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[Futures Brief] Assessment of Future Impact of Science and Technology: European Parliament 2021 Report “Our Response to Unprecedented Issues” (No. 5)
Dr. Park Seong-won (Research Fellow) has confirmed that the economic and social impact was concentrated on the socially disadvantaged and vulnerable groups such as women, youth, and low-skilled workers during the two years after the COVID-19 crisis worldwide. The brief is based on a report containing a parliamentary evaluation for science and technology to respond to COVID-19 by the European Parliament Technology Assessment Network (EPTA). NAFI participates in the EPTA as an associate member. For rapidly addressing social and economic impacts of COVID-19 on the vulnerable groups, parliaments of each country have urged scientific and technological efforts such as provision of COVID-19 response information using advanced IT and the development of vaccines and therapeutics, and also jointly made efforts to respond to the crisis by establishing committees and social channels in which the government, experts, and citizens participate together. In 2021 report, EPTA evaluated that they were impressed by Korea’s efforts to track confirmed cases using advanced IT, to share data such as medical resources, and to gather experts and citizens for discussion on future prospects and countermeasures via the National Assembly.
[National Future Strategic Insight] “Future Vision 2037: Transition from Growth-Oriented to Matured Society” (No. 36)
This report points out that Korea has displayed unprecedented rapid economic growth, but on the other hand, individuals and societies suffer from inequality, polarization, antagonism and confrontation, thereby envisioning “Transition from Growth-Oriented to Matured Society”, emphasizing the need for transition to a society where individuals and communities are not sacrificed for the national development goal but design the future together as equal subjects, and value quality rather than quantitative expansion. The researchers present “autonomy and decentralization”, “diversity”, “priority to the socially vulnerable” as values we have to direct towards, with 12 specific mid- to long-term agendas under four goals “individual capacity and quality of life”, “harmonized community”, “paradigm shift and sustainable growth” and “mediation and cooperation against domestic/international conflicts”. The report is intended to focus on mid- to long-term agendas that three governments should continue to push forward, considering that a new government will be launched in 2022. By analyzing the issues of consensus, potential conflict, and fierce confrontation by each agenda from various perspectives, the report presents a topic for expanding social conversation in the future. This report has been prepared to display the key points of “Future Vision 2037: Transition from Growth-Oriented to Matured Society” of the National Mid-to-Long-Term Agenda Committee (“Committee”), which is an advisory body under the Speaker of the National Assembly established at the end of November 2020 to discover national tasks and future issues required to be continuously discussed beyond the five-year term of the administration. Future Vision 2037 Report is the outcome of Committee-supported research conducted over the past year by forming a joint research team led by NAFI, other government-funded research institutes under the jurisdiction of the National Research Council for Economics, Humanities and Social Sciences (NRC) and the National Research Council of Science & Technology (NST), and 60 experts from major universities. “As this report contains national agendas requiring continuous discussion beyond the five-year term of the administration, we plan to use various tools to promote the research results so that the politicians and the public can continue to take interest,” explains Research Fellow Kim Yu-bean of NAFI.
[National Future Strategic Insight] Policies to Support Industries Affected by Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) and Policy Effect Analysis (No. 35)
Performing a survey for 25 experts by Jeong Hoon (Research Fellow) and Yeo Yeong-jun (Associate Research Fellow), respondents answered that “pro forma opinion gathering” and “hasty and exclusive legislative process” are the biggest obstacles of domestic climate policy and legislation. They confirmed that by enhancing policies and legislation, the regulatory restructuring, promotion of domestic industry conversion and export industry support should be integrated. Further, the CBAM-oriented supports should encompass support, protection, promotion and conversion as strategic directions, including tax benefits, funding support, R&D support, distribution/commercialization, infrastructure, customized support for each industry, reasonable transaction framework, innovative system, policy governance, education and publicity. The priority of the proposed industrial support policy tasks was analyzed based on urgency and effectiveness with analytic hierarchy process (AHP), which was given to R&D support, tax benefits, funding support, customized support for each industry, innovative system, distribution/commercialization, infrastructure, policy governance, reasonable transaction framework, and education and publicity in this order. Additionally, the researchers proved the importance and effectiveness of the industrial support policy by analyzing the socioeconomic ripple effect using the computable general equilibrium (CGE) model for “R&D support” with the highest priority, and also confirmed that major macroeconomic indicators such as GDP, social utility, and investment, which had fallen due to the CBAM, recovered somewhat with R&D support, thereby resolving the growth slowdown, as well as indirect effect of promoting carbon neutrality of the power generation sector. “As it was quantitatively confirmed that the implementation of the industrial support policy had positive economic and social effects, we could confirm the need of preparing a systematic industrial support policy for carbon neutrality as well as responding to the CBAM,” explains Dr. Jeong Hoon. “In the policy design, it is necessary to come up with an integrated support plan and improve the system thereby ensuring introduction of regulations that meet the needs of the international community and customized protection and support policies taking into account the structural characteristics of the domestic industry.”
(21-01) The Analysis of Emerging Issues
In the field of futures studies, signs and signals of the future are called emerging issues. Emerging issues are issues that would bring huge changes to society in the future, although insufficient data regarding emerging issues have appeared at present. In order to identify emerging issues in advance and prepare for them, major futures research institutes around the world put a lot of effort into emerging issue analysis under various names such as weak signals, wild cards, and early warnings. The National Assembly Futures Institute collaborated with Professor Min Song's research team at the Department of Library and Information Sciences, Yonsei University to collect 1.5 million academic literature items and applied its own computer algorithms and machine learning to derive emerging keywords. Emerging keywords are ones that are receiving new attention from experts and are expected to be mentioned more frequently in the future. About 100 domestic experts were provided with emerging keywords and asked to pick out emerging issues using the keywords, and about 70 emerging issues were identified. Researchers at the National Assembly Futures Institute rearranged these into 36 emerging issues and sent them back to 42 experts to evaluate them based on their potentiality and social impact. For example, The escalating conflict between the United States and its global allies and China, new space appeared in response to climate crisis, radical energy transition in transportation and logistics, the increase in asocial behavior, and the appearance of the mosaic family have been raised as emerging issues that will have a great impact on society. In addition, emerging issues such as Robot autonomy and social consensus, emphasis on the public nature of land, entering life in space, and eco-fascism, which are relatively unlikely to occur, but that may have ripple effects on society, were also identified. Emerging issues research can be said to be important in terms of promoting and enhancing the capability of citizens to think about and formulate responses to various changes regarding the future by assessing issues that society has not yet determined the nature of – whether they are problems or opportunities.
(21-02) Education Inequality and Social Mobility in Korea
This study investigated the trend of educational inequality in Korea, focusing on the extent to which family and income background and gender affect access to higher education. Chapter 1 briefly addressed the discourse on overall education inequality in Korea as an introduction. Chapter 2 addressed the inequality and gender gap in college entry, analyzing the latest panel data. Through the analysis, it was found that in terms of admissions to four-year and prestigious universities, the gender gap completely disappeared and differences only existed between classes. However, it was newly found that the gender gap between men and women in lower class is growing with respect to admissions to college and four-year universities. Meanwhile, the gap between men and women in the selection of science and engineering majors was not narrowed, but instead was strengthened. Chapter 3 focused on educational inequality and gender gaps in graduate school advancement in Korea using the latest data. In the graduate school entrance analysis, the influence of the socioeconomic class of the student's family on advancement to graduate school was confirmed. The results showed that the socioeconomic class of the student's family had a statistically significant correlation with graduate school advancement in Korea. In addition, it was confirmed that the degree of the correlation between parents' income and education level and graduate school advancement differs by gender. The findings imply that family background is a more important determinant for women going to graduate school than men. Lastly, Chapter 4 provided implications for policy-making based on these findings.
(21-03) Lifelong Learning Experience and Social Mobility of Underprivileged Groups of Labor Market
The rapid changes in the labor market caused by technology advancement are expected to have a great impact on underprivileged workers who are not highly educated or skilled. For this reason, lifelong learning is necessary for those workers to continuously develop their knowledge and skills in order to deal with changes in the future labor market and improve the social mobility of their social class. The purpose of this study was to understand how and why the lifelong learning experiences of the underprivileged in the labor market have had an influence, or not, on their social mobility. This study specifically explored the motivations of the underprivileged to participate in lifelong learning programs, as well as their perceptions of opportunities and access to the programs. This study further explored how the underprivileged perceive the effects of lifelong learning in terms of changes in human, psychological, and social capital, and how those effects contribute to improving their social mobility. To accomplish the purpose, this study conducted five focus group interviews with 19 workers and one-to-one interviews with seven workers from underprivileged groups in the labor market. The results of this study showed that the underprivileged who participated in lifelong learning programs have, to some extent, experienced changes in human, psychological, and social capital, and those changes contributed to entering labor market or promoting their employability. However, the effectiveness of lifelong learning programs on social mobility was shown to vary according to the social contexts in which the workers were placed, the types of learning programs and curricula offered, and the workers’ motivations to learn and overall learning strategies. This study provides implications for lifelong learning policies that are aimed toward underprivileged workers. Various strategies need to be planned and implemented to improve underprivileged workers’ physical and psychological access to lifelong learning in formal and non-formal educational contexts. As positive experiences in lifelong learning can lead to continuous efforts to learn, comprehensive learning supports need to be provided for underprivileged workers, so that they can experience changes in their work and lives as a result of their participation in lifelong learning. Also, policies need to be established and implemented to integrate lifelong learning and career development programs for disadvantaged workers. In addition, certification systems and recognition of prior learning needs to be advanced and sophisticated in a way to be highly reliable and easily utilized in the labor market and formal education system.
NAFI Holds 7th National Assembly Futures Forum, “Diagnosing Korea’s Readiness for the Future with Data”
NAFI Holds 7th National Assembly Futures Forum, “Diagnosing Korea’s Readiness for the Future with Data” -A joint event by National Assembly study groups (National Assembly Digital Innovation and Future Forum, National Assembly Future Policy Research Group)- The National Assembly Futures Institute (NAFI, President Kim Hyeon-kon) has joined forces with National Assembly study groups (National Assembly Digital Innovation and Future Forum, National Assembly Future Policy Research Group) to hold the 7th National Assembly Futures Forum on Diagnosing Korea’s Readiness for the Future with Data at the National Assembly Members’ Office Building on November 24th. This forum is designed to ascertain whether we are fully prepared for uncertainties that face the nation going forward, including population reduction and low growth, the proliferation of technologies leading the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and heightened inequalities in the wake of COVID-19. Importantly, participants will recognize the need for a system to monitor our future readiness and executive faculty while seeking a data-based national strategy to respond to the future amid accelerating digital transformation. The forum will begin with opening remarks by NAFI President Kim Hyeon-kon, followed by congratulatory remarks by National Assembly Speaker Kim Jin-pyo and Lawmakers Yoon Young-chan, Park Dae-soo, Noh Woong-rae, Sung Il-jong, and Park Jin, who are jointly representing the study groups. After the opening ceremony, Min Bo-gyeong, Head of the Quality of Life Group at the National Assembly Futures Institute, will give a presentation on “Are we well prepared for the environmental changes going forward: Assessment of future readiness based on data.” This will lead to a discussion with Professor Kim Dong-wook of Seoul National University Graduate School of Public Administration (moderator); Professor Bae Kwang-bin of Public Administration at Dongguk University; Yoon Joo-cheol, Tax Analyst at the National Assembly Budget Office; Lim Seong-geun, Future Administrative Innovation Research Director at the Korea Institute of Public Administration; Jeong Joon-hwa, Legislative Investigator at the National Assembly Legislative Research Office; and Choi Byung-sam, Research Fellow at the Science and Technology Research Institute. The National Assembly Futures Forum is a venue where those making up the National Assembly, including lawmakers, political parties, and institutions under the National Assembly, along with professionals from various sectors, discuss significant future issues to seek better alternatives together. NAFI President Kim Hyeon-kon stressed: “The 7th National Assembly Futures Forum will provide a meaningful platform for promoting cooperation among the institutions belonging to the National Assembly as well as academic professionals while exploring data-based research and analysis so that we can use data to find a path to becoming future-ready amid the digital transformation.” The 7th National Assembly Futures Forum will be broadcast live on YouTube while being filmed by the National Assembly Television for a recorded relay later.
NAFI Concludes 6th National Assembly Futures Forum: the Future of Youth, Youth of the Future
NAFI Concludes 6th National Assembly Futures Forum: the Future of Youth, Youth of the Future -Seeking alternative youth policies for the future- The National Assembly Futures Institute (NAFI, President Kim Hyeon-kon) wrapped up the 6th National Assembly Futures Forum: the Future of Youth, Youth of the Future on September 29. The event was organized jointly with National Assembly study groups (National Assembly 2040 Youth Café, National Integration Forum) and the National Youth Policy Institute (NYPI). NAFI President Kim Hyeon-kon kicked off the forum with his opening remarks. He was followed by congratulatory remarks by National Assembly Speaker Kim Jin-pyo, Co-representative Yoo Jung-ju of the National Assembly 2040 Youth Café, National Integration Forum Delegate Jeong Woon-chun, Spokesperson of the Democratic Party Oh Young-hwan, Democratic Party Supreme Council member Jang Kyung-tae, and National Assembly Secretary General Lee Kwang-jae. Youth Policy Network Head Lee Ju-hyung gave a presentation on the Present and Future of Youth Policies, followed by a presentation by NAFI’s Youth Future Committee members on Voice of Young Generation on Housing, Jobs, and Political Participation for Young People. The subsequent discussion on urgent issues facing the young generation was chaired by NYPI President Kim Hyuncheol and attended by Basic Income Party Spokesperson Shin Ji-hye; Minsnail Union activist Ga Won; BigWave (Korean Youth Climate Change Network) Head Kim Min; Youth Policy Coordination Director General Song Gyeong-won at the Office of Government Policy Coordination; NAFI Associate Research Fellow Lee Sang-jic; and Youth Policy Hub Center Director Chun Young-min at the Korea Employment Information Service. National Assembly Speaker Kim Jin-pyo said: “The prospects for the nation turn gloomy when young people abandon their dreams. Young people must have a say in governance to ensure a better life for themselves.” Lawmaker Yoo Jung-ju noted, “I hope this forum will initiate a process for looking into young people’s lives and discussing realistic alternatives to existing youth policies.” “We can help people make a difference and eventually reshape the entire landscape when the voice of every last young person is reflected,” stressed Lawmaker Jeong Woon-chun. Lawmaker Oh Young-hwan said, “I will pay careful attention to the youth-related issues discussed during the forum and seek their solutions.” “Young people are not bystanders; rather they are protagonists who need to participate in politics. I will work hard to make the Republic of Korea and our future society more sustainable,” said Lawmaker Jang Kyung-tae. This forum focused more on the essence of youth issues to identify and address significant and urgent issues directly related to the lives of young people. NAFI President Kim noted, “The young generation should lead the society of the future. Based on what we have found in the 6th National Assembly Futures Forum, we will seek ways to establish a better future and better alternatives to youth policies.” National Assembly Futures Forum is a venue where those making up the National Assembly, including lawmakers, political parties, and institutions under the National Assembly, along with professionals from various sectors, discuss significant future issues to seek better alternatives together. Previous forums are available on the NAFI YouTube channel and the National Assembly Television (NATV).
NAFI Holds Launching Ceremony for Youth Future Committee
NAFI Holds Launching Ceremony for Youth Future Committee -Plans laid for involving the young generation in future research- The National Assembly Futures Institute (NAFI, President Kim Hyeon-kon) launched the 2022 Youth Future Committee in a ceremony held in the National Assembly Members’ Office Building on the 28th. The ceremony began with a brief description of NAFI, followed by a welcome speech, letters of appointment presentation, and sharing of future visions. The Youth Future Committee is designed to involve members of the young generation in future research by NAFI and reinterpret the research findings from their point of view. The committee’s predecessor is Future Creator in 2021. The committee consists of nine members. Their activities are to: (1) plan, supervise, give presentation on, and discuss the academic events led by the committee; (2) promote join research by institutions (to present opinions and answer as interviewees from the perspective of youth on future issues, etc.); (3) participate in international organization meetings (talks about future with overseas youth); and (4) disseminate institutional research findings while producing promotional contents. NAFI President Kim Hyeon-kon said: “The committee will be a venue for members to engage in various activities on significant future-related issues, collecting and reflecting the thoughts of young people.”
5th National Assembly Futures Forum Successfully Held by the National Assembly Futures Institute (NAFI)
5th National Assembly Futures Forum Successfully Held by the National Assembly Futures Institute (NAFI) -It Suggested a Blueprint for Circular Economy and Future Industry- Kim Hyeon-kon, President of the National Assembly Futures Institute (NAFI) announced that the 5th National Assembly Futures Forum, which was co-hosted by Lee Hack-young Member’s Office, Park Dae-chul Member’s Office and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Korea, was successfully held on the subject of “Circular Economy and Future Industry” on June 9. President Kim and Eva Witteman, Deputy Ambassador of the Netherlands to South Korea, each gave the opening address, followed by congratulatory remarks from Lee Hack-young, a member of the Democratic Party of Korea and Park Dae-chul, a member of the People Power Party. Then Sung Il-jong, a member of the People Power Party and Yangyi Won-young, a member of the Democratic Party of Korea, each gave a keynote address. The presentations were on the subject of “2050 Circular Economy Transition Scenario and Industrial Policy”. Arnoud Passenier, Strategic International Advisor at International Department of Netherlands' Ministry of Infrastructure and Water, gave a presentation on the topic of “Circular Economy Policy in the Netherlands”, Kim Eun-ah, an Associate Research Fellow of NAFI, gave a presentation on the “Circular Korea 2050-a Transition Scenario”, Esther Zondervan, Senior Project Manager at TNO, gave a presentation on “TNO Circular Plastics”, and Jang Yong-chul, a professor at the Department of Environmental Engineering of Chungnam National University, gave a presentation on the topic of ”Strategy and Technology Development of Plastic Circularity towards Circular Economy in Korea”. Panelists for the discussion on the subject of the “Business Cases and Future Strategies of Korea and the Netherlands” included Lee Jong-hyuk, Vice President of SK Geo Centric, Nam Jung-il, director of Korea Iron & Steel Organization, Jung Eun-ji, CEO of DSM Nutrition Korea, Kim Jun-hyeong, CSR Specialist of Heineken Korea, and Kang Yong-nam, President of Signify Korea. Lee Hack-young, a member of National Assembly, said that he hopes “NAFI will further develop and study circular economy, and continue to do so until policy can be legislated”, and Sung Il-jong, a member of National Assembly, said that “the National Assembly must refer to cases of advanced countries practicing circular economy and discuss relevant legal and institutional strategies.” Yangyi Won-young, a member of National Assembly, said that he hopes “Korea will become a society where index targets for the circular economy are set”. And Kim Eun-ah, an Associate Research Fellow of NAFI, proposed a mid-to-long-term strategy founded upon the current lack of new growth engine and of strategy for circular economy and resource security. This forum discussed green transition strategy and mid-to-long-term development plans that can create a new growth engine, while wisely utilize the limited resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the era of the Great Transition. President Kim Hyeon-kon stressed that “the 5th National Assembly Futures Forum will allow us to share mid-to-long-term vision and the goals of the green transition of circular economy, and to discuss innovative promotion strategy for industrial transition, which will contribute to establishing policy directions in the future.” National Assembly Futures Forum is a forum for discussion on major future issues, where members of National Assembly, political parties, organizations under the National Assembly and panel of experts can exchange opinions and alternatives with each other. The forum is available to watch on the NAFI YouTube channel.
NAFI and National Assembly Library Conclude Business Agreement
NAFI and National Assembly Library Conclude Business Agreement -To establish a national strategic information platform and promote cooperation to strengthen National Assembly’s policymaking - The National Assembly Futures Institute (NAFI, President Kim Hyeon-kon) signed a business agreement with the National Assembly Library (NAL, Chief Librarian Lee Myung Woo) at the reception room in the main building of the National Assembly on Monday, May 23. This agreement intends to build a national strategic information platform in the National Assembly Library, where the two organizations cooperate to systemically provide strategic information necessary for national policymaking and future strategy establishment. Importantly, it stresses cooperation mainly on the installation and operation of the national strategic information platform within the library; mutual use and promotion of physical and online information held in the two organizations; joint seminar hosting; and other activities. National Assembly Speaker Park Byeong-seug delivered his congratulations at the ceremony: “It is an honor to have this achievement during my term of office during which the National Assembly leads a proposal for a mid-/long-term national agenda, which a single-term five-year government cannot fulfill. Better results will be achieved when two organizations under the National Assembly work seamlessly together on the goal of discovering mid-/long-term national agendas that present a blueprint for the future of the country. I ask them to help the National Assembly to become not a responder but a pioneer and open up the future of the Republic of Korea.” NAFI President Kim noted: “NAFI has strengths in researching national future strategies while the NAL has advantages in identifying national and international legislative trends and constructing databases. Our collaboration will create great synergy and get better results in building a national strategic information platform.” NAFI expects that a national strategic information platform will be useful not only for collecting and analyzing data but also for exploring the results and gaining perspective. The institute also predicts that the National Assembly will identify the mid-/long-term direction and standards of the country at the turning point of transforming into an advanced country and provide society members with a forum to share the direction and standards.