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News | Sept. 1, 2021

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Korea Institute of Civil Engineering and Building Technology (KICT) sign Implementing Arrangement to further develop technical cooperation

By Chong Yun Kim Far East District

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Pacific Ocean Division (POD) and Far East District (FED) held an Implementing Arrangement (IA) signing ceremony with the Korea Institute of Civil Engineering and Building Technology (KICT) at the FED Headquarters, Aug. 27.

The purpose of the IA is to establish a mutual partnering framework, that governs collaborative activities between KICT and USACE. This partnership will undertake initiatives in construction technology, standards, infrastructure management & sustainment, and related topics.

Dr. Kim Byung-suk, President of KICT, and senior leaders from KICT had an introductory meeting with Brig. Gen. Kirk Gibbs, USACE POD commander, followed by a tour of the District’s Geotechnical and Environmental Engineering Branch laboratories.

The KICT, founded in June 1983, is the Republic of Korea’s only government-funded construction technology research institute. KICT aims to contribute to the development of the construction industry; improvement of quality of life; and national economic and social development, through the advancement of source technologies, and the spread of achievements in the field of construction and land management.

“I’m honored to represent USACE in formalizing our growing relationship with KICT,” said Gibbs, during the ceremony. “This really opens doors for opportunities in scientific and technical cooperation and underscores the importance of joint research and development.

This high-level engagement was designed to enhance mutual understanding between the two agencies and discuss technical exchanges and cooperation, reinforcing the commitment to the U.S.-Republic of Korea partnership.

“With the signing of this IA as a starting point, I expect that the two organizations will cooperate on pending issues and forge partnerships to build a mutually-developing relationship that achieves the goals of each agency,” said Dr. Kim.

USACE and KICT will continue to discuss mutually beneficial research projects and explore possibilities to conduct exchanges between their researchers and scientists.

“The saying of ‘Katchi Kapshida,’ (We Go Together) is very appropriate in our relationship,” added Gibbs. “It really encapsulates everything the ROK and the U.S. does together as friends and partners.

“Sharing our research on how to better infrastructure development, construction technology, and other engineering research and development can only benefit our two nations’ goals. I look forward to our teams linking with each other and identifying when, where and how USACE and KICT will advance together,” said Gibbs.