A large number of Korean AI developers are opting for jobs abroad. Kakao Corp. CEO Kim Bum-soo blamed the nation's data-related regulations for the brain drain.
Kim attended a parliamentary audit of the Ministry of Science and ICT on October 10. He testified that his company has succeeded in hiring only 30% of AI developers it needed. He attributed this to the difficulties in data collection and utilization. “AI technology develops in proportion to data utilization experience,” he pointed out, adding, “The future of South Korea’s science and technology may be jeopardized without a timely response.”
At present, many countries are already moving ahead with government-wide measures for data collection, data utilization and data analyzer training. The South Korean government is planning to come up with data economy development measures in December this year.
The U.S. set up a big data R&D plan in 2016 in order to respond proactively to future big data environments. The plan is divided into seven R&D strategies and 18 action plans.
The European Union, in the meantime, established a data economy growth strategy in 2017. The purpose of the strategy is to create new data business opportunities by more data access, analysis and utilization based on a pan-European digital platform. The EU is currently working on higher data access, technical standardization, clarification of legal responsibilities, etc.
Likewise, China set up a big data industry development plan last year and Japan came up with its future investment strategy and reform plan for Society 5.0 last year.
“South Korea has concentrated on data protection and has a long way to go when it comes to data utilization,” said an industry expert, adding, “Given that data is the starting point of Industry 4.0, more policies are needed for talents to be able to realize their capabilities without hindrance.”