Changes in the Education Systems of East Asian Countries Look to the West

Image by David Woo*

Success carries its own need for change

Since World War II, East Asia has had the fastest-growing economy in the world. Japan was rapidly joined by China, Singapore, South Korea, and other nations seemingly swept along by each other’s successes in the marketplace.

From the beginning of its post-war ascent, East Asia has made education a priority. Now, the face of its education is changing. While this is much less debated than the economy, it is certain to have a profound effect on East Asian rapport with the West.

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LCI addresses UNESCO


Image by Jane Hoffer

There is great excitement at Lincoln Center Institute these days, in anticipation of two major events in May. For the first time in the Institute’s history, it will present a professional development seminar in Seoul, Korea, May 21–25, hosted in alliance with Seoul Foundation for Arts and Culture (SFAC). While there, we will have the honor of yet another first for us: the Seoul Educators Workshop 2010 is the pre-event of the second UNESCO World Conference on Arts Education, hosted by Korea, and our Executive Director (and Imagination Now featured blogger), Scott Noppe-Brandon, has been invited to speak before an assembly of world’s cultural leaders. The UNESCO conference will look at the role of the arts both in and outside of the environment, and will hear diverse ideas about the future of arts education.

In his speech, Scott will address the international significance of LCI’s collaboration with SFAC, the invaluable relationship of LCI’s teaching artists with classroom teachers, and, of course, the importance of imagination—no longer the province of the arts alone, but the basis of the imagination-creativity-innovation paradigm that today fuels the progress of our society. And that means a changed education, fulfilling careers, and new visions of the world ahead.