Comparing South Korea’s COVID-19 Tracking with Europe: Implications for ROK-EU Relations and Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI)


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When: Jul 17 2020 - 9:00am until Jul 17 2020 - 10:00am
Where: Zoom Webinar

The East-West Center in Washington invites you to the
60 Minutes for the 60th Anniversary Alumni Seminar Series:

 Comparing South Korea’s COVID-19 Tracking with Europe:
Implications for ROK-EU Relations and Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI)


Dr. June Park (EWCW Asia Studies Visiting Fellow, 2015)
Political Economist and Next Generation Researcher
National Research Foundation of Korea

Dr. Ramon Pacheco Pardo (Discussant)
KF-VUB Korea Chair, Institute for European Studies, Free University of Brussels &
Reader (Associate Professor) in International Relations, King's College London

Dr.  Satu P. Limaye (Moderator)
Vice President, East-West Center &
Director, East West Center in Washington

East-West Center in Washington · Comparing South Korea’s COVID-19 Tracking with Europe

How have European economies differed in policy response to South Korea’s Smart Management System (SMS) for massive tracking of COVID-19? Dr. Park’s research examined the institutional variance of digital contact tracing apps to Left to right: Dr. June Park and Dr. Ramon Pacheco Pardocombat COVID-19 across four different democratic systems, with a case analysis of digitally driven South Korea and the three major economies of Europe – Germany, France and the UK post-Brexit. A comparative analysis of decision making toward digital contact tracing apps to combat COVID-19 is presented in order to gauge a) institutional preparedness for digitalization, b) thresholds for personal data protection and c) policy preferences on foreign influence in the digital domain. By highlighting the variations of policy responses on digital contact tracing by major European economies, this research provides an insight into the projected difficulties in global regulation of AI, such as the proposed Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI) at the OECD in June 2020. The research also shed some light upon Europe’s positioning on 5G roll-outs and digital taxation in the age of AI amid the decoupling of the US and China, and explores avenues for cooperation between South Korea and the EU as they enter the second decade of strategic partnership.

Dr. Pacheco Pardo discussed the Europe-Korea/East Asia trade and economic relations dimensions, as well as the strategic partnership cooperation dimension, building from Dr. Park’s presentation.

Dr. Park's piece for the East-West Center's Asia Pacific Bulletin on this topic can be accessed here

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the East-West Center and its mission to promote better relations and understanding among the people and nations of the United States, Asia, and the Pacific through cooperative study, research, and dialogue. The East-West Center in Washington (EWCW)’s 60 Minutes for the EWC 60th Anniversary Alumni Seminar Series  highlights the work of EWCW alumni/ae who have participated in our fellowship, publication, dialogue, and conference programs.


Dr. June Park is a Political Economist and Next Generation Researcher at the National Research Foundation of Korea. She works on trade, energy, and tech conflicts with a broader range of regional focuses not just on the US and East Asia, but also Europe and the Middle East. Her grand theme of research is why countries fight and how, using what. She studies why countries have different policy outcomes by analyzing governance structures – domestic institutions, leaderships, and bureaucracies that shape the policy formation process. She is finalizing her first book manuscript, TRADE WARS & CURRENCY CONFLICT: China, South Korea and Japan’s Responses to U.S. Pressures since the Global Financial Crisis. Using a framework of institutional variance, her book manuscript attempts to answer why the three countries have not acted the same upon encountering US protectionism, and provides a mechanism for predicting policy moves. Her second book project, EUROPE’s CHALLENGES & RESPONSES: Between Faustian Bargains with China and U.S. Pressures since Brexit, also utilizes the framework of institutional variance to examine the varied policy responses from Germany, France and the UK post-Brexit to China and the US in the era of geoeconomic conflict and artificial intelligence. Dr. Park earned her BA and MA in political science with a focus on international security from Korea University, received her PhD in Political Science with a focus on international political economy from Boston University as a Fulbright Fellow and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore. 

Dr. Ramon Pacheco Pardo is the KF-VUB Korea Chair at the Institute for European Studies of Free University of Brussels (VUB) and Reader (Associate Professor) in International Relations at King's College London. He holds a PhD in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Dr. Pacheco Pardo is also Committee Member at CSCAP EU. He has held visiting positions at Korea University, the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy and Melbourne University. Dr. Pacheco Pardo has been editor of Millennium: Journal of International Studies and currently sits in the editorial boards of East Asia: An International Quarterly, EU-China Observer and Global Studies Journal. His publications include the book North Korea-US Relations from Kim Jong Il to Kim Jong Un, published in 2019, and the co-authored reports Preparing for the Next Pandemic: Lessons from East Asia, Moon Jae-in’s Policy towards Multilateral Institutions: Continuity and Change in South Korea’s Global Strategy and EU-ROK Relations: Putting the Strategic Partnership to Work. He is also the editor of EU-South Korea Relations: Key Member States’ Perspectives. He is a frequent media commentator on Northeast Asian affairs and EU-East Asia relations.

Satu Limaye is Vice President of the East-West Center and the Director of the East-West Center in Washington where he created and now directs the Asia Matters for America initiative and is the founding editor of the Asia Pacific Bulletin. He is also a Senior Advisor at CNA Corp (Center for Naval Analyses) and Senior Fellow on Asia History and Policy at the Foreign Policy Institute at Paul H. Nitze School of International Studies (SAIS). He is magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Georgetown University and received his doctorate from Oxford University (Magdalen College) where he was a George C. Marshall Scholar. Recent publications include: “America’s ‘Pacific Principle’ in an Indivisible Pacific Islands Region,” (Asia-Pacific Bulletin); “Despite Stumbles, America’s Engagement with Southeast Runs Deep,” (Global Asia); Raging Waters: China, India, Bangladesh, and Brahmaputra Water Politics (Marine Corps University Press); and Russia’s Peripheral Relevance to US-Indo Pacific Relations (Center for the National Interest).

Primary Contact Info:
Name: Sarah Wang