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Nation Branding Convention to discuss hallyu

The Presidential Council on Nation Branding will hold the “Korea Nation Branding Convention 2011” from Aug. 25 to 28 at COEX in Samseong-dong, southern Seoul.

Under the slogan “Hallyu, into the Future with the World!” the convention will be composed of exhibitions, cultural events and an international conference to discuss “hallyu,” or the Korean Wave. Governmental organizations, companies and NGOs will participate.

“It has been more than two years since the Presidential Council on Nation Branding was established but the term ‘nation branding’ is still unfamiliar for many,” said Lee Bae-yong, chair of the Presidential Council on National Branding, at a press conference on Thursday.

“Every time I visit other countries, I realize how much Korea’s national prestige has soared. In contrast with appraisals from other countries, however, Koreans do not seem to realize what we have. The convention will contribute on introducing what we have and what we should promote to the world.”

The exhibition will look at hallyu led by the K-pop and Korean drama craze; introduce the roots of the trend by looking back on Korean traditional culture and relics; and present what Korea’s representative big and small companies and local governments have to offer ― not in a manner to promote their products but to tell human stories of the founders and the underlying spirit.

The international conference will be held for two days from Aug. 25. Participants include brand strategy expert David Aaker, professor emeritus at the Haas School of Business of the University of California, Berkeley, who will give a keynote speech on “National Branding ― Why and How”; Maxime Paquet, head of the France-based Korean culture society Korean Connection, who will talk about “The Korean Wave Mania in Paris”; and Sohn Hye-won, creative director at CROSSPOINT who will discuss “Inheritance and Continuous Growth of Intangible Cultural Heritage.”

Sports stars including weightlifting champion Jang Mi-ran and speed skate gold medalist Lee Seung-hoon will participate as speakers as well.

As for cultural events, traditional dance and music performance teams as well as K-pop groups like f(x) will pep up the convention.

The convention will be held annually, said Lee, and the content and venue will vary depending on the results of this one.

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By Park Min-young (