x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Successful Failure

Seoul, South Korea
January 29th, 2011

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About this event

"Society obsessed about success, not appreciating real value of failure"

The sentence above tells us about the dark side of Korean society. Korean society is too harsh to one's failures. Although it remains a valuable experience at last, people say "Failure is just failure." Even the venture businesses where failure is necessary abhor failures. Failure causes fatal losses in the representative's life. How about sports? Although it is getting better, all the spotlights and supports seem to exist just for the medalists.

Such an environment of Korean society is now an unbearable burden to many people. People do not challenge to do uncertain things because they are afraid of failures. Stabilized lives with low risks of failure is what people desire and endow the most value. The fact that only 12% of people aged from 20s to 30s, who were supposed to be the most active in challenging new businesses, found their own company shows us people are afraid of failure and also challenge. And is even making our future hopeless.

We the So V.I.P. members have long been searching for some practical methods that could change such atmosphere of Korean society. And holding a TEDx conference is what we chose. The 1st TEDxSinchon conference is about 'Successful Failure', and will be our first step to change society.

Confirmed Speakers

  • Hyungseok Shim
    Professor Shim majored in Business Administration and for over 20 years built his career in various realms such as the Federation of Korean Industries, the Construction Economy Research Institute of Korea, and BuDongSan114, a real-estate website. In addition, he conducted numerous studies as a professor of YoungSan University, and published many books as well as academic dissertations such as Well-Being Business and The Diagnosis and Prescription of Real Estate Market Polarization He major fields of studies are real estate marketing, consulting and business. He gives lectures on these subjects and performs many social activities that relate to these as well. From November 2009 he became the Director at the Business Failure Reasearch Institute, and is in the midst of studying the causes and environmental factors that lead to failures in business activities, and methods to overcome these.
  • Jeonguk Kim
    Creative minority, Kim Jung Wook. Although known as a documentary filmmaker and graphics designer, he is most renowned for accomplishing a highly unusual feat: traveling round Korean waters on a 24-foot sailboat. After graduating from college with a bachelor’s degree in graphics design, he entered iMBC, only to leave the company in pursuit of a free culture creating lifestyle. He does not want to limit his life to a single career path. Rather, he seeks to carve out a colorful identity through a wide range of commitments and experiences. He believes that time spent on waters without a definite purpose is not time wasted. He assumes what might seem like an unconventional stance by urging people to simply be themselves and live their own lives, even if doing so might be perceived by others as failures. His dedication to yachting, surfing, and other unique commitments has garnered media interest and opened up a staggering variety of opportunities including holding an exhibition, giving lectures, appearing on TV, planning and directing documentary films, and designing equipment and supplies for Busan Cup Women’s Match Race.
  • Soonwook Choi
    Soon-Wook Choi majored in journalism and public administration at Yonsei University, and covered the IT section at JeonJa News and the Maeil Economy News. After entering JeonJa News, Choi passed through the International Department, the New Growth Industry, the U Media Team, etc. and reported on subjects such as internet, network, new media, web 2.0. Since April 2010, she has been in charge of the Mobile department, which encompasses areas like communication, internet, and mobiles. Choi is very interested in technologies that can bring on change and the resulting shifts in society, and particularly believes that this power to do so lies in the internet that closely connects the world.
  • Heungje Woo
    A GreemZip art dealer, Heung Jae Woo was an average office worker after graduating from college. As a lover of paintings, he conceived the idea of selling works of art in a small store tucked in the corner of the streets as opposed to posh art galleries and exhibitions. In August 2005, he put his idea into action by setting up a place called “One House One Picture ” with his friends. Soon after, he established a number of new programs, from the “Art Financing Association ” in which 1,000 Won is collected every day to purchase artwork to “Morning ” in which GreemZip’s works of art are placed on display. In April 2009, he launched another program called “Enough Salon,” which serves as a marketplace where people can freely sell or exhibit their artwork. Despite being short of money in the early years of GreemZip, he found joy in his new job that he could not find in his previous job as an office worker. He emphasizes the importance of taking the road not taken, namely taking a break from the monotony of everyday life and gaining diverse, seemingly unnecessary experiences. Even with Greemzip drawing significant media attention, he is constantly thinking of ways to publicize the arts.
  • JeongTea Kim
    The PR Director at the UN Governance Center, Mr. Kim, has been working at the UN Governance Center (UNGC) since 2007. In the year 2008, he acted as the Press Officer for Secretary General Ban Ki-Mun, and has been the operator of the UN Online Information Center ( Additionally, he participated in translating the UN MDG Report (UN Millenium Development Goals Report), and published a Korean version of the official UN magazine, The UN Chronicle. Kim's book, Stories Override Specs reiterates the experiences that allowed him to work for an international organization, gives a new perspective to young people today whose lives seem to revolve around specs. Kim authored numerous books such as The New UN Guidebook and was a member of the planning process for the book A Design for the Alienated 90%. Kim is not afraid of using personal experiences of failure as examples, and firmly believes that these failures will one day provide for a rich story. Providing knowledge and information about international orgnizations using all of his experiences, successes and failures alike, as examples, he actively gives lectures at various venues on many different topics.
  • Keonbum Lee
    Gun-Beom Lee, the head of the Office of Planning at the publishing company SangSangNomo entered the publishing industry with failing eyes, and recently even took on the planning, writing, and editing of <좌우파사전>. After graduating university, Mr. Lee was in prison for 2 years and 4 months under the premises that he had violated the National Security Law, after hich he founded Arisu Media, an educational digital contents company. The company was initially a huge success, so much that it received awards from the Minister of Information and Communication twice, but soon reached bankrupcy due to over-investment. Mr. Lee, who in the meantime was declared a visually impaired person, boldly jumped into the publishing industry in 2008 with his indomitable will and optimism, working with such a passion that he edited manuscripts by ear. In August of 2010 he planned and published <좌우파사전>, a compilation of 14 writers, and soon thereafter was able to attain the glory of receiving the 51st Korean Book Award in the Liberal Arts Division.
  • Seongmin Kim
    Sung Min Kim, the chief director of the publisher IWellContents, graduated from the College of Business Administration at Seoul National University. He has given numerous lectures at his alma mater and his book <장미와 찔레> won Seoul Scholar of Literature's best new author award in the novel category. After recently developing an interest in the e-book pay-what-you-want system which allows readers to pay however much they want after downloading a digital copy of the book, he issued his book <20대를 위한 경영 이야기> under that system. These kinds of endeavors did not immediately catapult him to success but he believes that they will benefit him in the long run. He plans to deliver a speech on creative failures and the consequent growth that can be achieved through such failures.

Venue and Details

Yonsei-Samsung Library 6F
Yonsei University
50 Yonsei-ro, Seodaemun-gu
Seoul, 120-749
South Korea
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Organizer 209727

Jooyong Moon
Seoul / Gwanak-Gu, South Korea

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Daekwon Son
Operation Manager
Jungtae Kim
Finance Manager
Donghui Kim
PR/Media Manager
Sungwoo Park
Operation Organizer
Minji Jang
Operation Organizer
Juntae Lee
Operation Organizer
Hyemi Lee
Operation Organizer
Hyoju Jeong
PR/Media Organizer
Hyein Kim
PR/Media Organizer
Narim Ha
PR/Media Organizer
Heesoo Oh
PR/Media Organizer
Kun Huh
PR/Media Organizer
Inyoung Choi
PR/Media Organizer
Jiyeon Bang
PR/Media Organizer
Shinyoung Park
Finance Organizer
Yoowon Kim
Finance Organizer