Daegu, South Korea: a Global Meeting Place for Water and Robotics

Mr. Jongwon Lee, Honorary Consul of Sweden in Daegu and CEO of HwaSung Industries, helped the OSI arrange meetings for two days in Daegu. Vice Mayor Lee Seung Ho at Daegu City received us for discussions about possible common projects on the Global...

Mr. Jongwon Lee, Honorary Consul of Sweden in Daegu and CEO of HwaSung Industries, helped the OSI arrange meetings for two days in Daegu. Vice Mayor Lee Seung Ho at Daegu City received us for discussions about possible common projects on the Global Robot Cluster, Daegu Smart City and the Korea Water Cluster in Daegu.

Global Robot Cluster & Robex2020

The Global Robot Cluster, GRC, provide a cooperation platform for robot clusters from around the world with participation from Korea, USA, France, Russia, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Israel, Spain and Turkey. As we met they extended an invitation for Sweden to join as well. While assemblies for the GRC take place in Daegu, board meetings rotate and the next meeting taking place in Russia in July, an opportunity, they say, to visit robotics actors in Sweden.

The purpose of GRC is to enhance the global cooperation among robot clusters by offering a cluster of clusters, or a super cluster that can meet in a Global Robot Business Forum, next time to take place 24-27 November in Daegu South Korea. 500 experts and exhibitors and several thousand visitors are expected to participate in this 8th version of the Daegu Robot Expo, Robex.

The GRC is supported by Korea Institute for Robot Industry Advancement, KIRIA, a national institute started 2010 by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, MOTIE, and funded with 60 million USD to support innovation and robotics startups. Among their offers are to maintain testing facilities for robotics.

Also supporting and the designer behind the Robex as well as of the GRC, is the DaeGyeong Robot Enterprise Promotion Association, REPA, a business association hosting 70+ robotics Korean companies.

Finally, and as a sign of how much the City of Daegu commits to the future of robotics in its area, the Daegu Metropolitan City participate actively in the GRC and host a secretariat Office.

Daegu Smart City

Control center for DAegu Alpha City, a Smart City

Daegu City continues the tour with a visit at the Alpha City, a development area in the outskirts of the 2,5 million large Daegu. They showcase control facilities where data from IoT, cameras and a host of sensors converge in a system able to monitor, measure and manipulate infrastructure, traffic and perhaps to some extent people when there are aberrations like leaks, congestions or criminality.

Korea Water Cluster

The center for the “Silicon Valley for Water”, as someone labeled the Korea Water Cluster, is a facility over 300 000 square meters called the Water Convergence Building. The facility opened last summer and hosts advanced and modular experimentation facilities for innovation, development, research and testing. A Water Campus offer R&D-center and housing for researchers and students participating in water specialist training at the nearby university and their own Water Academy.

A clear message from the hosts for our visit is that they are open for business and cooperation projects. Perhaps something to consider for the Korea International Water Week in Daegu 11-13 May.