Technology foresight in Korea: A review of recent government exercises

Ji Ho Hwang, Young Jun Kim, Soekho Son, Jongmin Han

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose – Accurate and timely foresight of future trends and changes in science and technology (S&T) is a key to national competitiveness. The purpose of this paper is to describe recent technological foresight conducted by the Technology Foresight Center at the Korea Institute of Science and Technology Evaluation and Planning. The authors also address current issues and problems encountered in the process of technology foresight (TF) in Korea. Design/methodology/approach – The authors used TF methodologies which included bibliometrics, expert panels, SWOT analysis, and conferences/seminars. Findings – The authors derived 20 future issues and 40 future needs in S&T from the five areas of global mega trends; then 200 future technologies were suggested with a time horizon of 40 years, from 2010 to 2050, for solving those future issues and needs. Finally, the authors suggested outlooks for technological development in the years 2020 and 2050. Research limitations/implications – It is time to evaluate Korean TF exercises which were started 15 years ago. The evaluation of TF will help guide TF and inform policy and decision makers. Practical implications – The findings can help policy makers shape future governmental S&T policy in Korea. The final result of this work was applied to the second S&T Framework Plan in Korea, in which 90 technologies were identified as national key technologies for the next five years, from 2008 to 2012. Originality/value – To the best of the authors’ knowledge, there are no studies suggesting not only future technologies based on solving future issues and needs but also outlooks for technology development in the years 2020 and 2050.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)418-427
Number of pages10
JournalCompetitiveness Review
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Emerald Group Publishing Limited.


  • Global mega trends
  • Government policy
  • Korea
  • Public science and technology policy
  • Sciences
  • Technology foresight
  • Technology led strategy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • General Business,Management and Accounting


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