About Korea

Why Korea?


Korea has achieved rapid economic growth to become one of major economies in the world. It has the 4th largest economy in Asia, and the 11th in the world. It currently has a population of 51 million, and its GDP reached to 1,332 billion euro, and GDP per Capita to 26,118 euro.

Korea R&D spending as a share of GDP has exceeded 4.55% in 2017, which is the highest level among all countries. Regarding the pool of researchers, the total number of researchers per 1000 population is greater than 7, which is very high compared to the major countries. It came from the strong education and the investments in natural science and engineering.


[Gross Domestic Expenditure on R&D] of Korea



Korea had a great success especially on the performance in the publications and patents. It has the 12th largest number of publications (SCI) among all countries, and the 5th in patent applications to the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT).
In European Innovation Scoreboard 2019, Korea was valued as “the most innovative country” and “the innovation Leader” whose performance level was almost 37% above the level of EU. And it also showed that the relative-to-EU performance has increased most in Korea during the period of 2011-2018.


Global performance



Change in Global performance



ICT Korea

Information and communication technology has been a key engine for economic growth in Korea. Korea is the first country who commercialized 5G wireless communication networks, and shares 23.6% of global semi-conductor market (2018). ICT is the core technology for the scientific innovations since it facilitates convergences of different technologies. Given that there will be enormous playgrounds for the software technology in the coming era, many efforts of Korean researchers have been and will be done, to improve their competitiveness in areas of AI, Data, Network with the support of the government.


Main outcomes in 2019


Korea succeeded in commercializing the world’s first 5G network



LG unveiled world’s first rollable OLED TV



BT Korea

BT in Korea is important as an alternative for a sustainable society in response to global population growth and aging, resource depletion and climate change, also it is a new industry with high growth potential and employment. In addition to increasing venture investment, companies in various fields such as IT and services are expanding. Competitiveness in infrastructure aspects such as biological evaluation from bench to bed is excellent in Korea. Reinforcing global competitiveness and increasing market share of Korean companies by improving regulations on biomedical and medical devices are expanding by government support.


Main outcomes in 2019


Researchers in Seoul National University discovered a mechanism of brain that regulate the substance causing Alzheimer's disease


Institute of Basic Science identified brain drainage pathway inducing dementia