This is part of the KAIST Terman Report.

Survey Report
on the Establishment of the
Korea Advanced Institute of Science

Donald L. Benedict
KunMo Chung
Franklin A. Long
Thomas L. Martin
Frederick E. Terman, Chairman

Prepared for
US Agency for International Development
December 1970

Summary and Recommendations

This report presents the views of a five-man Survey Team sent to the Republic of Korea by the U.S. Agency for International Development in the summer of 1970 to study the proposed Korea Advanced Institute for Science (KAIS).

Chapter 1

Korean Economic Development and Korean Education
in Engineering and Applied Science

The Republic of Korea is becoming an industrialized nation with a rapidly expanding economy. In 1969, GNP in constant dollars increased 15.9%, industrial production grew 21.5%, and commodity exports rose 35.4%.

The Korean government has in recent years been systematically developing new institutions to support the science-based industries which increasingly characterize Korea's expanding economy. The Korea Scientific and Technological Information Center (KORSTIC) was established in 1962 to collect scientific information. The Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) was founded in 1966 with aid from the American government. KIST is a non-profit organization that carries out research and development project for Korean industry and the Korean government; by providing excellent facilities and working conditions, KIST has been able to recruit a highly trained staff including a number of former expartiate Koreans. The Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) was established in 1967; it spearheads an intensive effort on the part of the Korean government to strengthen the base of the nation's technological industries.

Korea has an extensive system of higher education that annually awards nearly 5,000 BS degrees in science and engineering, of which two-thirds are in engineerings. The performance of Korean students enrolled in the graduate divisions of U.S. institutions indicates that the better graduates of the better Korean schools have an adequate undergraduate training. At the same time, Korean undergraduate education in science and engineering has a number of serious weaknesses. These include undue emphasis on memorizing, inadequate laboratory training, lack of contact with the real world outside of the campus, many teachers who lack modern training, etc.

At graduate level, education in science and engineering in the U.S. sense is almost entirely lacking in Korea, and what there is is highly fragmented. Thus in 1969 the nation's 600 graduate students studying for the MS degree in science and engineering were distributed amont 152 departments in 22 different schools! Korea graduate schools in science and engineering appear to have had little if any impact on the Korean economy. Many Korean students go abroad for graduate work, but few return. However, even if they did return, their foreign training would be oriented toward the needs of a developed nation, not those of Korea.

Korea now lacks the technological base rewquired to provide independent indigenous strength to Korean industry. A self-sustaining Korean economy needs a steady supply of engineers and applied scientists who combine high ability with advanced training oriented toward the technological needs of Korean industry.

Chapter 2

The Korea Advanced Institute of Science

The Korea Advanced Institute of Science (KAIS) is in the process of being established by the Korean government to meet the need described above.

The basic law and planning documents for KAIS contain many provisions that are unprecedented for a Korean institution of higher education. Thus: (1) KAIS will not come under existing rigid educational laws and public empolyees acts; (2) KAIS will have stable support through income from an endowment provided by the government; (3) KAIS will be empowered to recruit and support faculty on terms that will make it possible to bring back to Korea well qualified scientists and engineers now abroad; (4) KAIST students will receive generous financial support, be provided with dormitory facilities, and will receive special treatment with respect to military service; (5) KAIS will have an independent self-perpetuating board of trustees that will exercise full responsibility for it; (6) KAIST is authorized to confer Doctor of Science (ScD), Engineer, and Master of Science (MS) degrees in accorance with its own regulations.

The educational plan for KAIST places primary emphasis on an two-year MS program in certain fields of engineering and applied science that are of high priority to Korean industry. The purpose of this training is to bridge the gap existing between the background of BS students now trained in Korean universities, and the knowledge required to deal effectively with the problems in engineering and applied science with which Korean industry will be concerned in the years ahead.

The ScD degree will prepare individuals to do reserach and advanced development in Korean industry and in government institutes. The Engineer's degree is visualized as being intermediate between the MS and ScD, and would emphasize breadth of traning.

After the initial several years of buildup, it is contemplated that KAIS will have 200 students studying for the MS degree and 200 additional students working for more advanced degrees. The resident full-time faculty would number approximately 50, supplemented by part-time adjunct faculty and by lecturers from industry.

A distinctive feature of KAIST will be extensive interactions with the technological activities of Korean industry. This is to insure that bo the the faculty and students of KAIST are knowledgeable regarding the real world of engineering, and can interpret their learning accordingly. Also, because of its clearly defined mission, KAIST will have laboratories far superior to anything available in other Korean educational institutions.

KAIST is to be located in an attractive parklike area on the east edge of Seoul and will have as neighbors several other related establishments, notably KIST, KORSTIC, and the Korea Defense Research Institute. This group of institutions will form a "Science Park" which will represent an intellectual and technological center large enough to have "critical mass". Apartments for housing of faculty and senior staff will be provided in the same area. It is also contemplated that there will be a dormitory for students.

KAIS will require foreign aid in its first five or six years, as discussed in Chapter 4. While the Korean government is planning to go ahead with the establishment of KAIS, irrespective of whether or not foreign aid is available, it is the judgment of the Survey Team that the institution will fall far short of expectations if foreign aid is not available during the start-up period.

The concept of KAIST, while bold and imaginative, is also realistic; every proposed feature has been thoroughly tested at one place or another in the world and found to be entirely practical. The uniqueness of KAIST is in the combination of elements that has been chosen, and in the direct way in which this combination relates to Korean needs and the Korean background. The success of KAIST will accordingly depend upon the effectiveness with which these plans are implemented, rather than upon their soundness.

The availability of suitable faculty is a matter of prime importance to KAIS. The experience of KIST in recruiting professional staff indicates that by providing at least comparable working and living conditions and salary, KAIS would be unusually attractive to the best Koreans, wherever they might be in the world.

The adequacy of the supply of students available to KAIS was considered at some length by the Survey Team. On the basis of the number and character of the degrees now being awarded in science and engineering in Korea, it is clear that each year there are many hundreds of graduates who would be highly satisfactory students for KAIS. In addition, Korean industrial firms will in many cases desire to sponsor promising young empolyees for study at KAIST in order to increase the future usefulness of these employees. Again, through it superb laboratories, strong faculty, generous student support and special treatment in connection with military service, KAIST should attract many young Koreans who now go abroad for graduate study and become part of the brain drain.

The Survey Team also examined the ability of the Korean job market to absorb the MS graduates of KAIS. The conclusion was that it is inconceivable that there will not be a brisk demand for 100 MS graduates per year by the time the KAIS buildup period is completed, unless the Korean economy collapses or unless KAIST fails miserably in providing the kind of training proposed.

The Survey Team also contemplates that by the time KAIST will award its first ScD degrees, Korean industry and government institutes (e.g. KIST) will have a serious need for a small but growing number of highly trained specialists who are qualified to perform industrial research and advanced development.

KAIS is being planned as a separate institution, not formally affiliated with any other academic institution. The wisdom of this approach was studied, and the Survey Team concluded that an independent KAIST is not only justified but actually represents the only way that a graduate institution for applied science and technology oriented towards the needs of the Korean economy could be developed with the required rapidity.

Chapter 3

Organization, Policies and Operations

The basic law for KAIST specifies that the fundamental responsibility for the institution will be in the hands of a board of 15 trustees. The trustees are self-perpetuating, expect that the law specifies that new trustees and key officers must have the approval of both the Ministry of Science and Technology and of the Ministry of Education. The Survey Team feels that this requirement could under some circumstances lead to delay and conflict; accordingly, it rather strongly recommends that this requirement be modified, as for example, by requiring only approval from the government. The board of trustees has important responsibilities and is thus a working body, although honor would also be associated with membership on the board.

The Survey Team further recommends two councils of advisors to assist the board and the president of KAIS. One council would be chosen from among academic people; the other would be composed of industrial leaders.

The presidency of KAIST will be a most demanding position rather than an honorary title. The president should have a thorough knowledge of academic affairs and must also be a capable administrator; it is important that he be a man who knows how to delegate responsibilities and to form a leadership team. KAIST cannot afford an unimaginative, unbalanced or weak administration.

It is extremely important that the senior faculty members of KAIS be scholars of experience and wide reputation. KAIST must adopt a true merit system in evaluating and advancing its faculty, and avoid the traditional Korean senority system. It is also essential that KAIS develop a carefully worked out tenure policy that ensures a faculty of continuing excellence, and avoids stagnation resulting from lack of enough faculty turnover. Only those appointed as full-time full and associate professors should have tenure, and it is recommended that not more than 40-50% of the full-time regular faculty have tenure at any one time. The remaining full-time regular faculty members would be young assistant professors and instructors, who after serving a maximum of 6-8 years at KAIST would either be promoted to tenure or rotated out to take responsible positions in industry or at other educational institutions. When a tenure position is to be filled, KAIS should seek the best available candidate of Korean origin, including for consideration faculty members at other institutions, Korean nationals abroad, and engineers and scientsts from Korean industry.

In addition to the full-time resident faculty, KAIS is expected to make use of temorary visiting faculty such as foreign scholars, or Korean scholars living abroad who are available on a temporary basis. Adjunct professorships would be appropriate for academically qualified scientists and engineers available on part-time basis; such positions are especially useful devices for promoting interactions with other institutions located in the Science Park. Appointments as lecturers are suitable for industrial people who would give specialized lectures in connection with practical applications of knowledge, and would provide liaison between industry and KAIS.

In addition to favorable working and living conditions, KAIS salaries must be adequate. In return, KAIST faculty members should not be allowed to engage in the practice of moonlighting. The precedents established in these matters by KIST should be helpful.

After extensive study, the Survey Team recommends that in its first three or four years, KAIST concentrate its teaching efforts in a maximum of six high priority fields as follows:

1. Mechanical Engineering
2. Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry
3. Electronic Sciences
4. Communication and System Engineering
5. Industrial Engineering and Management
6. Basic Sciences and Applied Mathematics (including Computer Programming)

The first five of these would be in the initial fields for the MS degree, while the sixth category would represnt a small, high quality interdisciplinary group that accepted a teachign role which was primarily service to the engineering programs, but that would participate in supervision of theses and dissertations in degree-granting areas.

It is considered important that each field of study have enough faculty members so that each principal aspect of the field would be covered by at last one competent teacher. As a rough guide, a department responsible for an MS degree program would typically have 5 to 10 full-time equivalent faculty members, and be resonsible for a total of 40 to 100 graduate students, including at least 15 new MS candidates each year. There must be enough students to enable them to learn from each other, and to insure that classroom activities make efficient use of the faculty effort. The number of students and staff must fit the "critical mass" concept, which recognizes the need for a minimum number of people if a group is to be effective. KAIS should accordingly offer instruction only in a limited number of high priority fields, and all available resources should be devoted to achieving a truyly outstanding program in each of these fields.

In the MS program, there should be certain "core" courses in which all students would be expected to enroll. In addition, each curriculum would include further courses required by that particular curriculum.

In training students, KAIS would seek to develop problem-solving power and ability to apply knowlege. Many examinations should be of the open-book type to test the ability to use knowlege in books. Students should be trained in the use of libraries and computers, and should go on field visits to industrial plants. Verbal and written communication needs to be stressed, and efforts should be made to reduce the traditional passivity of the Korean student. The entire atmosphere should be designed to enhance leadership qualities and to give students a sense of responsibility to Korea.

The faculty of KAIST would be organized around departments and laboratory centers. Positions such as department head and laboratory center director would have considerable administrative responsibilities, and so would be more than honorary positions. In addition the senior faculty of KAIST will consist of mature individuals who have already achieved considerable distinaction, and their involvement in the affairs of KAIST is important. The Articles of KAIST propose an Educational Council, which provides a formal mechanism for this participation.

Research, both basic ad applied, should be viewed as an integral part of KAIS's educational program. Through involvement in research, students can learn how to handle situations where the answer is not in the text book. Also, the continued intellectual liveliness of the faculty will depend in large measure on continued participation in professional studies and research work. In this connection, the research roles of KIST and KAIST are complementary and not competitive. KIST's primary mission is to carry on research and advanced development for clients who have need for an early answer to specific problems. On the other hand, research at KAIS focuses on academic objectives.

It is recommended that the MS degree normally require the submission of a satisfactory thesis, but that students who have had appropriate experience in industry be permitted to substitute addtional courses in place of the thesis requirement. The ScD degree would be expected to require the traditional dissertation representing a substantial creative intellectual effort.

KAIS can be brought to a high level of professional quality only if the buildup period is carefully planned to avoid the deleterious impact of too sudden growth. The search for the President, the several top officers, and a small group of senior faculty members who can perform key leadership roles, should be carried out with care and great thoroughness, which implies some degree of deliberateness. In recruiting faculty, particularly at the tenure level, an appointment should never be offered until at least several individuals have been identified who deserve serious consideration for the position in question; i.e., there should always be alternat names under review. Any shortage of faculty to cover initial teaching needs can be taken care of by the judicious use of visiting faculty, adjunct faculty, and lecturers.

It will be desirable for KAIS to start with a small entering class of MS candidates, such as 40 students, and to work up to the planned size of 100 over a period of approximately 3 years. Initial emphasis should be placed on the development of the MS program, and for the first few years there should be only a small number of doctoral candidates. Implementation of the Engineer degree program should be deferred until the MS program is running smoothly.

Once KAIS has achieved its goals as the operating level, no individual department should have less that 15 new MS students per year. The attitude should be that if a particular segment of Korean industry does not require at least 15 KAIS-type MS graduates per year, then that discipline does not have a sufficiently high priority to warrant a curriculum at KAIS.

Because of its unique character, KAIST will be required to pioneer new methods in student selection. In particular, previous scholastic record, personal interests, special aptitudes and experience, all need to be taken into account in addition to the traditional Korean entrance examination. It is important that there be included among KAIS students a considerable number of young engineers with practical experience. Also, KAIS should be a truly national institution, which implies that in selecting students, some consideration should be given to geographical and institutional distribution.

In return for special treatment with respect to military service, and for the financial support they have received, KAIST graduates should be obligated to an appropriate effort in Korean industry or in government service. In particular, KAIS should not be available as a stepping stone to study abroad.

The academic buildings of KAIS should be designed to be flexible, since over the years as KAIS grows, as its curricula change, and as professors succeed one another, a succession of modifications will be called for. Special built-in features should be provided only when there is an immediate and urgent need for them. A preliminary estimate indicates that an academic building having an area of approximately 150,000 square feet gross will be needed to carry KAIST through the first four or five years. The long-range site plan should, however, contemplate considerable subsequent expansion. In connection with decisions as to allocation of resources, it is noted that magnificent buildings do not make a great educational institution, but that a distinguished faculty does.

Laboratory equipment is particularly important at KAIS, and its purchase needs to be carefully planned in order to avoid needless dissipation of scarce foreign exchange. Since there is never enough money to buy all of the equipment that it would be nice to have, equipment for instruction and research laboratories should be acquired only as individual professors devise laboratory experiments and plan their research for the following year. This means the expenditure of the scarce foreign exchange available for apparatus should be distributed over the initial four to five years of KAIS, instead of committing the bulk of these fundds before the first students arrive on the scene. Fine equipment that does not fit into current high priority needs and whose principal value is the favorable impression it makes on visitors represents money wasted.

Particularly expensive items of equipment such as electron microscopes should not be purchased when similar equipment is available in the Science Park or in the greater Seoul area and could be used on a shared basis.

Chapter 4

Relations Between KAIST and Other Groups of the
Scientific and Technical Community

KAIS can be expected to interact closely with a number of technical and educational groups within and without Korea. Thus relations between KAIS and Korean industry should be close. In its initial planning, KAIS should keep continually in mind that its principal function is to train the kinds of engineers and scientists which the forefront activities of industry require. Concurrently, KAIS must educate the advancing Korean industry about the value of good engineering practice and efficient management, and must keep industry continually aware of the potential value of the individuals being graduated by KAIS. Numerous mechanisms are available to assist in the required information flow between KAIS and industry. These include the appointment of selected individuals from industry to adjunct professorships or to lectureships at KAIS, service of KAIST faculty as consultants to industry, organized visits to industrial plants, summer employment for faculty and students, etc. The academically oriented relations with industry should be formalized and coordinated through the establishment of an Industrial Visiting Committee composed of individuals directly involved in the technological problems of Korean industry. It needs to be recognized that the desired relations between KAIS and industry will not just happen automatically, but rather must be worked on, and worked on hard by KAIS.

KAIS shoudl maintain close and cordial relations with the Korean academic community. It is suggested that a Universities Advisory Council of Korean academic people be established that would meet frequently at KAIS to discuss problems of mutual interest. KAIS should use its position of leadership in a manner that contributes to the advancement of the entire Korean educational establishment.

KAIS will be located in a Science Park which includes KIST and other institutions having related interests. Much is to be gained by sharing of facilities and services such as library, computers, stockrooms, etc. Relations should be particularly close between KIST and KAIS, and KIST has on its staff a number of people who would be available as adjunct professors for KAIS and who in turn would probably be stimulated by the teaching experience.

KAIS would also expect to have numerous relations with government agencies in addition to its sponsor, MOST. Some KAIS students would undoubtedly be on leave from government establishments. Also, government agencies would find individuals on the KAIS faculty who could provide sound and impartial advice as part-time consultants.

In its early years, KAIS will almost certainly turn to academic institutions and other agencies outside of Korea for vital help. In the start-up years, the initial hiring and training of faculty and the first development of courses, facilities, laboratories and library will almost certainly need to be assisted by some formal arrangement with a foreign country, very probably the United States. This is discussed further in the following chapter.

Chapter 5

Financial Considerations, Including Desirable Foreign Assistance

KAIS will make a direct and rather early contribution to the Korean economy; i.e., KAIS will generate wealth. Accordingly, the basic capital cost of KAIST and the continuing operating expenditures can be appropriately considered to be a Korean responsibility. KAIS should be started only if it is expected to create enough wealth to pay for its existence.

While the Survey Team was not in a position to make an independent determination of annual operating expenses, it appears that these will be of the order of $1.5-2.0 million (US). The KAIS operating plan contemplates that a substantial part of the operating income will be derived from an endowment fund provided by the government; this arrangement will insure stability of funding. Additional income is expected from yearly appropriations, industrial support, service fees, gifts, and contract research.

To achieve its full potential, KAIST will need overseas assistance in its initial five years in addition to the normal operating income. This requirement is estimated to be in the range $5 to 6.5 million (US), and could be in the form of either a grant or a long-term low-interest loan. This represent a one-time-only grant or loan, to be spent out over a five- or six-year period. It is a getting-started expenditure, not a continuing subsidy, and is needed both for physical things such as laboratory equipment and for an overseas intellectual component. The latter includes training of new faculty members, the transfer of know-how from an educational system with extensive experience in graduate work, and the necessity of providing appropriate visiting faculty during the start-up period.

The common practice in situations of this sort is to arrange for a U.S. university to act as a "sister institution" and provide the necessary assisatnce. With KAIS it is believed that a modified arrangement is called for wherein the sister institution provides a base for a U.S. Coordinator who would search out and utilize the capabilities of the entire U.S., rather than attempt to provide most of the service from his own campus. One of the important values of a formal sister institution arrangement is that through thd U.S. Coordinator there will be a continuing mechanism to provide constructive advice and guidance during the initial critical years.

Chapter 6

Looking Ahead

As the Korean economy develops, it is expected that KAIS will be called on to expand, both with respect to the number of MS students per major field, and in the number of major fields in which instuction will be offered. In such expansion, the "critical mass" criteria with respect to minimum number of students and faculty member per new curriculum should continue to be respected. In addition, each new program or curriculum must bring with it additional funds. Failure to adhere to these procedures will lower the quality of KAIS and will thus be self-defeating. Expansion at the doctoral level should proceed only as fast as industrial and academic institutions require an increased number of highly trained specialists.

Once KAIS has established its place in Korea, consideration should be given to developing a program in which employed engineers and scientists are enrolled as part-time MS students in degree programs. The Survey Team strongly recommends against establishing a system of special evening classes for such part-time students. Instead, it recommends that this program be started by permitting properly qualified industrial employees to enroll in regular classes on the KAIS campus as part-time students working for regular degree. In such an arrangement, the students would be drawn largely from neighboring institutions in the Science Park, although there would presumably be a few others who could work out the commuting problems involved.

If this worked out successfully, and a broad demand for such service was found to exist, the next step would be to use closed-circuit television and/or videotape techniques to make courses available for credit at employer premises. Such techniques have recently been developed in the United States, and are now in successful use at a number of institutions, such as Stanord, University of Florida, Southern Methodist University, Colorado State Univeristy. The acceptance has been very good, and the use of these techniques is growing rapidly in the United States. The geography of Seoul is particularly favorable to the use of television, since a single television transmitter could be so located as to provide service to all industrial firms in Seoul. Other parts of Korea, such as Pusan, could be served by videotape techniques. An important by-product of such a system would be that KAIS courses broadcast on the TV system would be available to the other educational institutions, thus contributing to the strengthening of graduate education generally.

KAIS should in time give attention to continuing education; i.e., "no credit" courses, refresher programs, etc. While only a small fraction of the total spectrum of such activity is at a level appropriate for KAIST to provide the instruction, KAIS should perform a leadership role for Korea industry that extends considerably beyond the instruction that it would provide.

Assumine that KAIS is properly launched and has good leadership, it will by the year 2000 be a great Institute of Technology that will have become the model for a number of similar institutions in other lands. By this time it should have an enrollment of 1,500 - 3,000 students, and in addition will will have raised the level of engineering and science education in all Korean institutions. By the year 2000, KAIS alumni will be in leadership positions throughout Korean industry and the Korean government, and there will be a continuing interplay between KAIS, government, industry and educational institutions, which works greatly to the benefit of each of these components of Korean life.