20 years of technological change and transformation


A review of technological change in the past 20 years, applications and narratives, sweet birthday wishes. We have it all in this week’s episode of the Digital Government Podcast, where we head to distinguished technology experts of e-Governance Academy (eGA) for another expert chat dedicated to eGA’s 20 years anniversary.

Programme Director Heiko Vainsalu meets Mark Erlich, Senior Expert on eID. From popularizing tech talk in government and society, to novelties and black boxes to unpack, the two experts take us through two decades of digital transformation. To see what’s changed in digital development worldwide and, always clearly put, what’s not. Coming up next?

20 years of technological change and transformation

For how surprising it may seem to the least aware, technologists as well have a life beyond development projects and digital solutions. “20 years ago I was completing my university studies, I wasn’t that aware of e-governance. To me, it meant public services for taxes and banking, simply because those were my two point of contacts with the topic back then,” Erlich admits.

And while we heard from eGA cyber and e-democracy experts in previous episodes what these two decades of change entailed, what about the technology domain?

“The core is pretty much the same as 20 years ago. What happened is a crucial shift from niche to popularity. From niche products used just in some specific business areas, to technology getting out to the public. It was something only true techies knew about, people in general didn’t know about cryptography or anything else like that,” Erlich says. 

“Moving away from the core, a lot has happened in terms of technological application. We see many new technical solutions around us that are part of our daily life. All kinds of smart gadgets, from smartphones to household appliances. That has evolved indeed, and we are benefitting from such development not just from the development side, but also simply as common people.”


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