The education ministry plans to hand over to local governments access to a budget of more than two trillion won for providing financial support to universities from 2025. That’s around half of the ministry’s budget earmarked for projects supporting universities this year.
The ministry said on Wednesday that officials briefed President Yoon Suk Yeol on the so-called “Regional Innovation System and Education(RISE)” project during the first meeting of a national council on nurturing talents at the Kumoh National Institute of Technology in Gumi, North Gyeongsang Province.
Currently, the education ministry selects universities when pursuing certain projects and provides them with financial assistance. However, starting from 2025, 17 local governments will choose the schools they deem need nurturing and offer support as part of efforts to find more effective ways to create schools with more competitive power.
The government’s latest plan also comes amid concerns that the current support system may not be effective in addressing challenges faced by rural areas and helping regional universities suffering from a decline in the school age population.
Also on Wednesday, the education ministry announced plans to foster what it called “glocal” universities, referring to schools that have top class specialized fields. Such schools will be tasked with leading regional development and growth of other universities in their regions.
The ministry plans to select roughly 30 such schools by 2027, including around ten this year, and provide them with needed support.