The midsummer rod issue

Happy Easter everyone! Easter is not particularly celebrated in Korea even though about 18 % of the population is Catholics and 45 % are Protestants. In other words, no Easter celebrations for me this year. No Easter eggs, Easter buffet or family time. I will think of you lucky people at home this weekend!

Easter marks about halfway of my stay here in South Korea. I realized today as I was walking to work that I am starting to feel at home here in Korea and at Hanyang University. I am wondering what the coming 3 months have to bring? A few things that I am planning is to experience the south of Korea by traveling to Busan and Jeju Island. I will also go hiking in Seoraksan Naional Park and arrange traditional Swedish midsummer celebrations for my colleagues. I am thinking about alternatives to the midsummer rod so we can dance and sing “små grodorna”.

The midsummer rod is a very important issue to solve. However, I may have some time for my PhD project as well. I am looking forward to learn more about the Korean building design and energy efficiency. I am also hoping to understand the work and the assessment tools used at the Sustainable Building Research Center a bit better. And of course I will work hard on my Fika legacy here at the office.

If you ever get the chance to visit a foreign university for a couple of months, take it! You will not get disappointed, I promise. If you are interested in South Korea and maybe even Hanyang Univeristy, go for it. Here are some issues that Korea is facing where there is a need of competence and technology development;

  • Over consumption of plastic. Trash is piling up on the streets and recycling businesses are losing their money. As a response to this, the Korean Ministry of Environment have decided to increase domestic recycling rate from 34 per cent to 70 per cent by 2030.
  • High energy use and greenhouse gas emissions from buildings. The buildings have poor insulation and are heated by fuels with high climate impact.
  • Renewable energy sources in an urban environment.
  • The work-related stress is hard to not see. In addition the car is the Koreans best friend. Combined with a diet high on carbohydrates can become lethal in the future.

Maybe this can give you some ideas for your PhD project or your master thesis.

If you have any questions about being a visiting scholar at a foreign university, do not hesitate to contact me. I will try to answer your questions to best of my ability.

With that I would like to thank you for reading my blog posts over the last two weeks. I would also like to wish you happy Easter and a nice holiday!

Regards Helena Nydahl

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