Ministry of Science and ICT recently held a demonstration for 4 ICT-based
public-use devices at the 2018 ICT Commercialisation Festival on 25th May. According to a press release by the
Ministry, the 4 devices showcased include a parking management device for the
physically disabled, a fire detection device for preventing large-scale fires
in traditional markets, a “crop damage prevention device” and a “child bus
safety accident prevention device”.
Held annually, the
festival provides a platform for collaboration between public institutions, researchers
and companies, as well as for showcased devices to gain funding and reach
commercialisation, as well as provide opportunities for SMEs involved in the
development of such devices to expand their outreach. The festival is also open
to the general public, and past editions have provided opportunities for
festival-goers to participate in interactive technology experiences such as
virtual reality simulations and smart home devices. This year’s edition saw the opening of the
“4th Industrial Revolution Hall”, which allowed visitors to directly experience
technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual reality.
conducted separately in a conference room, was intended for ICT officers in
public institutions and small-medium enterprises (SMEs) involved in the
development of public-use devices. The 4 devices showcased during the public
demonstration have been commercialised prior to the demonstration and are
currently in use by local governments in South Korea.
Via the ICT
Commercialisation Festival, the Ministry of Science and ICT effectively taps on
private sector innovation and expertise to supplement public sector efforts in
addressing current socio-economic issues in South Korea. SMEs that create
products to address a particular social problem are supported by scaling their
products to reach commercialisation, while local governments and civil service
agencies benefit from new technologies and an expanded public service delivery
network that extends beyond the existing resources of the government.
All 4 items showcased
are joint products of public-private partnerships between government agencies
or local governments and small-medium enterprises: the parking management
device was jointly developed by Pocheon City and Inno C&S; the fire
detection device developed in cooperation with Gyeongnam Fire Fighting
Headquarters and Rosetta Tech; Bonghwa county and Gwangjin Co. jointly
developed the crop damage prevention device, and the child bus safety accident
prevention device was a collaborative effort between Yong-In city and AVAD Co.
The demonstration of
public-use devices jointly developed via public-private partnerships
underscores South Korea’s efforts to leverage on innovation in the private
sector to drive research and development in advanced technologies.
Public-private partnerships play a critical role not only in the country’s push
towards digital transformation in light of the 4th Industrial Revolution, but
also complement the government’s other tech initiatives such as cybersecurity.
According to the
Director of Science and Technology Policy Bureau (an agency under the Ministry
of Science and ICT’s Science, Technology and Innovation Office) Yong Hong-taek,
“[the ministry is] pursuing three tasks jointly with with local governments,
SMEs and telecoms companies for developing public-use devices”, and that “[the
ministry] plans to support SMEs in developing and commercialising their products
via various methods, including this demonstration”.
Launched in 2015 and hosted by the
Ministry of Science and ICT, the 2018
edition of the ICT Commercialisation Festival was held at the COEX Convention
and Exhibition Center in Seoul, and included more than 120 agencies, 160
exhibitions as well as commercialisation consultants. The festival also
included pitching events, case lectures and business conferences on ICT
commercialisation. Technologies exhibited at the 2017 edition of the ICT Commercialisation
Festival include IoT, artificial intelligence and virtual reality.