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    GDPR Impact on South Korea: 5 Things To Know

    July 6th, 2018  by  Asia-Pacific Global Research Group - Jasper Kim

    GDPR pic
    The adoption of the EU’s Data Protection and Privacy Regulation (GDPR) have intensified the discussions around data privacy and protection. Businesses are working to put policies in place to comply with the new GDPR regulations.
    A recent panel at Google’s Campus in Seoul (June 25) put together experts from a diverse array of fields to analyze the GDPR regulatory landscape in South Korea.
    Some insights to consider after the panel discussion.
    1) GDPR compliance has been slow, because top management and decision makers have had a limited view about these convergent matters. Around two years ago Brian Chun, our panelist from Hanwha Techwin, noticed several initiatives in European subsidiaries and affiliates about a new regulation of the European Commission. After investigating and finding out the scope of the GDPR, he spent more than one year to convince the top management of his company to start a task force team for GDPR compliance. At the time Brian was one of the few, if not the only one, in his company grasping the problem: an engineer from SNU with an IPR LLM in US, he has the rare converging knowledge and skills to understand the impact of GDPR on Hanwha Techwin group and ecosystem. The early adoption also gives his company an edge above the competition, especially in Korea.
    2) On Jun 1, European Justice Commissioner Vera Jourová gave a key note speech at PIS Fair 2018, during her official visit to Asia.

    The EU is negotiating an adequacy agreement with Korea and Japan, aiming to add the two countries to the current list of eleven, which have a data protection agreement with the EU in place (including Argentina, Canada, Israel, New Zealand, Switzerland, and Uruguay).

    ‘An adequacy decision means that the EU finds data protection laws in third countries to be essentially equivalent to those in the EU, so personal data can flow between the two without any further safeguard being necessary. Officially: “In others words, transfers to the country in question will be assimilated to intra-EU transmissions of data.” If no adequacy is found, more focused arrangements, like the EU-US Privacy Shield, may still be created. The adoption of the EU’s Data Protection and Privacy Regulations (GDPR) have intensified the discussions around data privacy and protection. Businesses are working to put policies in place to comply with the new GDPR regulations.
    As explained by Chansik Ahn during his intervention, Korean companies complying with PIPA, are for the vast majority of the principles already in compliance with GDPR. With Japan the EU is finalizing also a trade agreement, negotiated for the last three years, and is trying to incorporate data protection into the trade deal. Coincidentally Japan’s new data protection law came into effect last June 1.
    3) DPOs will need better legal protection from PIPA/GDPR responsibility and liability. Insurance companies offer protection for Directors’ and professional liabilities, but premia are quite high (depending on conditions/limits). Below two AIG products:

    Policy makers may consider to find a way to nudge (as in Thaler’s book) companies to insure their DPOs or protect them with waivers from liability claims at this early stage. AIG also has a digital insurance policy called Cyber Edge, but too many type of companies are excluded from coverage (financial firms, including any crypto currencies start ups and exchanges, hospitals, schools, etc.).

    Hyundai and Samsung insurances have policies similar to AIG policies, but mostly for their group companies it seem. The rest of insurance firms think it is too early to insure those risks. There are adverse selection and moral hazard problems for sure, but insurers are refusing to perform their institutional role in this digital domain.
    4) Korean policy makers should try to nudge big chaebols to act as role models for their supply chain and ecosystem. First, they have to make comply their networks of subsidiaries around the world, which could be similar in size and organization to their suppliers/vendors. Second, Korean companies are fast in accepting new trends: when compliance will reach a tipping point there will be unanimous consensus to follow suit. During the panel discussion a Samsung SDS strategist asked about the penalties and how to cope with non compliance. They should be in the front line to start compliance in their business area. Ralf Sauer from the EU Commission mentioned clearly at the PIS Fair 2018, that GDPR compliance should not be considered only as an obligation, because it is basically good and fair operational practice.
    5) KISA and other agencies have done an extensive work to prepare for the GDPR adoption in Korea, releasing many pubblications with translation and interpreattions of the GDPR clauses. We could not find, but we hope they have also released easy visualizations and infographics too. Besides the GDPR itself promote the use of infographics whenever possible. In UK governmental agencies and NGOa are publishing infographics as the one below:


    This article is an excerpt from the following (all permissions granted):


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    South Korea: An emulation economy success story

    June 2nd, 2018  by  Asia-Pacific Global Research Group - Jasper Kim

    South Korea: An emulation economy success story
    Emulation: 1. (obsolete) ambitious or envious rivalry / 2. ambition or endeavor to equal or excel others.
    Every country has its own set of fairy tales that, repeated generation after generation for their originality and literary significance, help to preserve and pass on important cultural, moral and historical values. Aesop’s fairy tales and Talmud stories have been conserved and are still read today to kids all over the world to hand down in simple entertaining ways important moral lessons. Greek and Roman comedies and tragedies were cathartic rituals and in some case propaganda tools, where whole cities such as Athens in 5th century BC and Rome later could inspire discussions and elaborate on important current issues about the state of politics, diplomacy and society. Still today similarly movies have the same force and role of inspiring and interpreting events of our world.
    Of course different countries have different fairy tales and main characters, typical and peculiar to their realities. In Korea there is a popular fairy tale entitled “Golden ax, silver ax”. The protagonists are one young carpenter, who makes a great fortune through his sincerity, and a greedy neighbor, who, after hearing of the carpenter, tries to obtain similarly a golden and silver ax to no avail. After losing his steel ax, the sincerity of the carpenter is tested by a mountain spirit, who asks if the lost ax was golden or silver. By answering sincerely, the carpenter receives all three axes. The villain differently shows his greed. This kind of fairy tales are common in Korea traditional heritage and the greedy envious neighbor is a constant character.
    Journalists, writers and experts based in the country have oftentimes referred to Korea as the economy of envy or emulation,¹ because one of the pillar of her success can be traced back to the extreme competitive edge and to the intense ambition or endeavor of Koreans to equal or excel their peers. On a negative note emulation contributes to counterfeiting, plagiarism and conformism, deemphasizing critical reasoning, out of the box thinking and creative problem solving. On a positive side this refusal to accept the status quo and the willingness to do whatever it takes to improve current and/or adverse situations are really the mindsets and behaviors that have prompted Korean economic growth.
    This quest for excellence, which can partly explain Korean love for luxury products, early adoption of the newest products and best technological gadgets and even over-reliance on plastic surgery, is compensated by the impatience in consuming those products as fastest as possible “빨리 빨리”, which is noticeable for instance from rocket speed e-commerce deliveries, instant food consumption, short life cycle of smartphones, very limited urban conservation.
    There are growing concerns that Korea’s education system encourages emulation rather than innovation. Also in China, Jack Ma, the founder of e-commerce company Alibaba, has voiced similar concerns for his country:
    “If we are not innovative…if we are not creative enough it will be very difficult to survive in this century”.²
    In times where technological changes are accelerating at light speed, “foundational skills” like creativity, critical thinking, problem solving and empathy will be more relevant and important, because “when machines can put humans to shame in performing routine job-specific tasks, it makes sense to think about the skills that computers find harder to learn”.³
    ¹ Andrew Salmon interview for the AsiaSociety.
    “For one, Korea faces an enormous social problem: Their society has become overly competitive. I think this stems from traditional village culture with its “economics of envy” — i.e., “if Kim has something new, Park wants it too” — magnified a thousand-fold by surging economic growth and urbanization, and magnified further by government and corporate messaging urging people onward, ever onward. Now people have not only bought into it, they are trapped in it. For example many mums hate the education stresses, but still feel compelled to shove their children headfirst into the sausage grinder, as they have to “keep up with the Kims.”




    Persuading Pyongyang: A Non-Confidential Memo for the Trump-Kim Talks

    April 19th, 2018  by  Asia-Pacific Global Research Group - Jasper Kim

    Persuading Pyongyang: A Non-Confidential Memo for the Trump-Kim Talks

    By Jasper Kim

    Jasper Kim, JD/MBA, is the author of Persuasion: The Hidden Forces That Influence Negotiations (Routledge 2018). He is a lawyer, former investment banker, and Director of the Center for Conflict Management at Ewha University in Seoul, Korea. He was a former visiting scholar at Harvard University and Stanford University. Follow him on Twitter: @JasperKim101.
    APG note: this blog is a partial version of the full CNN article found here.
    The two most dramatic political figures in modern history—US president Donald Trump and the DPRK’s Kim Jong Un—have agreed in principle to meet in face-to-face negotiations. Will the Trump-Kim talks lead to an epic battle with only one man standing to claim victory? Or could the first talks between a sitting US president and North Korea’s leader culminate towards cooperation?
    To Trump, who famously quipped that “Everything is negotiable,” he likely sees the talks as transactional within the broader strokes of the “art of the deal.” Trump’s background hails from the world of high stakes real estate deals in New York. A leader knowingly or unknowingly takes such experience and outlook to higher office. This may be why Trump believes he must always exude uber-confidence and strength. The world, as viewed from his purview, exists in a Hobbesian state, a law of the jungle that can fluctuate wildly and precariously. Thus, his modus operandi is: a good offense is the best defense. No middle ground exists. You are either in the fight club or not.
    All the while, Kim Jong Un is watching. So what could North Korea’s Supreme Leader be thinking regarding the prospect of negotiating with Trump who previously proclaimed, “I’m really a great negotiator, I know how to negotiate, I like making deals”? It could be that Kim now views Trump with an increasing level of recognition and respect, formed by watching the commander-in-chief in action since taking office. Based on such observations from Kim’s line of sight, when it comes to the use of possible force, Trump seems like he could truly mean what he says. And this could be the ultimate wake-up call for Kim. If a Stalinist-inspired leader understands one thing, it is the use of force.
    A fear factor is also at play within such recognition and respect. In fact, the fear factor is arguably what is driving Kim and Trump together towards the same path of direct talks. They both, albeit reluctantly, now fear and respect each other to the point where neither one sees a more viable option than entering into negotiations. In an ironic twist, both also share similar negotiation tactics. Trump and Kim have each made audacious claims towards a course of action, from constructing walls to launching missile tests, that embolden key domestic audiences. They may not like or trust one other, but Trump and Kim can certainly understand each other.
    In a high-stakes negotiation game of one-on-one, tit-for-tat, one-upsmanship, both Trump and Kim increased their rhetoric to the seemingly very outer limits. This was their way of stress-testing the other’s mettle. But neither has blinked in this ultimate game of chicken set at the world stage for all to see. However, perhaps intentionally or accidentally, such actions and fear factor have led to an unlikely state of mutual recognition and respect. Both view the other as having the real potential to take action if perceived as being ignored, slighted, or disrespected. At the same time, Kim and Trump realize that a possible next step in escalation across a fuzzy, undefined, and blurry redline would not yield any benefit for either side. Crossing such redline would lead to a more than likely mutually-assured destruction (MAD) outcome. Of course, based on iterated war game simulations, the US would win such a conflict. But the more calibrated question is: “win” at what cost, economically, reputationally, and in terms of how many lives lost?
    From Kim Jong Un’s perspective, his world is a Stalinist world largely frozen in time since the 1950-53 Korean War. Like Trump, Kim also sees the world in Hobbesian terms. To protect himself and his homeland, Kim wants nuclear weapons as a protective shield, similar to how a person may want a gun to safeguard his or her home. Kim also wants economic assistance to protect himself and those loyal to him. But the savvy negotiator’s question is not “what” a person wants, but “why” a person wants it. Such framing shift prompts a negotiation paradigm shift from a competitive (distributive, win-lose) mindset to a cooperative (integrative, win-win) mindset.
    Given this, the fundamental questions should also shift from positional-based questions—such as the number of nuclear weapons North Korea may want, or the number of US troops remaining in South Korea—to instead ask “why” interest-based questions often hiding and lurking underneath such positions. Why, for instance, would a secluded state want nuclear weapons, akin to why would a person want a weapon for protection at home? If it is fear of aggression, what is the best solution to remedy such fear? These are often the invisible influencers in a negotiation Yet despite Trump and Kim’s seeming positional differences, both share some common interests, from selflessly altruistic to purely self-focused. These range from securing peace and security in the Asia-Pacific region to cementing their respective legacies.


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    Asia’s Next Crisis will be a Climate Change Crisis: Using Environmental Impact Bonds to Fund Remediation Responses

    July 20th, 2017  by  Asia-Pacific Global Research Group - Jasper Kim

    In a recent article by the Financial Times (FT), a recent Asia Development Bank (ADB) report warned of a coming climate change crisis.
    Here are five (5) major takeaways:
    – Asia will be particularly affected due to its large population, dependence on certain crops highly impacted by climate change (e.g., rice yields are forecasted to drop precipitously), as well as having a notable population on or near coastal areas.
    – Asia also accounts for almost two-thirds of the 20 cities it is estimated will suffer the greatest increase in financial losses to flooding over the next decades.
    – Rising mean temperatures risk killing tens of thousands more older people (certain Asian states have rapidly aging populations), while deadly or debilitating mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria and dengue fever are likely to flourish.
    – Mean summertime temperatures in north-west China, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Tajikistan are projected to rise as much as 8C by 2100. Rainfall is forecast to climb by half in many land areas of the Asia-Pacific region, creating new flooding risks.
    – The ADB says it has screened its investments for climate change implications, asking questions such as whether new cities, bridges and roads will be able to cope with more severe flooding and other threats. It says other action that could help would be to shift agricultural practices away from evaporation-prone surface irrigation to more water-conscious drip irrigation methods.
    Apart from IGO and public sector funding, one innovative way of financing such climate change remediation measures could be the use of pay-for-performance (PFP) environmental impact bonds (EIBs, a specialized form of social impact bond, SIB).
    The first EIB/SIB used in the US occurred last year involving DC Water, Calvert Foundation and Goldman Sachs Group, among others.
    Social Finance defines a SIB as “a public-private partnership which funds effective social services through a performance-based contract. Social Impact Bonds enable federal, state, and local governments to partner with high-performing service providers by using private investment to develop, coordinate, or expand effective programs. If, following measurement and evaluation, the program achieves predetermined outcomes and performance metrics, then the outcomes payor repays the original investment. However, if the program does not achieve its expected results, the payor does not pay for unmet metrics and outcomes.”
    The EIB/SIB structure utilizes market mechanisms and incentives with social and economic returns, which could potentially fund Asia’s environmental remediation programs. As part of such EIB/SIB structure, IGOs such as the ADB could provide first-loss guarantees on equity/mezzanine tranches of such EIBs/SIBs as well as help with collateral and/or credit ratings.
    Such advancements to the traditional EIB/SIB structure would help mitigate risk and thus incentivize other market players–both private and public–to help in this coming climate change crisis.

    If interested in how Asia-Pacific Global Research Group’s consultancy and training expertise can help your organization, CONTACT US HERE.

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    “Decoding Kim Jong-un: What North Korea’s Leader Wants” (Forbes op-ed, Jasper Kim)

    February 14th, 2017  by  Asia-Pacific Global Research Group - Jasper Kim

    Below is a truncated version of the original Forbes op-ed piece.
    For the full Forbes op-ed, click HERE
    This weekend, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un fired not just his country’s first missile test since U.S. President Donald Trump took office this year, he also fired the opening shot in a high-stakes negotiation match between two seemingly unpredictable alpha male world leaders.
    So why did North Korea conduct a launch in the very early days of Trump’s presidency?
    Kim wants to test his counterpart’s mettle: What will he do? What will he not do? Could Trump ever be trusted? These are the questions in Kim’s head.
    So why did North Korea conduct a launch in the very early days of Trump’s presidency?
    Kim wants to test his counterpart’s mettle: What will he do? What will he not do? Could Trump ever be trusted? These are the questions in Kim’s head.
    Words or action?
    Sanctions as sticks are not working as hoped to compel good behavior . Could diplomacy vis-à-vis China work? At the end of the day, it’s unlikely that Beijing would be willing to cooperate with Washington given Trump’s apparent intransigence about China, along with growing evidence that the PRC may be having less sway over the DPRK.
    Could then a pre-emptive military strike be a feasible option? In short, given that South Korea’s capital of Seoul has approximately ten million residents sitting in the backyard of the DMZ, which acts as a thin buffer between the two Koreas, the possible military and economic ramifications are too vast to justify a risky military encounter.
    This is why Kim finds himself relatively unrestrained from ordering missile test after missile test despite international outcry and sanctions. In fact, such outcries and sanctions are the very justification Kim needs to solidify his power base to his negotiation audience — his inside circle of advisers and elderly military leaders — that the outside world is truly “hostile” to their homeland.
    Direct appeal
    But perhaps there may be a better alternative to military strikes and more sanctions — why not speak directly to Kim himself to find out what he wants?
    A negotiation is defined as “getting what you want.” And most successful negotiations occur when both sides get at least a little of what they want. But too often, even the most experienced parties make sweeping one-size-fits-all assumptions about what the other’s demands are. As studies show, we see things as we are, rather than as they are. In other words, people superimpose their wants, fears, and values onto those with whom they are dealing.
    Past and perhaps even current U.S. officials have assumed that Kim is all about ruthless self-preservation. Others claim he wants a peace treaty, strong economy — even reunification. Statements from the North’s state-run KCNA news agency can also be viewed as negotiable first offers packaged in bombastic bluster.
    Which of these does North Korea’s leader want? We simply need more information to know. After all, information is power in negotiations.
    But rather than making broad-sweeping assumptions, a simpler and more effective approach exists: Just ask.
    For the amount of resources, lives, and security risks involved, the amount of direct communication between Kim and the most senior U.S. leaders commensurate to North Korean leader’s level of seniority have been negligent to nil. From the perspective of the Confucian and Stalinist-driven mindset of this young leader, it’s critical that a presidential level leader be present in the room. After all, the messenger is the message.

    If interested in how Asia-Pacific Global Research Group’s consultancy and training expertise can help your organization, CONTACT US HERE.

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