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close this bookTechnological Independence The Asian experience (UNU, 1994, 372 pages)
View the document(introductory text...)
View the documentNote to the reader from the UNU
close this folderIntroduction
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View the documentThe region and the global historical setting
View the documentPost-second world war geopolitics
View the documentNew technologies
View the documentThe study
View the documentNotes
close this folder1. India
View the documentBackground
View the documentDevelopment perspectives in the indian economy
View the documentTechnology policy
View the documentR&D and self-reliance
View the documentIndia's technological capability: an international comparison
View the documentCase-studies
View the documentFactors in technological development
View the documentConcluding remarks
View the documentNotes
close this folder2. China
View the document(introductory text...)
View the documentHistorical perspective
View the documentNational factor endowments
View the documentCase-studies in the different economic sectors
View the documentExogenous sources for technological progress and self-reliance
View the documentA desirable path and a strategy for S&T development
close this folder3. The Republic of Korea
View the documentPreamble
View the documentHistory
View the documentDevelopment policies and strategies from the 1960s to the 1980s
View the documentThe plans
View the documentImpact on the agricultural and industrial sectors
View the documentScience and technology in korea before the 1960s
View the documentThe role of science and technology in recent development
View the documentScience and technology and the exogenous environment
View the documentEducation and training
View the documentResearch and development
View the documentReassessment of the policy and strategy
View the documentAchievements in industrial development
View the documentThe electronics industry as a case-study
View the documentSelf-reliance targets at each stage
View the documentProblems and issues
View the documentFuture plan for self-reliance of science and technology
View the documentThe long-term goals and strategy of national development
View the documentRole of science and technology for future development
View the documentLong-term goal of S&T development
View the documentSumming-up and regional cooperation
View the documentRegional cooperation
View the documentBibliography
close this folder4. Thailand
View the document(introductory text...)
View the documentTraditional path of development
View the documentDevelopment of the country in the national plans (1961-1986)
View the documentAn evaluation of thailand's present S&T situation: a macro-level study
View the documentCase-studies in agriculture
View the documentA desirable path
View the documentBibliography
close this folder5 The Philippines
View the document(introductory text...)
View the documentThe historical roots of technological dependence
View the documentS&T policy: rhetoric and reality
View the documentCase-studies
View the documentCase-study results
View the documentTechnological dependence: nature and consequences
View the documentS&T in the Philippines: inputs and outputs
View the documentThe vicious circle paradigm
View the documentThe anatomy of technology transfer
View the documentThe search for models: learning from Asia
View the documentVision and commitment
View the documentToward a leap-frogging strategy
View the documentNotes
View the documentBibliography
View the documentAppendix 1
View the documentAppendix 2. major achievements of S&T in the Philippines
close this folder6. Japan
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentFive stages from ''technology transfer'' to ''self-reliance''
View the documentThree stages to technological self-reliance
View the documentDegree of self-reliance of technology
View the documentLow estimation of imported technology
View the documentHistorical perspectives on self-reliance
View the documentCase-studies
View the documentJapan's experience and Asian perspectives
View the documentJapanese multinational enterprises and their role in technological self-reliance in Asia
View the documentPerformance of Japanese affiliates in Asia
View the documentTechnological self-reliance in Asia: in search of a new international technology order
View the documentNotes
close this folder7. The lessons from Asia: From past experience to the future
View the document(introductory text...)
View the documentChina
View the documentIndia
View the documentRepublic of Korea
View the documentThailand
View the documentPhilippines
View the documentJapan
View the documentThe geopolitical environment and the local socio-economic situation
View the documentFormal S&T structure and industry
View the documentThe rural-urban relationship
View the documentInformal and formal sectors
View the documentNew generic technologies
View the documentSocial shaping of technology
View the documentConscious shaping of the technology
View the documentExisting agendas for shaping technology
View the documentConcluding remarks
View the documentNotes
View the documentContributors
View the documentOther titles of interest

Research and development

A turning-point in Korean S&T was the establishment in 1966 of the Korean Institute of Science and Technology (KIST). It was founded to provide technological assistance to the heavy, chemical, and other export industries. Since then, through the 1970s, about 10 specialized industrial research institutes were established, many being spin-offs from KIST. In 1971, the Korea Advanced Institute of Science (KAIS) was established as a postgraduate school in applied sciences and engineering to supply high-quality scientists.

The financial and technical support of the United States made the establishment of KIST possible. But it was in 1969 that KIST actually began to perform R&D. All the research institutes established since then have followed the pattern of KIST, and the Korean government has also made great efforts to repatriate Korean scientists from abroad and to utilize them in adapting and improving imported technologies. To repatriate these scientists, special incentives were provided and the autonomy of research activities, as well as their financial support by the government, was assured.

During the 1970s, the growth stage of Korean industrialization, an emphasis was placed on fostering industries with higher-level technologies. The government had selected six strategic industries: steel, machines, shipbuilding, electronics, petrochemicals, and non-ferrous metals. KIST had performed R&D in these fields until the mid-1970s but could not effectively meet their massive future technology demands. In 1974, therefore, the government enacted a law establishing specialized government-supported research institutes which would provide technology assistance to strategic industries. In the second half of the 1970s, a series of such specialized research institutes was established, each institute being financially supported through a relevant ministry.

Some of the specialized research institutes were spin-offs from KIST and some were reorganized from existing public research institutes to enhance the flexibility and efficiency of R&D activities. Until the 1980s, these specialized institutes would spend most of their efforts in establishing research systems, rather than in actually doing R&D. Serious efforts were made to improve imported as well as existing technologies, and to supply qualified scientists and engineers, educating and training them to meet the industrial needs of field-related problem-solving.

During the 1970s the creation of a favourable environment for scientific activities was another major objective. To achieve this, the general awareness of the importance of S&T was increased and "scientific thought patterns" promoted. Educational activities along these lines were also emphasized by the Korean government and educational institutions.

In the 1980s, the Republic of Korea had to compete with developed countries in some high-technology industries. To succeed in such competition, R&D systems in Korea had to be reorganized into a more efficient and harmonious whole. In 1980, therefore, the government merged 16 research institutes to create nine new ones. The Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) took responsibility for coordinating the R&D of the reorganized institutes. To make such coordination effective, MOST supported the financing of all of these institutes except the Korea Ginseng and Tobacco Research Institute, which is financially supported by the Office of Monopoly.

Since 1982, national projects have been carried out to compete internationally in the development of high technology. The two main categories of national projects are Government Projects and Government-Industry Joint Projects. During the period from 1982 to 1984, 214 Government Projects were conducted and 38 billion won was spent on them. Three hundred and forty-five Government-Industry Joint Projects were carried out during the same period, financed by industry to the tune of 17 billion won. These projects have contributed significantly to the sharp increase in the R&D expenditures of government-sponsored research institutes. The government budget for national projects has been increasing, and reached 30 billion won in 1985 and 50 billion won in 1986.

Table 3 shows the financial support made to R&D institutes by the government during the 1982-1985 period. For each year during this period the total spent amounted to 35-40 per cent of the government's budget for the field of S&T - a proportion that is much higher than before the reorganization of R&D systems in 1980. If we include the budget of the government-financed research projects carried out by these research institutes, the proportion in each year of the 1982-1985 period amounted to 42-49 per cent.

Table 3. Financial support of research institutes by the government (millions of won)





Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology





Korea Ocean Research and Development Institute





Systems Engineering Research Institute





Korea Advanced Energy Research Institute





Korea Institute of Energy and Resources





Korea Standards Research Institute





Korea Institute of Machinery and Metals





Electronics and Telecom Research Institute





Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technology





Korea Ginseng and Tobacco Research Institute










Source: MOST, Statistical Year Book of Science and Technology, 1984.