The East-West Center Research Program will present a discussion of the concept of “global citizenship” in the Republic of Korea in its lunchtime brown bag series Thursday, February 11, 2016. The speaker will be Hans Schattle, currently a POSCO visiting fellow at the Center. His talk is titled “From State-driven Competitiveness to Society-driven Character Building: The Progression of ‘Global Citizenship’ Discourse in the Republic of Korea.”
Schattle is a professor of political science and international relations at Yonsei University in Seoul. He is the author of The Practices of Global Citizenship (2008) and Globalization and Citizenship (2012), as well as articles in numerous social science journals. He earned his D.Phil. at Oxford University and worked as a journalist before launching his academic career.
The idea of segye simin (global citizenship) came to the fore in the 1990s mainly through efforts by government leaders to strengthen national competitiveness, according to Schattle. Since then, the term has gained traction in civil society and educational circles, leading to a shift in emphasis toward character building. As civil society organizations have grown from within and linked up with educational institutions across the country as well as network partners abroad, he says, they have adopted more normative understandings of global citizenship in their strategies and programs. This has rendered global citizenship discourse in South Korea closer to moral cosmopolitanism and its emphasis on human dignity and the pursuit of universal values, while also affording respect across lines of cultural difference and division.
In his presentation, Schattle will explore what the ongoing shift in the direction of character building means in light of the ever-present efforts in the Republic of Korea to identify its essence as a nation. One important aspect of consistency in the progression from competitiveness to character in South Korean global citizenship discourse is an enduring concern for how global citizenship fits into the larger quest for nation building within the southern half of the Korean peninsula.
Schattle will speak at 12 noon in Burns Hall Room 3012 at the East-West Center. For further information, contact Cynthia Nakachi (NakachiC@eastwestcenter.org) at the East-West Center, located at 1601 East-West Road.