In the midst of the global coronavirus pandemic, how do you reach out to a diverse global community of environmental and sustainability researchers with an inspiring message to continue their crucial studies in plastic pollution despite the current challenges? That was the problem that Korea University sought to address in its partnership with Nature Portfolio.
Korea University is a prestigious academic institution with campuses in the Korean cities of Seoul and Sejong. Equipped with state-of-the-art research facilities and boasting a track record of innovative research, the university is considered a leading research institution in Asia and the world. Research at the university is helping tackle some of the world’s major challenges including climate change, environmental degradation, and chronic disease.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the university’s plans for a breakout session at an international conference were canceled.
Working with Nature Portfolio to adapt their conference sessions to a virtual format, the forum organizer, Prof. Yong Sik Ok, worked extensively with Nature journals editors to adjust the agenda and invite new speakers.
The half-day virtual forum featured four sessions with leading experts in plastic pollution, covering the impact of plastics in the oceans and on the land, as well as regulatory issues and a case study from Asia. The forum was moderated by editors from two Nature Portfolio journals and hosted by faculty members from Korea University.
The director of Korea University’s Ojeong Resilience Research Institute, Prof. Lee, Woo Kyun in introducing the event said:
“With respect to pursuing our university’s vision on UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), we organized this forum to highlight the impact of plastic pollution on society as well as present solutions to mitigate the damage. It is the first online forum held by Nature in Korea and we are delighted to welcome prestigious scholars in this field from across the world including editors from Nature.”
Promotion of the forum targeted Nature Portfolio’s global audience of sustainability science researchers through social media, display adverts on Nature Portfolio journals, and direct emails. These efforts were augmented by a local campaign led by Korea University’s public relations department.