The University of Bath Institute for Policy Research (IPR) has been awarded funding from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) for a new collaborative project with the Institute of Welfare State Research (IWSR) at Yonsei University, South Korea.

The collaboration, which will consist of several conferences and workshops as well as a series of fellowships, seeks to explore social security, the labour market and public health in the UK and South Korea, and lessons for post-pandemic recovery and reform.

Building on the IPR’s relationship with Yonsei University, colleagues across the IPR, IWSR, Dongguk University and the Gyeonggi Research Institute will work together to develop research into seven key areas, including: lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic for welfare state reform; automation, technology, employment and the labour share; Universal Basic Income; the social investment state in the UK and Korea; post-compulsory education and the future of the labour market; pensions and social care reform; and strengthening resilience to pandemics.

In addition to the academic partnership, and building on the IPR’s annual Visiting Fellowship Scheme with South Korean civil servants, the collaborative project will also include knowledge exchange activities with various government departments and think tanks – such as the Ministry of Employment and Labour – and develop networks and capabilities for early career researchers.