On Tuesday, January 24, 2017, the Korean Management Institute (KMI) at The George Washington University School of Business hosted it’s annual conference on the state of South Korea.
The conference program included a special introduction and welcome from GW President Knapp, followed by a welcome address by Ambassador Ahn Ho-Young, Republic of Korea. An MOU ceremony between GWU and PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games was held during the meeting with the goal to strengthen relations between the two countries and represent GWU’s support for the upcoming games.
Dr. Hee-Beom Lee, President and CEO of PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games and Visiting Professor of Management at GWU, was honored for his connection to GWU as a graduate and visiting professor. His keynote address titled Distinguished Past, Dynamic Present, and Exciting Future began with a comprehensive overview of the Korean economic development since the 1940s. Dr. Lee detailed how the Republic of Korea went from one of the poorest nations after World War II to a international economic power without a major reliance on natural resources. The speech ended with an exciting preview of the Olympic and Paralympic Ceremonies featured new innovations like a free environment; freedom of language (multiple translation services available), freedom of accessibility (convenient locations), freedom of age (activities and services for all ages), and freedom of safety (ability to go out and feel safe).
Ms. Tami Overby, Senior Vice President for Asia at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and President of the U.S.-Korea Business Council, followed Dr. Lee with an important discussion about the state of relations and the progress of the United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA). Ms. Overby described KORUS FTA as the gold standard. She detailed the benefits to both countries while dispelling the opinion that the agreement should be judged solely on a deficit. In Ms. Overby’s opinion, Korea’s economy is well positioned to succeed in an ever changing global environment.
The summit ended with a panel discussion featuring Dr. Lee, and KMI global faculty members Dr. Yoon Park, Professor of International Business at GWU and Dr. KiChan Kim, Professor of Business Administration at The Catholic University of Korea. Moderator, Dr. Ayman El Tarabishy, Executive Director of KMI, posed questions such as – what are the key characteristics of the Korean management style? and what is your opinion of the anti-globalisation movement?
Thank you to all the attendees, we look forward to seeing you at future events.