The 6th Class of APDA Global Young Leaders Course
How can we confront the next pandemic?
Dr. Mitsunobu Kano
Vice Executive Director at Okayama University
21 August 2021
Chair of SDGs Initiatives Planning Committee
Science and Technology Co-Adviser to the Minister for Foreign Affairs
On 21 August, the 6th class of the APDA Global Young Leaders Course, founded by Hanna Yoon, a Strategy & Communication Consultant / General manager of education of APDA, was held with the aim of proposing policies at the APDA Youth Forum. Dr. Mitsunobu Kano, Vice Executive Director at Okayama University, Chair of SDGs Initiatives Planning Committee, and Science and Technology Co-Adviser to the Minister for Foreign Affairs gave a lecture on “How can we deal with the next pandemic?”
Prior to class, Dr. Kano noted that people tend to value rationality more and neglect emotions, and emphasized the need to look at problems based on a balanced view of emotion and rationality. He also conveyed his experience as a doctor and explained that the cause of the problem is not just one, but various factors around it could work. Through this, he emphasized the importance of students to think with multiple perspectives in order for us to face the pandemic.
The lecture was held in the form of an open discussion. The students thought of ways to deal with the pandemic in various aspects, including medicine, pharmaceuticals, society, politics, economics, and media. Dr. Kano added advice to the students' discussions and helped them conduct a balanced discussion.
On a social level, students pointed to criticism on certain countries and races that could be found from hate crimes caused by COVID-19, noting the importance of education and media's role in preventing racism and any other discrimination. He also pointed out the negative effects of panic and mental health from unproven information spreading in the media, emphasizing the need for the government to step up and deliver the right information.
The student also raised questions about the effectiveness, pointing to the situation in which the South Korean government is simply using a method of providing cash in social issues such as job losses. In response, it was noted that it is necessary to prepare a more effective solution to the problem by collecting data on various layers and problems and developing a multi-pronged solution.
Criticism on economic perspective ensued. Data on vaccination rates and national economic power was presented, pointing out that countries with high economic power have much higher vaccination rates. By raising international funds, the government urged countries with weak economic capabilities to make efforts to have equal authority over vaccination.
Through open discussions, students expressed various opinions and developed ideas. Students could recognize the need to think about the problems not only by individuals, but also by the government, and even the international community have to deal with, and think about various areas such as society, economy, media and science.
The course is conducted in real-time online classes every Saturday, all in English. Students who participate in the class will take lectures consisting of 10 experts from various fields, including women, children, health, economy, and smart agriculture, and discuss international issues. All training courses and youth forums are organized by Hanna Yoon, a founder of APDA Global Young Leaders course.
* This article is written based on the content of the class after APDA interns attended APDA’s Global Young Leaders Course.
** Copyright of this article is in the KGM Lab and APDA and it is prohibited from unauthorized copying without permission
Keywords: APDA, UNFPA, IPPF, SDGs, Global Youth Forum, social issues, Covid19, Pandemic
Writing and editing by
Intern, Young jun Park Intern, Jun young Park Intern, Daseul Shin Intern, Yeaun Lee Intern, Ha yeon Choi
Hanna Yoon (Ph.D. in Media and Governance) APDA Strategy and Communications Consultant/ Founder and General manager of APDA Global Young Leaders Course Director of KGM Lab Adjunct Professor at Soongsil University