Mr. Gwang-Jo Kim

Director of UNESCO Regional Bureau for Education in Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok


Born in the Republic of Korea, Dr. Kim holds a Bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from Korea University (1978), and a Master’s degree (1984) and a Ph.D. (1994) in Education from Harvard University.

Dr. Kim began his senior responsibilities in Korea, where he advised and assisted former President Young Sam Kim in the fields of education and social policy (1995–1997). He played a key role in the planning of the nationwide education reform initiative, entitled “531 Education Reform”, aimed at restructuring the entire Korean education system.

Between 2001 and 2004, Dr. Kim was affiliated with the World Bank as Senior Education Specialist at its Headquarters in Washington, D.C. 

In 2004, Dr. Kim was appointed Director-General of the Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development (MOEHRD) in Korea where he led and prepared cross-ministerial human resources development policies, i.e., the Five Year National Human Resources Development Plan. From 2005 to 2008, Dr. Kim was Deputy-Minister of Education and Human Resources Development of the Republic of Korea. He coordinated cross-ministerial human resources development policy initiatives and initiated and launched the Global Human Resources Forum in Seoul in 2006. 

Dr. Kim is a member of various professional associations on education policy, finance and economics, has published works in his area of expertise on education, and has represented the South Korean government at various ministerial-level meetings.

In 2009, Dr. Kim was appointed Director of the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Education in Asia-Pacific, as well as UNESCO Representative to Thailand, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Singapore.