BMS Interview: Prof. Jin Won CHO

prof jin won cho, yonsei, mpikg, dana kikicProf. Jin Won Cho has a remarkable scientific career. Currently he serves as President of the Korean Society for Glycoscience and the national representative of IGO. Previously, he received his PhD in Glycobiology from UC Davis in 1993 and completed his postdoctoral studies at the State University of New York, Stony Brook in 1996, before taking over as professor in his alma mater Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea, one of the oldest and most influential universities in the country. But, there is a side of Prof. Cho one cannot easily see, when searching through his online presence: he is a composer, a performer, an enthusiastic karaoke singer  and a great supporter of the young South Korean music scene. "Kite", a song he composed the music and words for, is a famous tune in South Korea performed by Linus, a South Korean college rock band from the 80's. Occasionally, Linus is joined on stage by Prof. Cho, as in this college reunion video from 2009.  Last month, Prof. Seeberger and Prof. Cho met in Seoul, where after a day of glycobiology cooperation talks, both went out for a late night karaoke session. Prof Cho answered 3 questions from our "BMS Nature or Nurture Interview":

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1. Science or Art (is science art)?
The worst scientist is he who is not an artist; the worst artist is he who is not a scientist – Armand Trousseau, 1801~1867
2. Theory or Application (science as a hermeneutic discipline or as a medical, political, economic force?)
If science should only be conducted to develop something, it would be a big burden on my shoulder. Science is my hobby and journey to explore forbidden empire.
3. Can scientific knowledge stay morally neutral?
I hope that all scientific knowledge should be used by human not by unhuman.

 

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