Digital economy: the path towards innovation and sustainable development
23 SeptemberSep 2020 11:00 - 12:00
A strong digital economy is seen as a key enabler of sustainable development. But what does a strong digital economy mean, especially for SEE+ countries? What are the strengths and weaknesses of the digital economy landscape across the region? The session will look at how traditional business models are adapting to the digital world, especially in times of crisis, when ‘business as usual’ is no longer an option for many entrepreneurs. It will also discuss the status of the digital entrepreneurship and startup ecosystem, by mapping good practices in the region in terms of public policies, funding (public and private initiatives), the capacity to innovate, and expertise and talent retention. Taking the debate one step forward, the question of how to ensure that SEE+ is a player in the global digital market will be addressed.
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Erik Barna | Founder & CEO, Life is Hard (contributor)
Erik Barna is a Romanian entrepreneur, founder, chairman and CEO of LIFE IS HARD | Work Soft - the first national software company listed at the Bucharest Stock Exchange market. He serves on the boards of NOAH WATCHES, Barandi Solutions, and a number of non-profit organizations, such as Cluj IT Cluster (the most relevant IT cluster from Transylvania), FinTech Guardian or Parinti din Romania. Erik has more than 18 years of experience in software development - of which 15 as an IT & tech leader- and is responsible for the LIFE IS HARD (LIH) global strategy, with focus on generating new business & partnerships and building revenue streams for a wide range of products & services. Really passionate about his work, Erik is also a coach and mentor, actively taking part in industry events all across Romania and Europe. Together with his team of experts, Erik has developed several products dedicated to the Romanian business environment and insurance industry. His solutions led to developing Smart City platforms, apps which are already implemented in 30 cities from Romania but also in Brazil and South Africa. The company Erik successfully runs is developing 24Broker.ro, the main platform in Romania for insurance brokers. With more than 120 digital products, throughout 24Broker.ro platform are issued over 33% of the annual premiums of Romanian market. Last but not least, the products he designed for the transport industry and medical system received a lot of appreciation for their innovation and impact on business efficiency. Erik’s tenure has always been marked by multiple international awards, proving the team’s ability to build game-changing IT solutions for LIH clients, and defining him as a strong supporter of Romanian business leaders.
Jana Mišić | PhD candidate, Rathenau Instituut (co-moderator)
Jana Mišić is a Marie-Curie PhD candidate in Ethics and Technology. Her research focuses on the governance and policy impact of digital technology on societal and ethical norms and values. She is based at the Rathenau Institute in The Hague and at the Twente University (The Netherlands). She is an alumna of the ICANN NextGen programme, the European Summer School on Internet Governance and YouthDIG. After an internship with the Executive Committee of the South Eastern European Dialogue on Internet Governance (SEEDIG), Jana remained involved in the region. She is a volunteer member of the organising teams of YouthDIG and EuroDIG.
Pranvera Kastrati | Senior Expert on Economic and Digital Connectivity, Regional Cooperation Council (contributor)
Pranvera Kastrati, PhD, is Senior Expert on Economic and Digital Connectivity in Regional Cooperation Council. Before joining RCC, she had a vast experience in public policy coordination and implementation in Albania. She held a senior position in the Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship and contributed to several reforms to improve the business environment from 1996-2017. She joined Regional Cooperation Council in November 2017 and her core focus of expertise relates to the work pertaining to coordination, monitoring and reporting for the implementation of the Multiannual Action Plan for a Regional Economic Area (MAP REA), contributing also in towards the management and overall implementation of MAP REA in the areas of RCC responsibility. In the area of digital integration her core responsibilities relate to design, implementation, coordination and monitoring of RCC’s interventions, as well as overseeing of the implementation of the operational and implementation plans for the Digital Agenda for Western Balkans.
Slobodan Marković | Technical Advisor for Digital Governance, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Serbia (co-moderator)
Slobodan Marković works as Technical Advisor for Digital Governance in the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Serbia. For 20 years, he has been actively involved in advocating and formulating ICT policies in Serbia. Before engagement in UNDP, he worked in the Serbian National Internet Domains Registry (RNIDS) as Advisor for ICT Policy and Internet Community Relations. Between 2014 and 2017, he was a member of the Multistakeholder Advisory Group (MAG), which advises the UN Secretary-General on the Internet Governance Forum (IGF). In the period from 2008 to 2012, he worked in the Serbian Ministry of Telecommunications and Information Society, where he advised the Minister on telecommunications liberalization, e-government, and e-business policies. In 2010, he received the "e-Commerce AWARD" for a decade-long contribution to the development of e-business in Serbia.
Vitalie Tarlev | State Secretary for Information Technology and Communications, Ministry of Economy and Infrastructure of the Republic of Moldova (contributor)
Mr. Vitalie Tarlev is acting as a State Secretary for Information Technology and Communications at the Ministry of Economy and Infrastructure of the Republic of Moldova since November 2017. Previously he served as a Deputy Minister of Information Technology and Communications (2013–2017) and as a Director for the European Integration and International Cooperation within the Ministry of IT&C (since 2005). Mr. Tarlev has been involved in numerous high profiled ICT national and international initiatives, his duties and responsibilities being focused on Information Society policy and legal framework development, as well as on the implementation of the related to this projects: eMoldova2010 Strategy; Digital Moldova 2020 Strategy; IT Industry Competitiveness Roadmap 2015-2017; IT Industry and Digital Innovation ecosystem Strategy 2018-2023; Law on IT parks and creation of Moldova IT Park; IT Visa Law; creation of the ICT Excellence Center TEKWILL and promotion of the Tekwill national network; Digital Education Project for Primary Schools; creation of the 112 Service for emergency communications; Digital signature and Electronic Document Law, Cyber Security National Program, National cybersec standard - Minimal Cybersecurity Requirements; Implementation of the Digital Terrestrial TV broadcasting; development of the Efficient Radio Frequencies Management policy framework, creation of the Tech Startups and Digital Innovation Fund, etc. Spoken languages: Romanian, English and Russian.
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