A Digital Divide: Actions Towards 2030 Agenda

22:00 - 23:00 EST
Dubai, UAE

World Government Summit 2023 will be held under the theme of “Shaping Future Governments”. The Summit will bring thought leaders, global experts, and decision makers from around the globe to share and contribute to the development of tools, policies, and models that are essential in shaping future governments.

Digital connectivity and strong digital public infrastructure have increased countries’ resilience to shocks and crises – including for the COVID-19 response and recovery. The integration of digital in economies and societies has the potential to accelerate progress towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. From service delivery to finance, human centric digital transformations are key to building more inclusive, effective, and transparent solutions across sectors. Demand for support from governments is surging. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been requests from more than 100 countries on digital solutions and platforms to the UN.

To address digital challenges and harness possibilities, the UN Secretary-General launched the Roadmap for Digital Cooperation. Building on the action areas identified in Roadmap for Digital Cooperation, the Joint SDG Fund is launching a Digital Transformation Window to provide catalytic investments that support digital transformation.


Her Excellency Ohood Khalfan Al Roumi

Minister Of State For Government Development And The Future

Her Excellency Ohood Khalfan Al Roumi is the Minister of State for Government Development and the Future in the United Arab Emirates. This ministerial portfolio was created in the UAE government for the purpose of advancing government development and for the preparation for the future planning of the government of the United Arab Emirates.

Her Excellency Ohood is also the Chairwoman of the Federal Authority for Government Human Recourses (FAHR), the federal entity responsible for the growth and development of UAE federal government human resources. Her Excellency is Vice Chair of World Government Summit Organization. She is also member of the Emirates Competitiveness Council, a board member of the 'Frontline Heroes Office', and member of the board of trustees of the Museum of the Future.

Her Excellency also oversees the Prime Minister’s Office of UAE and multiple strategic programs and initiatives that comes beneath it, such as the development of the UAE Centennial 2071, the coordination and follow up on executing UAE Vision 2021. Her Excellency also overlooks UAE government strategy and innovation, government development programs as well as Sheikh Khalifa Government Excellence Program, Government Performance Management System “Ada’a”, Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre For Government Innovation and the UAE Government Leaders Program.


In 2016, H.E. Al Roumi held the position of Minister of State for Happiness and Wellbeing, the first ministerial position of its kind in the world introduced by the UAE government. The United Nations Foundation appointed H.E. Al Roumi as member of the UN’s Global Entrepreneurship Council (GEC) in 2015, making her the first Arab member to hold that position.  She also made the Young Global Leaders (YGL) list with World Economic Forum (WEF) in 2012. H.E. was also listed among the World’s Greatest Leaders in 2017 by Fortune magazine in recognition of her accomplishments, making her the only Arab figure in the list.

Prior to her role at the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs, H.E. Al Roumi held several leadership positions within the UAE federal government and the Government of Dubai. She was the Director of Economic Policy at the Executive Office of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President Prime Minister of UAE Ruler of Dubai, where she led several teams to develop multiple government-driven strategies, such as the Economic Sector Task Force for the Dubai Government's as well as the Federal Government strategy. She also was Director of Business Research at the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry. H.E. Al Roumi holds an Executive Master’s Degree in Business Administration (EMBA) from the University of Sharjah and a Bachelor’s in Economics from the College of Business and Economics, United Arab Emirates University. She is also a graduate from Mohammed Bin Rashid Program for Leadership Development.


Li Junhua

Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA)

Mr. Li Junhua of China as the Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs effective 25 July 2022.

Prior to his appointment, Mr. Li was Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of China to Italy and San Marino.  He brings to the position perspectives and visions on fostering multilateral economic and social cooperation, with a commitment to engage with all parties to further implement the 2030 Agenda including dedication to serve Member States. He has contributed to numerous meetings of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council, as well as other multilateral meetings including the G20, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), Asia–Europe Meeting (ASEM), BRICS etc.

As Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Mr. Li guides UN Secretariat support for the follow-up processes of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development. He also oversees the substantive services to many intergovernmental processes, including the annual meetings of the Second and Third Committees of the General Assembly, the meetings of the Economic and Social Council, including its Development Cooperation Forum, and the work of the subsidiary bodies of ECOSOC. In addition to intergovernmental processes, Mr. Li oversees DESA’s policy analysis and capacity development work. He also serves as the Convenor of the Executive Committee on Economic and Social Affairs, and advises the United Nations Secretary-General on all development-related issues, including climate change, internet governance, and financing for development.

H.E. Kersti Kaljulaid

5th President to the Republic of Estonia

Kersti Kaljulaid was the first female President of Estonia, having been elected into office in 2016. Kersti Kaljulaid was born in 1969 in Tartu and graduated from the University of Tartu in 1992 in the field of genetics in the Faculty of Natural Sciences. Former President Kaljulaid completed her master's studies in the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration in 2001. 

From 1994 to 1999, she worked in various Estonian companies: first, as the sales manager of telephone switchboards in Eesti Telefon, later in Hoiupank Markets and Hansapank Markets as an associate in investment banking. From 1999 to 2002, Kersti Kaljulaid was Prime Minister Mart Laar's Economic Advisor. Her duties included the organisation of cooperation of the Office of the Prime Minister with the Estonian central bank, as well as with the Ministry of Finance and other Ministries with larger budgets, as well as the coordination of relations with the International Monetary Fund and other financial institutions (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Nordic Investment Bank and World Bank). She participated in preparing the pension reform together with the Minister of Finance and the Minister of Social Affairs and advised the Prime Minister in annual budget negotiations held with other ministers.

From 2002 to 2004, Kersti Kaljulaid was the CFO and CEO of the Iru Power Plant of state-owned energy company Eesti Energia. 

From 2004 to 2016 she was a Member of the European Court of Auditors. From 2004 to 2006 Kersti Kaljulaid organised the financial audit of the research and development funds of the budget of the European Union and from 2007 to 2010 she was responsible for the audit of the Structural Policies. From 2004 to 2007, she was the auditor of the Galileo project of the European Union.

From 2010 to 2016 she coordinated the preparation of the Annual Report and State of Assurance of the European Court of Auditors. From 2005 to 2007, she was a member of the Europol Audit Committee and chaired the committee in 2007. From 2006 to 2008, she was the chair of the Administrative Affairs Committee of the Court of Auditors. From 2010 to 2014, she was responsible for the methodology and preparation of the Annual Report of the Court of Auditors. In 2016, she worked in the field of the agriculture audit.

Jon Clifton

CEO of Gallup

Mr. Clifton's mission is to help organizations create thriving workplaces; put 1 billion people in touch with their strengths; and help 8 billion citizens be heard on their most pressing issues through the Gallup World Poll, a 100-year initiative spanning over 150 countries. Clifton has been with Gallup since 2008. He previously served as Global Managing Partner of the company's worldwide consulting group -- advising global leaders on how their organizations and countries can thrive using behavioral economics and analytics-based insights.

Clifton's 2022 book, Blind Spot: The Global Rise of Unhappiness and How Leaders Missed It, is a Wall Street Journal bestseller. Clifton serves on the boards of directors for Gallup and Young Professionals in Foreign Policy. He has also served on the boards of Meridian International, Streetwise Partners and the International Business Advisory Board at the University of Nebraska.

Clifton received a bachelor's degree in political science and history from the University of Michigan and a Juris Doctor in international law from the University of Nebraska. He is nonresident senior fellow at Baylor University's Institute for Studies of Religion and was awarded an honorary doctorate in humane letters from Midland University.

Raja Al Mazrouei

Acting CEO, Etihad Credit Insurance

A multi-award-winning digital transformation leader with over 20 years of experience accentuating the next-gen wave of digital innovation. Specializing heavily on the intricacies of the financial and technology sectors, Raja holds a strong history involving cross-functional leadership, finance, and all things progressive - collectively steered by her passion for pioneering large-scale industry and UAE community reform. Furthermore, she is heavily acclaimed for instilling innovative advancements here in the present, as well as positioning stakeholders for sustainable success as they navigate deeper into the ever-transient, digital future.

A renowned technical visionary, Raja has worked at several organizations as a senior executive, with the most recent being the former EVP of DIFC FinTech Hive. Here, Raja proactively networked with financial institutions, government entities, technology partners, Venture Capital/Funds, and entrepreneurs to spearhead the UAE’s national innovation agenda. In addition, Raja’s technical/financial acumen led to FinTech becoming a leading contributor to the UAE digital economy, the formation of 500+ FinTech, RegTech, and InsurTech startups that opened new doors for societal opportunities, and FinTech ranking as one of the world's best financial innovation labs under Global Finance Magazine.

From building winning mindsets, implementing scaling accelerations to diversely improving life quality via cutting-edge integrations, Raja enjoys leveraging larger-picture technology to secure viable outcomes across the board. This, in conjunction with her history of harvesting new 'status quo challenged' opportunities, and reputation for positioning UAE as an innovation destination, is what shaped Raja into an internationally recognized digital change agent – one who values people and process bridging and addresses every project with an ambition to create solutions that solidity mutually beneficial outcomes.