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From the President

From the President

  • Greetings
  • Inaugural Address

From the President

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The Korea Institute for Advanced Study is a national institution founded on October 1, 1996, with a strong commitment to excellence in basic sciences. Currently, three Schools are in operation: School of Mathematics, School of Physics, and School of Computational Sciences. Our research members' outstanding academic achievements not only lead Korean basic science research but are comparable to those of world-premiere institutes in the field.


 The Korea Institute for Advanced Study was founded in 1996, modelled after The Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. After many difficulties in the early years, KIAS has grown into a well-established research institute in the world today. It is composed of three schools: Mathematics, Physics and Computational Sciences. The faculty and research fellows in residence are fully engaged in research at the highest level. With frequent international conferences on cutting-edge topics and with its attractive visiting programs, KIAS has become a world-renowned research institute favored by domestic and international scientists. This remarkable accomplishment has been achieved thanks to the hard work and passion of all the past and present members of KIAS: professors, research fellows, staff, and visitors.

 Most of the research done at KIAS is usually motivated and driven by curiosity only. It is not well known that most of the great discoveries that benefited mankind were the result of research that was simply to satisfy curiosity. Curiosity-driven research leads directly to creativity and, in many cases, creates fruitful results for humanity.

 I think creativity will be more and more essential in the future. KIAS will play a big role in enhancing this creativity. Because of this, I believe that KIAS should be at the forefront of curiosity in Korea. Moreover, I think that KIAS should be the source of creativity and that KIAS should be the theater to inspire the imagination of the mathematicians and physicists.

 The motto of KIAS is 'Imagine the Impossible'. The Impossible arouse curiosity. It is imagination that makes the impossible possible. Imagination makes us create new things. As of January 2020, there are 32 professors and 84 research fellows in the three schools of KIAS. The professors and research fellows do not have teaching duties and administrative burdens. Instead, they have total freedom and complete independence to perform the highest level of research. KIAS is committed to creating a research environment so that the professors and research fellows can venture out into the unexplored scientific world.

 Leopold Infeld, a physicist who collaborated with Einstein at the IAS of Princeton, once remarked somewhat romantically, "It is the IAS in which you can bring new ideas everywhere if you reach out your hands." I wish all KIAS members will be able to stretch out their hands and discover the charming theorems and theories in every corner of KIAS.

President of KIAS
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Choe, Jaigyoung