Un-Chan Chung was Prime Minister of South Korea from 2009-10. From 2002 to 2006, he served as the President of Seoul National University, where he was Professor of Economics from 1978 to 2009, until he was appointed the Prime Minister. He has served as a member of the President’s Council of the University of Tokyo since 2006. He began his academic career as a business associate and an assistant professor at Columbia University in 1976. After teaching money and financial markets at the University for three years, he returned to SNU in late 1978, where he served for thirty one years as a faculty member in the Department of Economics.
Before his appointment as the President, Un-Chan Chung was the Associate Dean of the College of Social Sciences from 1993 to 1994. During the first half of 2002, he served as the Dean of the College. Aside from various positions in the academia, he has held senior positions in both government commissions and private research institutions. In 2002, he served as the Chairperson of the Committee on National Pension Development. From 2000-01, he served as the Chairperson of the Financial Development Committee in the Ministry of Finance and Economy. Since 1996, he has served as the Director of the Suam Educational and Cultural Foundation. From 1998-2001, he was the Director of the Korea Council of Economic and Social Research Institutes. From 1998-99, he was the President of the Korean Money and Finance Association. In addition, he was a senior advisor to the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s Policy Advisory Committee from 1995-97 and served as the President of the Korean Economic Association from 2006-07.
Un-Chan Chung earned a master’s degree in economics at Miami University (Ohio) in 1972. In 1978, he was awarded a doctoral degree in economics at Princeton University. In 2004, he awarded an honorary doctoral degree in international education at the Far Eastern National University in Vladivostok, Russia, in recognition of his invaluable contribution to the internationalisation of education at SNU.
Un-Chan Chung energetically continues to author books and academic papers and to conduct research on macroeconomics and financial markets. He has numerous publications in both Korean and English, the latest of which include: Macroeconomics; Money and Financial Markets; Principles of Economics; Reviving the Korean Economy; The Korean Economy after the IMF Bailout Loan; and East Asia’s Economic Crisis: The Case of Korea.