Magazine article The Times Higher Education Supplement : THE

From Where I Sit - No Time to Lose on Korea Moves

Magazine article The Times Higher Education Supplement : THE

From Where I Sit - No Time to Lose on Korea Moves

Article excerpt

When it comes to higher education in the Republic of Korea, most of us would find it hard to answer key questions. What do you think about their university research priorities? Who would you partner with on an international exchange programme? OK, maybe an easier one. How many universities in South Korea can you name? There are four in the top 200 of the Times Higher Education World University Rankings, so you might start there. Three are in the top 100: ahead of Stockholm University, Trinity College Dublin, the University of Leeds and Texas A&M University.

Pohang University of Science and Technology (Postech) is 50th, Seoul National University is 59th and the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (Kaist) is 68th. Yonsei University, at 183rd, is ahead of the universities of Leicester, Twente and Miami.

We have been talking about the Asian tiger economies for 30 years. Since then, South Korea's research publication output has passed that of Russia and is about the same as India's (around 40,000 papers a year).

In September, I spent some time visiting Korean universities, research institutes and research hospitals, and came away with a sense of having previously known far too little about them. Although the statistics are impressive, most of us have little sense of what they mean on the ground.

As I witnessed, they mean extensive campuses with excellent new buildings and great facilities. Seoul National University would sit nicely alongside any of Europe's established civic universities. More than half of its budget comes from research grants, contracts and donations. It has more than 25,000 students (10 per cent of them international and 40 per cent of them postgraduates) and more than 2,000 academic staff in 16 discipline- based colleges on its Seoul campus. Rather than a busy urban setting, it is spread across a huge parkland campus with shuttle buses to move staff and students around. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.