Ewha Research Institute for Basic Sciences Selected as a Recipient of the Autonomous Priority Research Institute ProgramEwha Research Institute for Basic Sciences Selected as a Recipient of the Autonomous Priority Research Institute Program in Science and Engineering The Ewha Research Institute for Basic Sciences (BSRI, Director: Professor Kim Dong Ha) was selected as a recipient organization of the “Autonomous Priority Research Institute Program in Science and Engineering,” which is supported by the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the National Research Foundation (NRF) of Korea. Subsequent to its recent selections as a grantee of major institutes’ research projects, the BSRI has achieved meaningful outcomes in growing as a research institute with the capacity to lead the development of core technology in basic sciences and the training of talented individuals in science and engineering, thereby contributing to solidifying Ewha’s status as an excellent research-oriented university. The MOE selects a university Priority Research Institute with the aim to develop a university-affiliated research institute that is well-equipped with the commitment to promote basic sciences at the university level, a competent director, and a sound operational foundation into a research hub in the field of basic sciences within the university. In particular, the ministry has been carrying out the “Autonomous Priority Research Institute Program” since 2019, in order to plan and support “creative and challenging studies in the field of basic sciences”, “studies with medium- and long-term growth potential”, and “independent studies by competent and rising researchers”, in order to provide them with a steady supply of research funding, and to enhance the autonomy of researcher-driven studies. With its selection as a grantee of this project, the BSRI will receive an annual research fund of 1.21 billion KRW for up to nine years (3+3+3 years), amounting to a total of 10.89 billion KRW. The Autonomous Priority Research Institute Program focuses on promoting the enhancement of a research institute’s capacity to plan research support programs, manage research, discover and train researchers, and conduct research by supporting the institute to operate a “small-scale and seed-type research support program” for the development of basic sciences under the responsibility of a director with an aptitude for not only research, but also research management and organizational management, such as leadership within the university. Ewha has led NT and BT convergence studies through aggressive investments in education and research infrastructure to become a leader in the fields of basic and applied sciences, and its selection as the recipient of research projects in various fields, from the Science Research Center (SRC) in 1998 to the Priority Research Institute Program and Core-Facility. Based on this basic sciences infrastructure, the institute plans to lead basic and source research through the interdisciplinary convergence of basic sciences to address core issues of the future, such as climate change, aging society, and super-connected society. Professor Kim Dong Ha in the Department of Chemistry and Nanoscience at College of Natural Sciences evaluated the significance of the selection, commenting, “Our selection as a recipient of the Autonomous Research Institute Program, in collaboration with Ewha’s other research institutes selected for the Priority Research Institute, Science Research Center (SRC), and Core-Facility Center, laid a foundation for the establishment of the best research institute in Korea to contribute to the enhancement of national competitiveness through the development of basic sciences and the hub of educating science personnel to lead the development of basic sciences.”
Professor Jo Il-hyun’s Research Team Publishes a Paper on Behavioral Patterns of Video-Based Online Learners in a World-Professor Jo Il-hyun’s Research Team Publishes a Paper on Behavioral Patterns of Video-Based Online Learners in a World-Renowned Academic Journal Amid the growing need to establish an environment for online teaching and learning due to the COVID-19 situation, Professor Jo Il-hyun’s research team gained recognition by publishing the results of their study on the behavioral patterns of online learners. In the world-renowned academic journal The Internet And Higher Education, Professor Jo’s team published a paper titled “Video learning analytics: Investigating behavioral patterns and learner clusters in video-based online learning,” which categorized behavioral patterns of learners by analyzing the big data of video-based online learning settings and analyzed academic performance by category. The study was conducted to obtain insights into learners’ behavioral patterns in video-based learning by employing “learning analytics.” Learning analytics is an intelligent convergence edutech that supports teaching and learning decision-making based on the measurement, collection, analysis, and prediction of big data generated in learning activities and contexts occurring in learning environments that are technologically mediated. The research team carried out one-on-one experiments on 72 college students utilizing “Learning Analytics for Prediction & Action (LAPA),” the EduTech Convergence Lab’s self-developed video player, and analyzed learners’ log data and academic performance recorded in the process of online learning, along with the learners’ general characteristics. The study was significant in both theoretical and practical aspects. First of all, it was theoretically meaningful in that the study identified learners’ patterns as demonstrated in the learning process, and automatically analyzed active and passive learners’ learning patterns using only log data. The study also gained attention as learners’ patterns and categories ascertained through the study offered experimental evidence in enriching the discussion on theoretical models suggested in prior studies. Professor Jo expressed his high expectations, commenting, “Our findings will allow educators, who are unable to observe learners face-to-face with the establishment of video-based education such as Zoom as the ‘new normal’ in the coronavirus pandemic era, to understand learners’ characteristics in order to apply differentiated instructional strategies and guidelines to teaching learners with different behavioral profiles.” The study was conducted with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea, jointly participated in by Professor Jo Il-hyun (corresponding author), and Dr. Yoon Mee-hyun (first author) and researcher Lee Jung-eun (co-author) at the EduTech Convergence Lab.
Research Team of Professor Bahn Hyo-kyung Publishes a Paper in IEEE Transactions on Industrial InformaticsResearch Team of Professor Bahn Hyo-kyung Publishes a Paper in IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics Professor Bahn Hyo-kyung, the Computer Science and Engineering major Yoo Suhyeon , Jo Yewon(co-first authors) A research team led by Professor Bahn Hyo-kyung from the Computer Science and Engineering major has succeeded in developing a scheduling technology that can immediately respond to sudden user inputs in real-time systems. This technology is expected to overcome the limitations of existing real-time systems that operate only in a predefined manner and instead respond immediately to sudden environmental changes while enabling power savings of 66.8% on average. Incorporating the findings of this study, a paper titled “Integrated scheduling of real-time and interactive tasks for configurable industrial systems” was published in the online edition of IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics. In particular, significant attention has been directed to the achievements of Yoo Su-hyeon and Jo Ye-won majoring in Computer Science and Engineering, incoming class of 2017, who participated in the study as co-first authors. A real-time system is a mission-critical system that requires each task to be processed within a given time. Unlike general purpose computers we commonly use, it refers to a system that does not allow a single error by determining the planning of hardware resources in advance. Concepts such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Smart Factory, and Cyber Physical System (CPS), which have recently come into the spotlight, are mostly real-time systems. There is increasing demand for these real-time systems to operate by accepting user inputs. However, real-time systems that process tasks in a predefined way and general purpose computer systems designed to handle irregular user inputs operate under very different hardware resource management methods, so integrating the two in a single system is a highly challenging research area. By tackling these problems, the research team led by Professor Bahn developed system management technologies that concurrently support real-time tasks and interactive tasks, and identified ways to simultaneously satisfy various requirements, such as ensuring deadlines for real-time tasks and response times for interactive tasks and reducing system power consumption, using an artificial intelligence technology called genetic algorithm (GA). Principal investigator Professor Bahn expressed his expectations, remarking that “This is a software source technology with high applicability as it can flexibly expand the functionality of real-time systems in various industrial settings in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”
Research Institute at Ewha Selected for the 2021 Core-Facility and Basic Research Laboratory ProjectsResearch Institute at Ewha Selected for the 2021 Core-Facility and Basic Research Laboratory Projects While Ewha endeavors to reinforce its research capabilities with an aim to develop a creative research ecosystem for world-class performance under the vision of “A Creative and Innovative Platform Leading to a Sustainable Society,” a research institute under the College of Pharmacy, research teams led by professors from the College of Natural Sciences and ELTEC College of Engineering have been consecutively selected for major research projects, consolidating Ewha’s status as a research-oriented university. Drug Development Research Core Center Selected as a “Core-Facility” The Drug Development Research Core Center has been selected for the 2021 Core-Facility project, which is sponsored by the Ministry of Education and operated by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) and the Korea Basic Science Institute. Accordingly, the center will receive research funding of 3.4 billion KRW for up to six years (3+3 years) for the relocation and maintenance of research equipment, performance upgrade expenses, payroll and training costs for technical staff, and other operating expenses. Ten faculty members from the College of Pharmacy and eight dedicated personnel consisting of masters or doctoral degree holders will participate in laying the groundwork for the center. The center consists of target identification & drug screening team, drug optimization & target validation team, and drug efficacy evaluation & mode-of-action determination team. Through systematic collaboration among the three research units, this center ultimately aims to strengthen the technical capacity of all researchers, improving overall efficiency of the research process. Their major focus is to identify novel therapeutic targets and relevant drug candidates that are ready to enter preclinical testings. In addition, by nurturing excellent researchers who are suited for a wide range of convergence research areas and promoting university-industry-research institute collaboration as well as international joint research, the center is expected to develop into a global R&D hub for new drugs and contribute to enhancing national basic science research capabilities. Research Teams from the Chemistry & Nanoscience, and Computer Science & Engineering Majors Selected for the “2021 Basic Research Laboratory” Project Research teams led by professors from the Chemistry & Nanoscience, and Computer Science and Engineering majors have been selected for the “2021 Basic Research Laboratory (BRL)” project supported as part of the “2021 Group Research” program by the Ministry of Science and ICT and the NRF. Professor Sang-gi Lee, Hyunwoo Kim A research team from the Department of Chemistry & Nanoscience at the College of Natural Sciences has been selected as a pioneering BRL in the field of chemistry to conduct research under the theme of “the development of cooperative catalytic systems,” and will receive a total of 1.355 billion KRW for 33 months (June 2021 to February 2024). The research team led by Professor Lee Sang-gi (PI) from the Department of Chemistry & Nanoscience gained recognition for recruiting a team of highly qualified researchers and suggesting a creative and challenging research topic, and became selected for the sole pioneering BRL in the field of chemistry. The team plans to carry out “a study on the development of cooperative catalytic systems” with the aim to pioneer a novel catalysis system that can overcome the limitations of existing catalysis. Professor Dongbo Min, Young Jun Kim, Uran Oh A research team from the Computer Science and Engineering major at ELTEC College of Engineering has been chosen as an advanced BRL in the field of computer and software, and will receive a total of 1.375 billion KRW in research funding for the next 33 months (June 2021 - February 2024) to conduct a study titled “AiA (AI in Action): Autonomous action planning artificial intelligence.” Through this project, the team led by Professor Min Dongbo (PI) from the Computer Science and Engineering major plans to pioneer a new research field in artificial intelligence and lead the field of robotics AI research based on computer science, which has not been sufficiently explored in the field of robotics in Korea, by securing source technology that allows artificial intelligence to make autonomous judgments and plans in a given situation.
Center for Dioxygen Chemistry Led by Professor Wonwoo Nam Selected for the “Research Leader Program of the National ReseCenter for Dioxygen Chemistry Led by Professor Wonwoo Nam Selected for the “Research Leader Program of the National Research Foundation of Korea” in 2021 Center for Dioxygen Chemistry (CDC) led by Professor Wonwoo Nam at the Department of Chemistry & Nanoscience has been awarded for a new project under the 2021 “Research Leader Program (Creative Research Initiatives Program) of the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF).” With the aim to develop Korea’s indigenous science technology and new technologies for future, NRF selects world-leading scientists for the Research Leader Program (Creative Research Initiatives Program) to foster global leading researchers by providing intensive support on in-depth research by researchers who have been leading world-class performance. Professor Nam was selected for this project in 2003 and 2012, and has been conducting research to identify the generation, reactivity, and reaction mechanism of oxygenase intermediates in biomimetic reaearch area for the past 18 years. In recognition of his outstanding research achievements, he has been selected for the Research Leader Program this year and will be supported by a research fund amounting to a total of 7.2 billion KRW for the next nine years to carry out a study titled “Dioxygen Chemistry: Dioxygen Formation-Activation-Catalysis.” Professor Nam has achieved world-class performance in the field of Bioinorganic/Biomimetic Chemistry through his outstanding research to gain the knowledge in understanding dioxygen activation formation reactions we well as in developing artificial enzymatic systems. He has published more than 370 papers over the past two decades in world-renowned academic journals including Nature, Science, Nature Chemistry, Nature Reviews Chemistry, Accounts of Chemical Research, Journal of the American Chemical Society, Angewandte Chemie International Edition, and Chemical Science. Expressing his aspirations for the future, Professor Nam stated, “I hope this project leads to an unprecedented breakthrough in oxygen chemistry research, while at the same time identifying an answer to the difficult problem of the ‘Oxo Wall,’ which remains unsolved in the field of Bioinorganic Chemistry. By producing results that encompass basic research to practical application, I hope to promote Ewha’s excellent research capabilities to the world.”
EUICF Chosen for MSIT’s I-Corps for Laboratory Business Startups The Ewha University-Industry Collaboration Foundation (EUICF, President Lee Hyang-sook) has been chosen as a new member of I-Corps for Laboratory Business Creation, which will run the supporting project for the exploration of market-linked business startups (hereinafter “Korean-style I-Corps”) based on public technologies with support from the Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT). The Innovation Corps, comprised of total seven universities—Ewha Womans University, Korea University, Sungkyunkwan University, KAIST, GIST, POSTECH, UNIST—will identify around 90 startup teams and collaborate with educational institutions for market identification, development of startup items through hands-on training and real-time mentoring for five years (two years + three years) with the average annual fund of KRW 1.2 billion for a maximum total of KRW 6 billion. The Korean I-Corps is a MSIT project that has been operated since 2015, benchmarking the existing I-Corps program under the National Science Foundation (NFS) in the United States and customizing it for the Korean environment in cooperation with the NSF. It is an educational program for innovative business startups, where aspiring startup teams belonging to each I-Corps interview 100 potential customers within and outside of Korea to verify the validity of their business models, and based on the responses, the project provides support to modify and pivot each business item. Newly chosen for the project for the first time this year, Ewha has established its own Innovation Corps for Business Startups (overseen by Lee Hyung-june, Director of the Business Incubator) and will operate programs specialized for women, such as a mentor group comprised of female start-up experts, education for technology startups, phased commercialization support, and a female technology forum for business startups to transfer the experience of starting businesses and knowhow specialized for women with a vision and objective to identify innovative female entrepreneurs and build relevant systems through the CORE system. co-working place at University-Industry Cooperation Building Furthermore, Ewha provides various business startup spaces and co-working spaces to aspiring business startups teams and support research outcomes in academic laboratories to be transformed for market commercialization as soon as possible, which will ultimately lead to creating quality jobs, forming new markets, and contributing to innovative growth. President Lee Hyang-sook of the EUICF remarked that the foundation will “support Ewha Womans University, which already possesses a solid foundation for research in science and engineering across the board, to grow into the control tower for laboratory business creation through the Korean I-Corps Project and furthermore achieve optimal performance as a pioneering institution for global female business startups.” She also added that she looks forward to the participation of Korea’s many female graduate students and researchers who possess promising technologies.
A Team of Researchers Led by Prof. Kim Su-young Publishes a Paper in the World-Renowned SSCI Journal Structural EquationA Team of Researchers Led by Prof. Kim Su-young Publishes a Paper in the World-Renowned SSCI Journal Structural Equation Modeling Prof. Kim Su-young (psychology, corresponding author) and his teaching student Jeon Min-jeong (lead author) have explained issues regarding estimation accuracy and scaling-related interpretation of the second-order latent growth model through a paper titled Performance of Second-Order Latent Growth Model Under Partial Longitudinal Measurement Invariance: A Comparison of Two Scaling Approaches. These factors had remained unexplained under social science research methodologies due to their complexity. The paper was published in Structural Equation Modeling, an internationally renowned SSCI academic journal in the field of social science research methodologies including psychology, sociology, and education that has been ranked first place on four occasions over the last decade in the fields of Social Sciences and Mathematical Methods as the most frequently cited journal. A core aspect of social science research is collecting longitudinal data across various points to explain causal relationships that cannot be explained with cross-sectional data and changes in the target variable over time. The latent growth model, frequently adapted for this purpose, is an excellent statistical model using the framework of a structural equation model when analyzing changing patterns over time, which has been widely used in academic fields such as psychology, education, nursing science, and business administration. However, it entails a downside that, in the research of human psychology, it is inevitable for measurement errors to occur and these errors cannot be controlled. On the other hand, the second-order latent growth model allows researchers to control measurement errors that arise during the psychological measurement process of longitudinal data, gaining significant attention in various fields where a psychological construct is applied. Nevertheless, despite these benefits, the scaling of the second-order latent growth model has not yet been fully investigated. Against this backdrop, the latest research revealed which method, out of the method of using long-applied marker variables or the newly-emerging method of effects coding, leads researchers to a more accurate estimate and connotes higher potential for meaningful interpretations through formula expansion and computer simulation. A team of researchers at Ewha adopted a simulation method that created virtual longitudinal data with programming and conducted model estimations using both the marker variables and effects coding methods before comparing the margins of error. Consequently, it was found that the two methods each showed advantages in their respective areas, but in general, the newer method of effects coding provided more accurate data in a realistic data collection environment and was proven to be a scaling method with a lower probability of errors. Considering the majority of published dissertations using the second-order longitudinal measurement model are based on marker variables, Prof. Kim and his research team’s paper is the first study that has proven the superiority of the effects coding method. Prof. Kim stated that “Our research outcomes will provide researchers who are planning to analyze longitudinal data by using the second-order longitudinal measurement model and interpret their outcomes with meaningful guidelines and I expect that both domestic and international research methods of longitudinal data will take a leap forward in the future.”
Prof. Lee Hyang-woon at the College of Medicine Publishes Research in Neuroimage, a World-leading JournalProf. Lee Hyang-woon at the College of Medicine Publishes Research in Neuroimage, a World-leading Journal Professor Lee Hyang-woon (Medicine) published her research in the April issue of Neuroimage, world-renowned journal in the field of brain mapping (rated first place in neuroimaging). The outcome of her research carries significance as a meaning achievement that lays the foundation for various international activities to resolve the issue of the marginalization of women and minorities in science and engineering and to embrace diversity and inclusiveness in the academic environment in collaboration with brain science researchers across the world. Over the past five years, Prof. Lee Hyang-woon has served as a special member of the Inclusivity & Diversity Committee (DIC) under the Organization of Human Brain Mapping (OHBM). The OHBM was founded in 1955 with the participation of researchers around the world to improve the anatomical and functional understanding of human brains as an area of neuroscience that is taking center stage in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The committee contributes to brain science, an uncharted domain of science and a blue ocean sector for the future, through the study of “brain function mapping”, which maps the operating method of each part of the brain using cutting-edge imaging technology. Prof. Lee has been engaged in enhancing inclusivity and diversity within the organization and promoting scientific advancements and various cooperative opportunities through the activities of OHBM DIC. These activities have led to meaningful outcomes in the field of brain function mapping, which requires multidisciplinary convergence and the participation of researchers from diverse areas. “Although the scientific research sector requires us to present innovative ideas and continuously defy existing knowledge systems and preconceptions, in reality, there is systematic discrimination against women, ethical and cultural minorities, and the disabled, who are excluded in terms of general visibility regarding promotions, publishing and other areas,” remarked Prof. Lee. “Researchers across the world recognize the need to support isolated scientists and create various role models.” In particular, Prof. Lee sought to ensure equal distribution in terms of sexual and racial diversity among OHBM members by improving the voting method to select organization members, recognizing that, although Asian members comprised 15 percent of the OHBM, there were no Asian members in its 2016 general committee, in addition to making active appeals to the nominating committee regarding the new voting method. As the result of her efforts, the OHBM general committee has changed with the most diverse membership ever in the organization’s history, with 41-percent female members and 31-percent Asian members.
Ewha Ranks First Place in Korea for Gender Equality in the “THE World University Rankings” for Two Consecutive YearsEwha Ranks First Place in Korea for Gender Equality in the “THE World University Rankings” for Two Consecutive Years Ewha was ranked first place among Korean universities for two years in a row in the gender equality category of the “THE World University Rankings” published by Times Higher Education (THE), a British publication of university ratings. The THE World University Impact Ratings, launched in 2019, assess the efforts made by universities towards the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with the social responsibilities of universities comprising a key evaluation criteria. Unlike existing ratings that largely focus on research performance and social reputation, the THE impact ratings have been gaining attention as the first evaluation in the world to assess universities’ commitment to global pledges for “sustainable global development” in areas such as climate change, gender equality, and sustainable development and wellbeing for humanity. Ewha has cemented its place as a leading institution of female education by participating in the world university impact ratings and holding the first place in Korea for “Gender Equality” for two consecutive years. Moreover, Ewha occupied the 82nd place in the world university rankings, becoming the sole Korean university to be honored with an individual numbered ranking. Since its beginnings in 1886 as the first modern education institution for women, the school has grown into a world-class female university with 24,000 students and 1,000 faculty members and contributed to gender equality by nurturing talented women. In addition, Ewha acquired a relatively high grade in the “No Poverty” category, ranking 84th globally and 3rd in Korea. The ratings represent the fruits of efforts such as the school’s financial and academic support for low-income students and cooperation with communities to relieve poverty. The favorable grade in the THE World University Impact Ratings demonstrates Ewha’s standing as one of Korea’s most prestigious higher education institutions and one of the leading universities in terms of commitment to social responsibilities in area such as gender equality and elimination of poverty. Beyond solely focusing on high-quality research and education, Ewha has made comprehensive efforts to better humanity and create a sustainable future for the Earth to fulfill its social responsibilities as an institution of higher education. Ewha will continue to devote itself towards realizing its school spirit of serving and sharing through its social contributions in gender equality, the welfare of low-income students, job creation, global partnerships, as well as extraordinary research achievements.
The EUICF Selected for a Project to Foster Technology Commercialization Specialists and Provide Platform SupportThe EUICF Selected for a Project to Foster Technology Commercialization Specialists and Provide Platform Support Ewha is taking the lead in promoting the hiring of science and engineering personnel in businesses and establishing the foundation for the commercialization of technology developed through pubic research, as demonstrated by its selection for the Business-linked Youth Technology Specialist Training Project and the Support Project for Commercialization Platforms of Biohealth Clinical Field-linked Technology. The Ewha University-Industry Collaboration Foundation (EUICF, President Lee Hyang-sook) was chosen for the Business-linked Youth Technology Specialist Training Project supported by the Ministry of Science and ICT and the Commercializations Promotion Agency for R&D Outcomes (COMPA). The project is a follow-up of the Fostering Youth TLO (Technology Licensing Officer) project, which aims to foster workers specializing in technology commercialization based on the needs of academic-industry joint research fields and to promote the utilization and application of public research outcomes as a result. Ewha succeeded in facilitating new employment and business start-ups in science-related majors by hiring graduate alumnae in science and engineering and strengthening the practical capacity for technology commercialization through the Fostering Youth TLO project over the last three years, which allowed Ewha to receive the highest grade of S in the final evaluation. Based on these successful experiences, Ewha will strive to successfully implement the Business-linked Youth Technology Specialist Training Project (March 1, 2021 to February 28, 2022 (1+2 years)) as well. In addition, Ewha was selected as the chair school for the Seoul Council out of the six regions of the Business-linked Youth Technology Specialist Training Project, and accordingly, the EUICF will dedicate its utmost effort into operating joint training programs to strengthen commercialization capacity in cooperation with participating universities in Seoul and host an academic-industry cooperation conference to provide a job-matching service with enterprises based in Seoul. Meanwhile, Ewha was also chosen as a top Grade-A partner of the Track2 Coordinating Support Type for the Support Project for Commercialization Platforms of Biohealth Clinical Field-linked Technology, which is supported by the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the Korea Health Industry Development Institute. The EUICF will lay the groundwork to assist the entire commercialization process from the discovery of a technological invention to its advancement and practical use, which in turn will lead to technology transfers and startup foundations as well as follow-up support to ensure effective commercialization specializing in health care and medical treatment. Lee Hyang-sook, President of the EUICF, remarked that “universities, research institutes, and businesses are focusing on invigorating academic-industry cooperation through programs linked to technology transfer and commercialization with the aim to apply research outcomes across a wide range of areas. The EUICF also plans to provide various types of support for obtaining a valid patent based on Ewha’s excellent research resources and transferring and commercializing such technology with the aim to create further research outcomes for industrial innovation in this new era.”