The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), with the financial support of the Knowledge Partnership Korea Fund for Technology and Innovation (KPK), has launched the Korea-LAC Tech Corps Program. This is a two-way learning and knowledge sharing initiative between Korea and the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region aimed at enhancing professional and cultural knowledge, capacity and experience of both regions’ workforce in areas of technology and innovation.
Technology is transforming our societies and economies by changing the ways in which people interact, businesses function and innovate, and governments design and implement policies. Given the unprecedented dimension and speed of this transformation, concerns have emerged about the preparedness of Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) economies to face these challenges. Among other actions, improving the supply of specialized human capital and increasing Information and Communications Technology (ICT) knowledge are considered critical to take full advantage of the possibilities of the technological transformation and to mitigate its negative effects to the economy and the whole society.
The Republic of Korea (Korea) represents a paradigm of innovation-led economic development. The country has changed its economic structure in favor of more technologically sophisticated industries and has diversified the number and nature of its productive specialization. Today Korea is a major contributor to the accelerating development of all ICT technologies. Among its strengths, Korea has one of the highest rates of spending on Research and Development (R&D) in the world; it also has a highly educated labor force with a strong interest in science and technology. Many higher education institutions in Korea provide innovative and high-quality programs, which constitutes an important contribution to its reputation as a global ICT leader.
This initiative aims to support public officials in LAC countries to improve their analytical, managerial and information skills, and promote knowledge sharing between Korea and the LAC region by providing Korean young professionals the opportunity to contribute and gain professional and cultural experience in LAC countries.
Under the leadership of the Competitiveness, Technology and Innovation (CTI) Division, the Korea-LAC Tech Corps Program includes two components: a Korea Tech Corps and a LAC Tech Corps.
- The Korea Tech Corps component will support Korean young professionals to contribute and gain professional and cultural experience by participating in ICT-related projects and/or providing ICT-based solutions tailored to specific business needs of public agencies or private companies in LAC countries for 12 months.
- The LAC Tech Corps component will support LAC public officials to pursue a master’s degree in public management or public policy with ICT-related specializations or other relevant areas with an ICT focus in Korea for 16-18 months.