Estonia, called “the only post-Soviet Scandinavian country” is, because of its small size – less than 1.4 million inhabitants – a perfect place for comparative and in-depth studies in the social sciences - also during times of crisis. “Medieval and wired", as another slogan goes, traditional and innovative at the same time – Estonia’s ICT infrastructure is one of the most developed in the world – it is easy to reach by car, ferry, and by air, with frequent connections to many European airports.
Tallinn, perhaps the best-preserved Hanseatic town of all (a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site), a harbor, sailing, and beach capital – the site of the 1980 Summer Olympics in water-sports –, is as dynamic and exciting as a city of half a million can be. Newsweek called Tallinn one of the top “funky towns” of the world. It is also the regional cultural capital, with many excellent concerts, art and design exhibitions, and theater productions. The crisis has slowed down the construction boom, but not the vibrancy and attractiveness of the city.
Tallinn University of Technology (TTÜ) is one of the leading technical universities, and one of the best, most patent-producing schools in the region; it closely works with its Finnish counterparts. TUT – one of the schools fondly called “the MIT of the North” – gives this program a serious and solid base. A fully accredited State university, founded in 1918, it has a large, diverse, and integrated student body and many student facilities, as well as modern student housing.
Ragnar Nurkse School of Innovation and Governance is the multi-disciplinary department granting the degree. As the TG MA is based in Public Administration and not in Economics, it can proceed unstraddled by the typical mainstream economic skepticism towards technology, growth, and innovation. The department’s site is in the West of Tallinn, separated from the nearby Sea by coastal woods, in a brand-new custom-made building on the main TUT campus and right next to Skype’s R&D division.