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Seoul Nat`l Univ. to Form Research Body for Social Issues

Seoul Nat`l Univ. to Form Research Body for Social Issues

Posted September. 15, 2010 11:41,   


The country’s top university is considering playing an active role as an expert by establishing a research entity.

Seoul National University said Tuesday that the proposed body will set and fulfill research tasks in all sectors, including humanities, social sciences and technology, and present scientific and objective investigation results on contentious issues such as the sinking of the South Korean naval patrol ship Cheonan.

“The government has set the direction of research so far, but we need to take the lead in presenting the direction and vision of our research,” the university said. “Universities should go beyond academic research and education and use active reviews effectively using their abilities for society.”

Lee Seung-jong, head of the university’s research department, said, “Without establishing a separate organization for research planning, we can utilize existing organizations such as the research department and the academic-industrial cooperation team.”

“We’ve focused on conducting research and managing research funds, but from now on, we’ll lead the entire research process from planning to utilizing research results, such as patent applications.”

The university is also reviewing researching social issues that need objective and scientific advice.

Seoul National said, “As a state-run university, we can contribute to lessening social conflict by presenting non-political, objective and fair investigation results on contentious issues.”

One critic urged caution, however, saying, “Even if the university produces objective results, it can also be mired in political controversy.”