Informal Thematic Debate
Climate Change as a Global Challenge

Han Seung-soo

Dr. Han Seung-soo KBE, Special Envoy of the Secretary-General of the United Nations on Climate Change, is currently President of Korea Water Forum, Chairman of 2014 PyeongChang Olympic Winter Games Bid Committee, Chairman of the Board, Gangwon Information and Multimedia Corporation and Senior Adviser, Kim & Chang law office in Seoul, Korea.

He was the President of the 56th Session of the United Nations General Assembly(2001-02), Korea’s Minister of Foreign Affairs(2001-02), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance(1996-97), Chief of Staff to the President of the Republic of Korea(1994-95), Korean Ambassador to the United States(1993-94), and Minister of Trade and Industry (1988-90). He was a three-term Member of National Assembly(1988-2004) directly elected from his hometown, Chuncheon, the capital of Gangwon Province.

Before entering politics in 1988, he had a distinguished academic career as Professor of Economics at Seoul National University(1970-88), Research Officer at the Department of Applied Economics, University of Cambridge and Emmanuel College, Cambridge, England(1968-70), Lecturer and Fellow in Economics at the University of York, England (1966-68), Visiting Professor at the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, University of Tokyo, Japan(1986-87) and Senior Fulbright Scholar at the Department of Economics, Harvard University, USA(1985-1986). He was Senior Fellow at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS) in Tokyo, Japan during 2004-06.

He has been widely decorated both at home and abroad. He received the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the United Nations on 10 December 2001 and was conferred an Honorary Knighthood (KBE) by HM Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom in 2004.

His publications include, among others, The New Theory of Economic Policy(1996), Social Welfare in Great Britain(1980), The Economics of Middle East (1977), The Health of Nations(1985), Tax Harmonisation in Britain and the EEC(1968), Britain and the Common Market; The Effect of Entry on the Pattern of Manufacturing Production(1970), and The Growth and Function of the European Budget(1970) and Beyond the Shadow of 9/11; A Year at the United Nations General Assembly (SAIS, forthcoming).

Dr. Han obtained BA from Yonsei University, MPA from Seoul National University and Ph.D.(Economics) from the University of York, York, England in 1968 where he was also awarded a Honorary Doctor of the University in 1997.