chapter  8
Development of human resources and technology
WithSeung-hun Chun
Pages 22

How should a country foster technicians and research and development (R&D) manpower from a pool of farmers and manual workers to support industrialization? In the education market, demand was very high due to a level playing field that was created by land reform, the war and an open, transparent system for recruiting public officials. The Korean government fostered manpower required for industrialization in two ways. One was showing the education market that it had a strong drive for industrial development, which provoked high demand for technical and engineering education. The other was strategic investment for education and training. Expanding the Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutes, it established a world class model technical high school that had positive knock-on effects on the rest of the nation’s technical education system. To foster R&D manpower and develop science and technology, it established the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) with exceptional treatment for Korean scientists who returned from advanced countries. These strategies provided momentum for fostering technicians and upgrading R&D capacity, and the manpower fostered in this way constituted the backbone of Korea’s rapid industrialization.