Corning-SNS was the overall winner of the Seoul Global Challenge, proving the outstanding particulate matter reduction effect of its air purification system in the subway platform of Seoul through the installation of the ceramic honeycomb filter on the vent opening. On February 6 (Thurs.) at 11 a.m. in Dongdaemun Design Plaza, Seoul held the award ceremony of the Seoul Global Challenge 2019-2020, a globally competitive R&D in which global innovators, regardless of their nationalities, participate to seek innovative solutions for urban problems Seoul is facing through competition. In consideration of the attendants’ safety in terms of the spread of novel coronavirus, the ceremony was held simply with the participation of winners and related figures, with heat detectors, hand sanitizers, and masks in place. The task of the 1st Seoul Global Challenge this year was “to find solutions for the reduction of particulate matter in the subway in Seoul.” Companies and research institutions from around the world, including the United States, France, and Japan, as well as South Korea, took part in the competition. 106 products and technologies competed against one another in the three fields of tunnel, platform, and train. Three teams with the best technologies were finally selected through multidirectional evaluations. The evaluation committee made up of experts in related fields and the Seoul Global Challenge Organizing Committee made comprehensive assessments, considering the results of on-site inspections and citizen evaluations, as well as innovativeness. The three winners will receive the Mayor of Seoul Award and a total of KRW 600 million in prize money (KRW 500 million for the overall winner), and Seoul Metro will pursue a preferential purchase of their products to incorporate into measures for particulate matter reduction in the subway of Seoul. Additionally, the city will establish and operate exhibition halls in areas like Seoul Plaza to promote the products of 10 companies that made it to the finals of the challenge.

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Mayor Park Won-soon of Seoul delivered a speech on January 14 (Tues.) (local time), invited by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world’s largest business organization with more than 3 million of member companies. He is the first chief of a local government in South Korea to be invited to give a speech for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Mayor Park emphasized the competitiveness of Seoul, introducing its economic policies and philosophy that have led to the fostering of innovative start-ups with talented people, under the theme, “Today’s the Right Time for Investment in the Korean Peninsula.” He promised the expansion of economic exchanges between the two countries for active support of Seoul.

His speech was delivered at a round table entitled “Global Challenge and Local Solutions” that took place at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington D.C. Participants included executive members of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and experts of local think tanks and in the field of economy.

After the speech, Mayor Park participated in the discussion with major figures of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, covering topics about the ways to solve urban problems by a local government by cooperating with the private sector and the action plan of innovation-friendly policies, such as the use of technology.

Mayor Park then had a one-on-one meeting with Thomas J. Donohue, the president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, to discuss the ways to cooperate for the entry of start-ups in Seoul to the U.S. market and the expansion of their exchanges with American entrepreneurs.

After the visit to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Mayor Park Won-soon met Andy Kim, the first Korean American who was elected as a member of the lower house of the United States as a member of the Democratic Party, to seek for the plan for the peace process on the Korean peninsula.

At 2:30 p.m. (local time), Mayor Park met Mayor Muriel Bowser of Washington D.C., a sister city of Seoul, at City Hall. They decided to reinforce the collaboration between the two cities in the fields of smart city and start-up.

In association with “SMARTER DC,” the smart city master plan of Washington D.C., Mayor Park Won-soon introduced the “Smart City Seoul” project that Seoul has been pursuing since last year. Particularly, he introduced the cases closely related to the lives of citizens, such as the policies in the field of transportation with the representative examples of TOPIS, the intelligent transport system, and the Owl Bus to find ways for collaboration between the two cities.