Global Essay Competition for Seoul Conference on Cyberspace 2013.

Submission Deadline: 12 July 2013

Global Essay Competition for Seoul Conference on Cyberspace 2013 is a special competition, co-hosted by Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Korea Information Society Development Institute (KISDI), and Center for International Studies of Yonsei University for youth aged from 18 to 32 across the world. The event forms a crucial part of the Seoul Conference on Cyberspace 2013 (SeoulCyber2013); the awards ceremony will be held at SeoulCyber 2013 Youth Forum scheduled on September 2, 2013 at the Yonsei University, Korea.

The aims of the competition are twofold: firstly, to encourage ambitious and talented students all over the world to demonstrate their own ideas on a set of ongoing cyberspace issues; and secondly, to foster their capacities on the purpose of coping with a wide variety of (inter)national cyber threats.


Candidates are invited to submit an essay of between 1,500 and 2,000 words (excluding footnotes and references) on one of the three questions below.

The example list of questions for the competition is as follows.

Internet as an engine for
economic growth(economic growth and social/cultural benefits)
  • Over the last couple of decades, internet has been regarded as a core impetus for (inter)national economic growth. In the age of economic recession in particular, many experts, ranging from journalists to academics, even argue that internet economy would catalyse economic regeneration across the globe. On the contrary, there are also criticisms of this argument, which state that internet economic effects have been largely overrated.
    In addition to that, while Internet, as a concrete media based to openness and transparency, has increased social/cultural benefits such as freedom of expression, accessibility to public service, some argue that control on cyberspace should also be accompanied for social stability and security.
  • State which view is supported on the basis of your own argumentation and empirical evidence.
Securing yourself from
cyber threats(cybersecurity)
  • One of the most urgent issues on cyberspace is to make it safer and securer. It is a characteristic paradox indeed that development of cutting-edge information technologies leads to that of malignant ones. In other words, in a heyday of digital technology, our privacy is threatened to the utmost. Additionally, cyberspace is also a potential domain for conflict. Many states and non-state actors including proxies are becoming threats to cyber international stability by developing and incorporating cyber capabilities.
  • Provide a well-structured explanation on how severe the cyber threats are nowadays, and suggest priorities to combat these threats.
Towards a shared prosperity(capacity building)
  • As widely known, enormous economic and cultural benefits reaped through recent development of information technologies tend to concentrate on a group of wealthy nations or groups. Even in advanced economies, a huge amount of population, such as disabled, elderly, and low-income families, has been excluded from these benefits.
  • Discuss how to reduce a gap between the advantaged and the disadvantaged in the current digital age. Provide a clear argument and support this with relevant examples.


You may choose another topic rather than stated above among those three themes: economic growth and social/cultural benefits, cybersecurity(including cybercrime and international security), capacity building.

You may choose another topic rather than stated above among those three themes: economic growth and social/cultural benefits, cybersecurity(including cybercrime and international security), capacity building.

How to Write?

Candidates may make up a team of one to three members, and choose one of the three questions provided above to collaborate on delivering a valid answer in both logical and empirical senses. Successful teams are qualified for Panel Discussion at the Youth Forum where they compete to win the opportunity to deliver a speech at SeoulCyber2013.

How to submit?

Submissions must be received by the deadline of 12 July(email entry to [email protected]). Those intending to apply should also complete an application form which is to be included with the submission. Results will be announced by the end of July.

What benefits/privileges to be expected?

Awards winners are given benefits as follows:

1st(1 team)
  • MOFA Minister Awards & KRW 1,500,000
2nd(2 teams)
  • KISDI President Awards & KRW 1,000,000
3rd(3 teams)
  • Head of Seoul Conference Preparatory Secretariat Awards & KRW 500,000
Runners-up(3 teams)
  • KRW 300,000

Awards winners also earn the distinction of joining Panel Discussion at Youth Forum. Based upon their own argumentations in the essays, Awards winners are invited to lead Panel Discussion, which includes three divisions (Economic Growth, Cyber Security, and Capacity Building).

Each division selects the most successful group, ‘The Best Delegation’, to be sent over to SeoulCyber 2013. The Best Delegations ? three groups selected from each of the three divisions ? have the honour of delivering their speeches at the ‘Joint Plenary with Youth Forum’ on October 17.

The Korean government will sponsor travel expense of awards winners at the essay competition; a round trip air ticket and two nights’ hotel accommodation for each team (up to two members). The three Best Delegations will also be sponsored to participate in the SeoulCyber2013.


The competition is open to any university students and non-students alike aged from 18 to 32 (born between 1981 and 1995).

The essay must be the sole creation and original work of the entrant. The essay must not have been submitted to any other essay competition in this and previous years. Any form of plagiarism will result in automatic disqualification.

All the winning essays become the property of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and will not be returned.

Essay must be submitted online in doc/docx and pdf formats.

The secretariat has the right to provide contest deadline extensions, and the number of prize winners may change when deemed appropriate.

It is anticipated that the prizewinners will be announced in July and notified via email. The prize will be presented at the Auditorium of the Yonsei University (, Korea on September 2, 2013.


For more information, contact KISDI at +82 (0)2 570 4246,


    • @Hassan: The Application Form Link is now working. there was an error in the link. The Application Form has also been sent to your inbox. Thanks for pointing it out..All the Best.

    • @Sephen: The Application Form as now been uploaded on OFA instead of through the Cyberspace 2013 webpage.It is now working…You can send it as microsoft word form. Apologies for the Inconveniences. All the Best.


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