Chairman Kyu-Seok Shim (SNU, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering), who leads the Korean Institute of Information Scientists and Engineers, which is the oldest of the domestic societies in the field of information (computing), deferred evaluation of Moon administration’s industrial policies. It means that the administration had done well in some areas and done badly in some areas, but Shim did not look deeply into the matter. Professor Shim graduated from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering from SNU (Class of 1986), and received his master’s and doctoral degrees from Maryland State University in College Park, USA. Since January of this year, he has been leading the Korean Institute of Information Scientists and Engineers.
Chairman Shim cited Democratic Party presidential candidate Jae-Myeong Lee’s policy to more than double the number of software(SW)-centered universities and support local universities as a base for fostering SW talent. He evaluated it as the most notable of the candidate’s industrial-economic policies.
SW-centered universities are a project that the Ministry of Science and ICT has been carrying out since 2015. As software began to function as a means of enhancing the competitiveness of companies and countries, they were created to cultivate a SW culture in each university, and push university education to a one centered on SW.
At the end of last year, 41 universities were selected for the program. Chairman Shim continued his evaluation of candidate Lee’s policies, saying that “Significantly expanding elementary, middle, and high school basic software education to at least one hour per week, taking digital transformation has an opportunity for an economic leap, expanding specialized service in military software, and special recruitment for military officers are policies that are noteworthy”.
Kyu-Seok Shim, the Chairman of the Korean Institute of Information Scientists and Engineers (Professor at SNU)
Regarding candidate Suk-Yeol Yoon’s industrial policies, Shim again pointed out the ones related to SW as the most agreeable policies.
“I support appointing more points to coding problems than the ones on Korean, English, and mathematics. I also support expanding the size of, and the allocated national scholarships for departments on software, data, artificial intelligence, semiconductors, and other digital-related areas.”, said Shim.
He went on to say that “I highly evaluate taking the lead in developing the software industry, which is the foundation of the digital economy, proving fair and just compensation to developers , and significantly increasing the budget and the number of government-ordered software research and development tasks.”
Candidate Yoon emphasized “digital economy hegemony” last month, and promised to develop local AI technology to a world-class level, and to create a world-class cloud infrastructure.
Regarding Candidate Cheol-Soo Ahn’s industrial policies, Shim highly praised the expansion of high-ranking positions in science and engineering, and the construction of a science and technology centered nation.
Candidate Ahn, who is the founder of Ahn Labs, the face of Korea’s software security companies, emphasized during the first presidential election pledge in November of last year, that Korea will “rise to the status of a member of the G5 economic powerhouse through a national strategy centered on science and technology”
During that time, Ahn presented the “5-5-5 strategy” as a strategy to enter the 5 major powers. The strategy would secure unsurpassable advancements in 5 industries where Korea already has the lead, create 5 global companies based on these industries, leading to Korea rising to a member of the G5 nations.
When asked about policies to propose to the candidates regardless of the candidates’ association with the ruling or the opposition parties, Shim said, “Although the school-age population is decreasing, the budget for elementary, secondary , and tertiary education is rising. The budget for advanced education is very little in comparison. I hope that the budget for advanced education would be increased so that the global competitiveness of our universities could be secured like in other developed countries.”
Chairman ship added with the assumption of fostering personnel in the field of cutting-edge technology being extreme important, “It is important for Korea to have global competitiveness in all fields of science and engineering. Other than the support for fostering personnel in the field of cutting-edge technology, I hope that the support for fostering personnel in other fields would be continued.”
Regarding the government reorganization of the next administration, Shim said, “Carrying out policies that are of actual assistance is more important than reorganization.”, and that “Experts in the field should be responsible for policies in the field of science and technology, and should be given the authority to manage budget, policies, and programs for fostering future talents. The president’s will and actions will be required for these to occur.”
Chairman Shim also pointed out that the partitions between departments make it difficult to nurture talents in software, semi-conductors, and other 4th industrial revolution related areas.
He said, “An alteration of the quota for each department to expand SW education is not possible in each university because of the partition between departments.”, and expressed his wish to “eliminate the partition between departments even if a special policy has to be enacted, since it is very difficult for universities to self-adjust the quotas for their departments.”
Meanwhile, the Korean Institute of Information Scientists and Engineers, led by Chairman Shim, was established on March 3, 1973, to contribute to the development of information science and technology. It is the oldest among local societies in information science, and will celebrate its 50th anniversary next year.
During the software convergence symposium led by Korean Institute of Information Scientists and Enigineers, executives, including Chairman Shim (fourth from the left), and participants took a celebratory photo.
Translated by: Do-Hyung Kim, English Editor of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, firstname.lastname@example.org