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Gov’t to open medical science school, expand R&D

[Image source: Pixabay]

According to Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea,

The South Korean government plans to establish a graduate school specializing in medical science and technology as part of its efforts to expand global research and development (R&D) in 2024.

The government will also designate the fields of quantum, artificial intelligence (AI), and advanced biotechnology as three major game-changing technologies, where it aims to boost substantial achievements. Next-generation semiconductors and space will also be prioritized for global leadership.

The Ministry of Science and ICT announced Tuesday its major policy plans for 2024, whose focus is on becoming a global science and technology powerhouse as well as being a digital role model.

The four main strategies include creating the world’s top R&D hub, driving innovation via challenging R&D, leading the Ai and digital transformation, and promoting warm AI and digitalization with the participation of the public.

To achieve the goals, the ministry identified 12 core tasks.

To establish the world’s top R&D hub, the government will expand global R&D, increasing investment from 2023’s 500 billion won ($372 million) to 1.8 trillion won in 2024. An AI research center for international collaborative research will be established in the first half of 2024.

The activation of challenging R&D also features in the ministry’s plans. For example, in the quantum field, an open quantum lab that researchers can use independently will be opened and a Korean quantum computer cloud service will be launched in the first half of 2024. For long-distance transmission technology, expanding the wired transmission distance of quantum internet data from the current 100 meters to about 100 kilometers will also be pursued.

To secure the technological advantage in the advanced biotechnology field, the government will also open a graduate school of medical science and technology. The school will be responsible for providing medical scientists with solid support in engineering or science, and discussions are currently underway for its implementation at institutions such as the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST).

“It will not be reflected in the 2024 medical school enrollment but we plan to reflect it moving forward,” Science Minister Lee Jong-ho said. “Discussions are in progress with other ministries.”

Next-generation semiconductors, networks, and space have been selected as priority cultivation areas, with investment to be expanded in next-generation semiconductors, such as AI semiconductors and compound semiconductors.

R&D for next-generation networks, such as 6th generation, will begin with an aim towards commercialization.

In the space field, a separate institute for aerospace research will open in May 2024. Efforts are also underway to create space industry clusters in South Jeolla Province, South Gyeongsang Province, and Daejeon in the first half of 2024.

The government will also revise the R&D system to support strategic initiatives. Innovative challenge-type R&D aiming for the world’s first and best will also be separately categorized and investment will be expanded, while applying special exemptions, such as those for feasibility studies.

Around 1,200 dispersed and fragmented R&D projects will be reorganized to increase effectiveness and the phased abolition of aligning accounting years to the fiscal year will enable researchers to start research projects at any time of the year. Direct participation of overseas research institutions in government R&D will also be allowed.

By Ko Jae-won and Lee Eun-joo

Copyrights Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea. All Rights Reserved.

Source: Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea (February 14, 2024)

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