Meet the leader who's committed to transforming the European tech ecosystem

Mark Boris Andrijanič is a Slovenian civil society leader and politician committed to transforming the European tech ecosystem and one of the Forum's young global leaders.

Mark Boris Andrijanič is a Slovenian civil society leader and politician committed to transforming the European tech ecosystem and one of the Forum's young global leaders. Image: Mark Boris Andrijanič

Lukas Bester
Writer, Forum Agenda
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The Digital Economy

  • Mark Boris Andrijanič is a Slovenian civil society leader and politician committed to transforming the European tech ecosystem.
  • During Andrijanič’s term as Slovenia’s first-ever Minister of Digital Transformation, the country climbed three places on the European Digital Index (DESI).
  • He recently received the Ukraine Peace Prize from President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for his efforts to strengthen Ukraine’s digital resilience.

Mark Boris Andrijanič is a proudly Slovenian civil society leader with a passion for technology and belief in the power of human-centric digital transformation. His career has taken him from his hometown of Ljubljana, Slovenia, to Oxford, Washington D.C., Brussels, Warsaw and Sierra Leone.

In Slovenia, he co-founded and led several youth NGOs and initiatives to promote active citizenship and entrepreneurship, including the Network of Ideas Association (Združenje Mreža idej). After a successful career at Uber as the head of public policy in Central and Eastern Europe, he served as Slovenia’s first-ever minister of digital transformation to lead the modernisation of public services and coordinate the EU's digital policies. Today, he is helping European tech champions grow and serves on the governing board of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.


What motivated you to take on the position of minister of digital transformation?

There is no greater privilege than to serve your country. When the government invited me to lead Slovenia's digital transformation, I was overwhelmed with feelings of excitement, responsibility, and even fear. Leaving a stable and rewarding job in the tech sector to enter the rather brutal world of politics was hardly a breeze, but it was the right thing to do.

Fortunately, I wasn’t alone. I assembled a group of leading experts and a young and talented team to help me design and implement the country’s new digital strategy. As a result, according to the European Commission’s Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI), Slovenia climbed three places, surpassing both Germany and France in its digital development.


What is a YGL?

What are the projects you are most proud of?

Since bridging the digital divide was my key priority, I am incredibly proud of the adoption of the Digital Inclusion Act, which represents one of the first comprehensive pieces of legislation of its kind in Europe. It codifies a systemic approach to digital inclusion and paves the way to the largest e-skilling programme in my country’s history.

Likewise, I am proud of the successes that my colleagues and I achieved during Slovenia’s EU presidency in 2021. We reached agreements among the member states on the Digital Services Act and Digital Markets Act that represent the foundations of Europe’s tech regulations. I am also proud of my efforts to strengthen Ukraine’s digital resilience, for which I recently received the Ukraine Peace Prize from President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

How well has Europe adapted to the digitized world?

The good news is that Europe has been a leader in forward-looking tech regulations. However, we have lagged behind the US and China in digital innovation, and today, you will find very few European companies among the world’s biggest tech firms.

There is no doubt that we need comprehensive tech regulation to ensure fair competition and safeguard our core values. However, it is also imperative that we create and foster an environment that will cultivate the digital champions of the future. I am working closely with European policymakers, experts, and entrepreneurs to make this vision a reality.

As one of the Forum's young global leaders, how has the community impacted your work?

I couldn’t be more grateful for being part of such an inspiring and vibrant community. I have already connected with several of the Forum's Young Global Leaders who share my passion for digital transformation. We are working together on exciting business ventures and policy-related projects, including a major conference on global AI governance, which will take place next year.

Learn more about the Forum of Young Global Leaders here.

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