The University of Tartu offers an innovative online summer course for students from around the world. This course will be conducted in “digital classroom” and will provide to the registered students an academic experience which is comparable to professor-student interaction in the physical classroom. Group-work and assignments are integral part of this course.
This course focuses on the positive economic and social developments which have made Estonia one of the most successful countries of Eastern Europe after the fall of the socialist regime. Students will gain an overview of the choices which Estonia had to make during the transition from controlled to free-market economy, on the role of various factors within this process and the impact of these choices upon the business climate and the society at large. The course also provides insights on the international position and foreign policies of the countries of the Baltic Sea region.
Classes will be taught by the professors of the University of Tartu and other highly acclaimed professors from specific focus areas.
Course dates: 03–19 August
The first week of the course is individual study with the provided materials, preparation for online lectures and group-work. Students are expected to have accomplished all individual assignment by the opening of the online classroom.
Online classroom dates: 10–19 August (14.30 – 18.00 GMT + 3)
The course will commence with individual work assigned by the professors – reading articles, policy documents and commentaries. Students are expected to start the program by having acquainted themselves with the respective information. Registered student will receive access to Moodle on 03 August, which gives access to materials and assignments.
The online classroom is created into ZOOM application and is conducted in real time by the professors responsible for the course. The online teaching will include both lectures and interactive seminars. Group work sessions will be organized during the online classroom sessions.Assessment: The program assessment is on pass/fail basis. For passing the course, the student must: i) study the materials and prepare assignments during one week before the commencement of virtual lectures; ii) attend and actively participate in the online academic work; iii) accomplish all assignments given for individual work and during the online lectures. Each lecturer will assess performance of each student. For passing the course, the student needs to receive passing assessment from each lecturer.
The course has the following options for credits:
The social program is integral part of the academic programme. There will be a general quiz about the social program at the end of the course, assessed by Program Director.
The online classroom will open each day 30 minutes prior to the start of the course with social chatroom. The chatroom will also be open 30 minutes after the end of the course. The program will provide to the participants suggestions to access various social and cultural events related to the focus of this program. Opportunities to access Estonian cultural life “virtually” will be advanced.
The participants will be provided two highlight recommendations for each day – one for Estonian movie classics, documentaries, and another for interactive links to Estonian visual arts, culture and history.
Applications are evaluated based on
Motivation letter (up to 1.5 page) that demonstrates the applicant’s motivation to participate, explains his/her expectations about the programme and how participation in the summer programme is connected with his/her studies and interests, and how the applicant plans to use the gained experience and knowledge in the future.
Credits: 4 ECTS or 6 ECTS
Programme fee: 690 € for 4 ECTS option and 890 € for the 6 ECTS option.
Programme fee: 690 € for 4 ECTS option and 890 € for the 6 ECTS option
Lecturer: program director Mari-Ann Susi
This introductory lecture will welcome the students into the online course and outline the academic program – the lectures and professors, and the social program. It will introduce the University of Tartu as the highest ranked research university in the Baltic countries and will briefly recapitulate the main aspects of Estonian history, political system and the society. The lecture then continues to present Estonia as the most advanced digital society in the world. It will discuss the social and political reasons behind Estonia’s “digital success”, the main features of the e-governance and blockchain technology, and illustrate what living in a digital society means for an average Estonian.
TUESDAY & WEDNESDAY, 11-12.08
NATO, the EU and Baltic Regional Security module
Lecturer: professor Andres Kasekamp, University of Toronto
This module focuses on the post-communist period, but also provides an introduction to the recent history of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to give a better understanding about the foreign policy activities of the Baltic States today. The module studies the environment of Baltic regional security, considering the main external and internal factors. The module is based on three broader issues in the foreign policies of the Baltic States: Euro-Atlantic integration, regional co-operation and relations with Russia. During the week students will analyse issues such as EU and NATO enlargement, international cooperation within the Baltic Sea region, and Baltic-Russian relations.
Among the specific topics that will be discussed are: NATO’s transformation since the Cold War, European Union enlargement and NATO expansion in Eastern Europe, the EU’s Eastern Partnership and Neighbourhood Policy, the impact of the events in Ukraine, cyber defence, energy security, Baltic Sea regional cooperation, memory conflicts, espionage, information warfare, the situation of the Russian-speaking minorities, Transatlantic relations, the ‘reset’ in the relationship with Russia and its demise.
“Innovative organizational culture and what we know about it in Estonian companies”
Lecturer: professor Krista Jaakson, University of Tartu
In the first part, we exchange ideas about what is organizational culture in the first place and why it should matter for innovation. By looking at the factors affecting organizational culture we learn to predict its innovativeness. Examples of Estonian companies illustrate the theory. In the second part, we dive deeper into habits and practices that innovative organizations have adopted and share participants’ own experience with different companies.
NATO, the EU and Baltic Regional Security module by professor Kasekamp continues
“Business, digital society and human rights”
Lecturer: professor Mart Susi, Tallinn University
The lecture will start by outlining some key concepts related to corporate social responsibility for safeguarding fundamental rights in business operations. It will explore how the Baltic and Nordic countries meet the respective international standards. The lecture will thereafter move to analyse the challenges originating from digitalization to fundamental rights protection. What are the horizontal and vertical governance models, is it justified to call the large international online companies “new governors”, are the concepts and remedies for human rights protection as we know them from offline world also applicable in online environment?
“Business and Innovation”
Lecturer: associate professor Viktor Trasberg
The lecture continues the topic on global competitiveness and particularly focuses on innovation and development. Advancement and efficiency of economies depends mainly on capabilities to modernize and innovate. Why Baltic Sea Region countries are in the top of various innovation rankings? Why some societies are more innovative than others? How innovation systems work? Is IT sector that only matters? Those questions will be discussed and explained in the frames of Baltic Sea Region economic developments.
“Challenges related to e-elections”
Lecturer: professor Mihkel Solvak, University of Tartu
Estonia was the first country in the world to introduce unlimited remote internet voting in 2005. Nowadays close to 50% of all votes in Estonian elections are given over the internet with the casting of a vote by a typical citizen taking 90 seconds on average. The lecture demonstrates now does such a remote voting system works, who are the typical users and how did the technology diffuse among the voting population. This will be done with showing empirical material on usage patterns over a span of 15 years of internet voting in Estonia. The second part of the lecture will focus on the universal problems with e-enabled elections such as vote secrecy and integrity, resistance to voter coercion, trust in the technology and potential effect of the technology on the election outcome.
“Organizational aspects of digital transformation”
Lecturer: PhD candidate Virgo Süsi, University of Tartu
Digital transformation is happening at a tremendous speed and scale in society at large and in businesses. So, also organizations need to transform in order to cope with the new reality. The lecture discusses the digital transformation of businesses from organizational perspective. How does the digitalization impact business organizations and their strategic outlook? What needs to be done within organizations in order the digital transformation to be successful?
“Researching Financial Networks”
Lecturer: research fellow Mustafa Hakan Eratalay, University of Tartu
This lecture starts with a general motivation on what networks are and how important and predominant it is in everyday life as well as in financial sector. After defining some key concepts on research with networks, the lecture continues with many interesting examples of how the networks are studied in finance: from stock market networks to banking networks. Finally, the lecture relates the financial networks to systemic risk, which became a very hot topic after the 2007-2008 financial crisis. The transmission and diffusion of financial risk from one institute to another and finally to the whole financial system is what motivates a network approach in modelling systemic risk. Questions such as which institutes are too big or too central to create such a cascading effect and threaten the financial system are key to the research in financial networks.
The University of Tartu has the right to make reasonable changes into this program not affecting its content of goals.