From Brawn to Brain: Korean Economy at a Crossroads

South Korea’s opposition leader and corporate innovator is coming to Cambridge.

The former candidate for South Korea’s Presidential Election 2007, Mr Moon Kook-Hyun is coming to Cambridge to deliver a special lecture on “From Brawn to Brain: Korean Economy at a Crossroads” on 14th May (Friday, 5 pm) at the Umney Theatre, Robinson College.

He is widely known as an innovative entrepreneur who oversaw the workplace reform which involved reduction of working hours together with increased productivity. With this reform, he successfully steered his company away from the 1997 financial crisis in Asia. A recent opinion poll placed him among the most respected entrepreneurs in Korean history alongside the founders of Hyundai and Samsung groups.

At this lecture, Mr Moon will argue that South Korean economy or, to put it more broadly, East Asian developmental model is now at a dead-end and that South Korea’s future lies in the transition from brawn-based economy to knowledge-based ‘smart’ economy.

He will also be talking at Chatham House earlier in the week (Wednesday lunchtime, 12 May, 1:15pm) on the subject “The Korean Economy at a Crossroads: A New Look.”

One thought on “From Brawn to Brain: Korean Economy at a Crossroads

  1. The Chatham House talk was pretty lightweight.

    “Foreigners think Korea is great” (Maybe. But you are believing your own propaganda. Just because David Pilling wrote one nice article in the FT, don’t extrapolate further)

    “But they don’t know the flip side of the story (rigid labour laws, high level of temporary work etc)” (that’s because whenever the FT or any other newspaper tries to present the facts they get stomped on by the government. Those who read books know).

    The solutions to Korea’s long working hours, low productivity economy:
    – reduce working hours, thus creating 4 million new permanent jobs
    – introduce life-long-learning to enhance labour market flexibility.

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