A history and vision of participatory scientific activities in South Korea
Ji Yeon Kim (Korea University)
Paper short abstract:
This essay aims to study the history and vision of participatory scientific activities in South Korea. Especially, the emerging new type of participatory scientific activities, such as "citizen science," is focused on.
Paper long abstract:
In South Korea, science and technology have been widely regarded as the means for national competitiveness. In this environment, developmentalism could become a key ideology through the history of Korean scientific activities. It has a tendency to prevent citizens from participating in scientific activities in the country. A study on participatory scientific activities could serve as a meaningful step for looking for the new vision of scientific activities.
The origin of participatory scientific activities dates back to the mid-1980s. However, it is only after the establishment of the Civic Science Center in 1997 that participatory scientific activities in South Korea truly became established. Recently, however, a new type of scientific activities has emerged that could be classified as "the next generation." Because participants and activities are so diverse, such as "citizen science," "living lab," "fab lab," and "the maker movement," it is hard to place them into just one category. Nevertheless, it is certain that this new generation differs from the current one in that they mainly aim to solve social problems by producing knowledge.
In this presentation, firstly, we try to summarize the history of participatory scientific activities in South Korea, with a focus on developmentalism. Secondly, we attempt to grasp the meaning of "the next generation" of participatory scientific activities in South Korea. Based on the results, we examine whether participatory scientific activities have a potential to become an alternative in South Korea, and if so, what should be done to promote it.
Citizen science: active citizenship vs. data commodification