Asia has achieved remarkable progress on economic development and poverty reduction over the past decades. It is now considered as the main driver of global economic growth and we are witnessing the shift of economic center of gravity toward Asia. Continued success is, however, not preordained or guaranteed. More specifically, the region has to manage several mega-challenges to realize the "Asian Century." These include remaining poverty incidence and increasing inequality, demographic changes, growing environmental pressure, climate change and disaster risk, rapid urbanization, and governance and institutional capacity concern. These increasingly complex challenges pressure Asian countries to take a more sustainable development path, moving away from more traditional development patterns.
The world is experiencing various technological advancement —including digital and cloud technologies, big data, robotics, artificial intelligence, the internet of things, 3-D printing, blockchain, energy storage, and autonomous vehicles. These technologies will significantly change the way people live and also bring very broad and deep impact on economic and social development landscape. The progress and impacts of technological advancement may be different between developed and developing countries. Will disruptive technologies help developing countries in Asia and the Pacific to solve development challenges or harm their catch-up momentum? What are opportunities and risks posed by emerging technological changes to developing countries in that region? How will developing countries and the international development community prepare to fully harness technological advancements for sustainable development? These are some of the areas to be explored in this seminar.
Gilhong Kim is currently a visiting scholar in the Korea Program at Shorenstein APARC for the 2018 calendar year. Previously, he was Senior Director concurrently Chief Sector Officer of the Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department in Asian Development Bank (ADB). His research interests encompass technological development and impact on developing countries in Asia and the Pacific. Dr. Kim has more than 33 years of research and operational experience in country and regional development, sectoral strategies and operations covering clean energy, transport, water supply and sanitation, urban development, education, health and finance. Since 1996, Dr. Kim has worked for ADB in the areas of country economic assessment and country operational program development, corporate strategy and policy development, country field office head (in Lao PDR), sector operational strategy development, operational knowledge management, and promoted technology application and innovative approach. Before joining ADB, he worked for Ministry of Finance in Korea for about 12 years in the areas of economic cooperation and international finance. He holds a PhD in economics from the University of Texas, Austin, and a BA in economics from Korea University in Korea.