China has shared civilization with Korea for centuries and is geopolitically a neighbor like a narrow strip of water (一衣帶水). In addition, the Korea-china relationship has more deepened and widened since China emerged in earnest. China has influenced Korean people’s lives as well as the reunification of the Korean Peninsula and Korean future strategies. It is important to study these Chinese changes objectively and we cannot postpone sharing research assets with the academic world and society. Meanwhile, the Chinese academic world in Korea has built up the foundation of China studies accumulating high levels of research achievements and study information focusing on several research institutes even under difficult circumstances.
Nevertheless, they could not meet the academic and social demands in the systemization of studies through long-term and in-depth study plans about China from a longer-term perspective, building the human infrastructure through stable networking, and sharing and spreading research achievements through periodicals and publications. Above all things, they were limited in making a long-term plan necessary for our society, and there was difficulty in securing research fellows and building a sustainable network due to budget constraints, policy-orientation of the national policy research institutes, limited fields of studies of enterprise institutes, and the weak governance structures of university research laboratories.
The Sungkyun Institute of China Studies has built a good base of China studies in Korea starting from these academic and social needs. Above all, it has secured the development of agendas of studies, research people, and research fellows, and research budget autonomously; and received high praise from Korea and other countries as the representative research institute of China studies in Korea. This was achieve because the institute has built a strong domestic and overseas network, done various industrial, governmental, and academic activities, internationalized them through periodicals in Korean and Chinese, and developed the popularization of China studies actively through various publishing businesses. I think that these results allowed the university to recognize that making China studies social public goods is the duty of the Sungkyun Institute of China Studies affiliated with the university, and has whole-heartedly supported it. Furthermore, the members and readers have been passionately interested in our work and the scholars who engaged in China studies have also given their support.
The Sungkyun Institute of China Studies tries to meet the academic and social call, continuing a qualitative leap in China studies, production of realizable policies, international communication, and organic combination of industries, government, and the academic world in the future. Old virtuous men once said that a person should go to arrive at his/her destination quickly but many people should go together to go far. The Sungkyun Institute of China Studies tries not to lose wisdom of offering food to God or kings (共進) together with its friends that share academic friendships in China as well as the academic world, the government, and the industrial world. I hope to get a lot of support from you.
Hee Ok Lee
Director of the Sungkyun Institute of China Studies
Academy of East Asian Studies