processes, but also to have backups that include the lo-fi option, like the non because what happens is I've seen it in classes, dependent on a PowerPoint presentation, academics dependent on being online and it crashes add they don't know what to do.
Are we designing backups for when it doesn't work? Because it will one day not work. That's my point, if we're overdependent on one thing and lose sight of other technical layers required, we can end up with bottlenecks and more problems at the end of the road.
So, in terms of a design term, I'm interested in the designers in the room and I can see two at least in front of me. How is that translated into a design paradigm for ensuring the individual, the organization, and the system that supports that relationship work?
And when they do not work, what are the backups and the alternatives available? Is there anybody who could share their experiences?
>> And not only the health records, they are digital signature. It's very sensitive to data. And many of the servers be secure, but if the end user, every citizen laptop is not secure because they don't know many of the citizens do not know how to use laptops securely, how can we be sure that the information won't get stolen?
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Yeah. We will be hacked, and the question is what are we going to do when it happens, probability, not that or if systems will fail. Do you have any idea?
>> So, to go with the digital signature. Estonia is not laptop dependent. It's a public key infrastructure and separate system that's connected to the microchip that's either on your ID card or on your mobile ID, and it's a two way authentication system, and it doesn't happen within the laptop. It happens above somewhere.
So, before someone mentioned what happens when we lose the one identity we have, the identity card. Then again, the Estonian identity system is not connected with this one physical card. It's connected to your personal number or your personal code that's assigned to you when you're born, so I have a mobile ID, I have a physical ID card. You can also have just the ID card that's for physical authentication or identification, so this authentication and digital signature system, it's not dependent merely on some physical assets.
And then there were some other points I wanted to raise that you had. So, what if the system crashes? Estonia has come up with digital embassies. What if the e voting system is interfered with? Think about the physical voting. You go somewhere in a booth, you write something on a piece of paper, and then you go and give this piece of paper to some person you don't know, and then it's put in a box and then it's taken and put somewhere at the back of a truck and taken somewhere you don't know. And, you trust this system more than your two way authenticated given vote that you do with your ID card? So that's my question. Yeah.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Okay. The issue probably that we can make are systems very secure, and then there is no electricity and nothing works. But the problem now days is more the human side of the things are designed faulty.
>> I'm enjoying it makes me sound like a real dialogue analogue crazy person. The thing about why people trust paper voting pen and pencil is because there are generations of monitoring checks and balances and visible controls in place, and even they, of course, don't work. And that's why you have electromonitors. What is not yet in place is this assumption that because it's technical or because it's digital, it is automatically better. It is not automatically, automatically better. It depends on the design.
There is really crap, excuse my language, there is really rubbish applications out there being pedaled as better. There is a normative assumption that we have to be careful because it's digital and computerized it's better. Not necessarily. It depends.
And, I think once we understand that, we'll understand that the reason why the Dutch electrovoting, they can be hacked. The fact that things can be hacked by all sorts of agents is a very real issue, but there are ways with traditional elections, pen and paper boxes that we have generations of ways of monitoring, some better than others, so I think this is a huge mistake to just assume because it's technically possible that it's better. It's all down to the design. I want to know about how the designs are being designed better that include the disadvantaged citizen, the homeless person who has forgotten their ID and who hasn't got a card. You can't get into a library anymore without proof of address. You can't get a bank account anymore without proof of address and they're all linked to digital forms of authentication. And this is a constant vicious circle, so those of us inside the magic circle, everything is fantastic, I'm totally with you. But I'm talking about the people outside of the magic circle, and there are more people outside the magic circle than in. And banking, to make banking digital, two thirds of the world's population who do not have a bank account, so that's rough statistics, someone please correct me, it's easily looked up, but a large number of people don't have a bank account.
>> (Speaking off mic). Of course, I agree that no system is perfect, but for people trusting pen and paper, I come from the USSR and I only have two words here, or three words. Krem 2014 elections.
>> Okay. I'm very (?) person. All of my things are online, and I use a lot of digital things. But you know, I can't get into Estonian startups because when I go there, I show my ID card or whatever, they don't want it. They want my email. I will not give them my email, so I can't get in there, so what? But you had a question?
>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Hi. From International Youth Service in Germany, we're working on a 2020 project, EU tools and Internet participation for people, so we are working with more specific audiences. So, to say and feel free also to join us on our open summit in Berlin where we will talk about youth participation in Europe. But also for the third key word on the title of the workshop, which was participation, and I'm not sure and I'm a bit surprised that since we are so phony about democracy crisis right now, the only thing what I hear here are services and actually e governance. However, I don't really see where the citizens are. Yeah? So, citizenship for me is something a bit more than signing or authenticating myself.
So, my question is, going into the direction of, is it really so? Is e participation the next step after digital citizenship or part of it?
And the other thing is, what do we see from our experience now? A couple of years we have been implementing e participation projects with young people, European wide, and it's not always a success and it's very hard to find good success stories. Why? Because we have too many failed promises for young people and they are losing their trust in the system.
And my question is, do you have any ideas or recipes how we can deal with that so the first step of young people joining the world of citizens who can also give their vote, but not necessarily only on e voting but also on deliberation, on becoming a real citizen in part of the community. Do you see this as the further way and whether a would you say are the determining factors?
>> BIRGY LORENZ: So Clara, you talk about voice and the freedom and the people.
>> CLARA SOMMIER: Yes, so I strongly believe in e participation, but for that you have to create first a space where the debate is possible before people can participate. So, for me, that would be the first point that we really have to achieve, and I personally do not feel we've already achieved it so far, but I hope we'll be able to help in that regard because Internet can really be this incredible space where we can all have our voice and that's what we're really committed to defend, so that at a later stage, we can really achieve an e participation because we've seen that we're very lucky and part of the magic circle.
Even here, we are like you, we can all discuss together which kind of Internet we want to have, but this is a much more global discussion that we should be having. Everybody should have their word and their say to, for instance, even for a company like us, we should hear from them what they want us to do, what is right, what isn't right, the way we behave, because we don't pretend we always have it right.
And so I do feel that, you know, in a lot of spaces even in very controversial content but hate speech, there isn't a global discussion of what is acceptable or not online. Where is the line that should be drawn between freedom of expression and making sure that there isn't any horrible content on the Internet, and this kind of debate I wish we had more so we had clear indication for everyone which direction we want the Internet to take.
And on the mysteries of the citizens and young people, if I may, for me also from my personal experience, I have the impression that you can only counter that if people have the impression that when they speak it matters, that they're heard, so it's really there is something to do on the political level.
And, I also do believe strongly in the power of role models, so if we have also a younger generation that also then carry this voice over and young people can hear them and see they also have a voice that can express.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Haris, a comment?
>> HARIS KYRTSIS: Yeah. The (?) in Greece we have a fairly decent platform. We can do referendums for many different things because young people want to participate in the actions of the state, and I believe it's good to have a digital citizenship that provide us with the vote for no cost because in Greece, we have no money to do referendum for everything.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Next?
>> Yes, I think it's a very important point. It's about who participates and where. I just wanted to remind myself as well, when we're talking about large groups of people, populations like those, who have housing difficulties, who are literally homeless, those who are arriving in severe conditions of malnutrition and dehydration from boats, there are also IT professionals among those groups.
As a homeless coordinator once told me, when they got online, he said that was a geek fest back there, so to assume that one population is either technophobe that's an answer we have to be aware of. For me, participation needs to happen in any ways in many levels and many forms of digital and combined digital and different spaces. I wanted to get away from either or. It soon will become just about signing on if we're not careful, and that will supposedly count for everything. It's not enough.
>> I did want to touch on this first, but I'm going to leave a comment as well, because I think that even though I'm a very technophile person, I would say, I'm skeptical about the whole thing because it introduces many new problems. Like how do you even know the computers of your population aren't infected by a bot. You don't know that, and if everyone clicks on, yes for an election, and then the bot votes for no, then you have no means of actually controlling that vote, and there are more such problems.
And, I think that we also have to ask the question, what is actually the benefit? Obviously, it sounds hip and cool to vote with your e device, but in the end, it boils down to participation in the vote and there you don't have like there are studies on that e voting doesn't increase participation in the vote. There are already good systems in place for voting. Why would we want to change them if there is no actual benefit for us other than, of course, yes, it's less inconvenient to not go to the voting ballet, but still that doesn't happen on a daily basis. It's such an overcomplication of a very straightforward system, I would say.
The point I was actually trying to make is that the colleague over here, I have forgot his name, mentioned there might be a future not too far away that there are countries competing with each other for different forms of residencies, and especially under the light that currently the Estonian e residency program is mainly targeting businesses for being as easy as possible to establish their businesses in that country.
I feel that might lead to a negative spiral where we have competition on the basis of different forms of incentives for businesses that might not be good for the general population, and we should keep that in mind as well because the benefits for normal people, for having such an e residency, are also near a future to come not really there in a different country. Yes, obviously it's nice to have my own e ID in my country for interacting with my government, but opening an e residency account in Estonia is just not attractive for me as a person.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Alex?
>> ALEX WELLMAN: Sure. So, I guess I can address maybe your concerns that you mentioned. You know, going forward, if we have a situation where competition is bad, and personally I don't see it. I don't see where that could be bad. I see countries competing for e residents and e citizens and all sorts of different levels of what they're offering to people. And then I see this forcing people's own countries to step up their own game, if you will, and improve their own services.
And of course, I think you're right. Free residency, the main benefit so far has been the ability to start a business in Estonia, and some people say, is that the only thing can you do? Yes, that's a fair criticism. I think at the moment we're still figuring out what exactly this means. Estonia is the first country to offer something like this where they're allowing people from around the world to access their infrastructure and apply to become an e resident, so we're still figuring out what this really means, but I would say that I wouldn't discount the business environment here.
I work with people every day in places like India, Ukraine, Turkey, entrepreneurs who need infrastructure to run a global business. In Estonia, by opening their infrastructure to these people, is really providing a solid solution and really impacting their lives and making them and giving them the tools they need to be successful, and it's just really great to see.
>> I'm going to very quickly jump in because I just want to make clear the point I was trying to make. What if we have now 10 different countries that offer that for everyone to open your business in that country for the EU market, for example, and now the first one starts giving you a tax credit because then there is an incentive to go there. And there you go and you start to spiral, and you will have to have legislation in place to stop that and like international corporations, which the EU is traditionally bad on when it comes to taxes and other forms of social regulation, so like there you go.
>> ALEX WELLMAN: Sure. Really quickly. So, I would say for the taxation, for the taxation issue, Estonia, one difference is, this is not Estonia is not Panama. You know, in many of these problems already exist, I think. There already are countries competing for businesses and offering different tax incentives whether it's Ireland or what have you, but actually, I think things like e residency are actually solving this problem because it's opening this up to more people.
In the past, you had to be very wealthy to sort of start your company in another country and offshore and access the tools, but with e residency, things like e residency, you can be just a one man company and start a business and choose which jurisdiction to start your company.
As far as taxes in Estonia, we want to share our tax, I think, with other countries. For example, if you're a e residents and you're creating value in Germany, we want to have an agreement with Germany to make sure that the fair share of the taxes is spread among the countries where the value is created, so I do think, you know, it's the opposite sort of problem of an offshore. We like to think of it as being an on shore program if that makes sense.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: So what would be the perfect ticket to society for its citizens, Sandra? We are wrapping up.
>> SANDRA SARAV: The one I live in now?
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Yeah.
>> SANDRA SARAV: No, I mean, there is no digital fairytale. It doesn't exist. We'll never know. I mean, we come up with new solution, news occurs, but you know, what brought us here doesn't take us forward, so you can never have a stand still. You always must go forward. You end up with new solutions. You try to see how it's going, but you have to ensure the take up. Mentioned in Estonia, the ID card is for anyone over 15 years old. We have 1.3 million people and 1.2 something million ID cards. When you show the people what it makes for them I mean, I can do my tax declaration in one minute and my friend in Germany says they have a tax lawyer to do taxes. My friend in U.S. said it is the worst time in the year to do taxes. I don't care. I vote online. 33% of the Estonians voted during the last parliament online, and I trust the system. I mean, it's a slow but steady progress that takes us to the perfect digital society.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Okay. Haris?
>> HARIS KYRTSIS: I think the main problem is the privacy and security issues, and the accessibility for people that don't know how to use the digital citizenship, yeah.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Okay. Thank you.
>> And I agree with the last point, so that it's really all about the openness and a space where everybody can have access, so accessibility, but also where everybody feels safe and they are safe to say what they think.
>> I would just I would just comment and say from my side, from the e resident and what Estonia is doing with this program, it's not solving all the problems. It's a very, very small start working toward this issue of what citizenship means and how people have access to services they need, not just services, but also more generally what citizenship is and participation and all the other issues that we talked about today.
I think, you know, this initiative of allowing other people to access the country is just a start, and we're going to see more of that and really start to look at these problems from a higher level and how countries can really it doesn't really matter where you live anymore, I think, in many ways, and I really think Estonia, as the other speaker mentioned, is really at the forefront of this and they have a really good opportunity to lead the charge here.
>> BIRGY LORENZ: Big question. If we define citizenship, not necessarily by boarder territory sovereign nations, if we define it as inclusion, participation, access, fulfillment across a lifetime, then we should be measuring our success by how the most disadvantaged members of that society, wherever it may be, manages. And until we measure our success by the most disadvantaged, we are going to go nowhere very fast. Thank you.
So, thank you, and we also have a rapporteur here, so I will give you the floor and wrap it up.
>> So, thank you very much, everyone, for your intervention and also, I would like to thank the audience for the questions that you addressed.
As I as every one of us could realize, we are still Estonians are especially, are still very proud of the model that they implemented in their country, and I still believe that this is the best practice to be adopted by other countries of the world.
I would start this part of our session with one point that Sandra mentioned, that it is not about to copy and paste some kind of system. It's not about to unify about how the digital citizenship works, but it's about making different systems interoperable between each other, so this is the main point.
Then we discussed about what is it about digital citizenship? Does it mean to have digital identity or digital e residency? Does it make us a digital citizen? Then we should get back to summary definition of digital residency itself and digital citizenship also, but this can be discussed maybe in (?) or any other kind of assembly.
Then about digital inclusion, so as it was mentioned, if digital inclusion can be defined as participation and accessibility, so how to include people which are marginalized?
And then another question to be addressed is how to raise the voice of people, how to make people more e participants, let's say, or how to increase e participation.
And one last point, I stole your words, Alex, is that if we are going to have more and more digital e residents, such as you mentioned, (?) I think and (?) as well, they are kind of trying to implement the same project as Estonia, so how can we regulate competition?
This is another issue that can maybe be discussed in the future EuroDIG or in any other kind of meetings, so I hope that every one of us will be very responsible citizen and a very responsible digital citizen. Okay. Thank you very much, and I encourage you to apply for the e residency of Estonia. (Laughing).
>> BIRGY LORENZ: So, thank you, Ariana, and thank you panelists and thank you the remote moderator, organizing team, our group behind there who is making all the magic for us. Thank you all for coming, and that's it.
And also, as this workshop has been held by Estonia Foundation, we thank you also. Thank you.
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