South Korea, the Country With the Most Creative Industry in the World in 2021

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South Korea, the Country With the Most Creative Industry in the World in 2021

South Korea, a country famous for its culture, namely K-Pop or Korean Pop. K-Pop or commonly called Hallyu itself began to attract the eyes of the world in 1992 where at that time the debut appearance of the Seo Taiji and Boys group gave a new color to the flow of rap music, rock, and techno. Then Hallyu entered the international world like China in the 2000s, and began to spread to Southeast Asia, then the United States (US) to Europe. Not only music, many other cultures such as food, travel, language, fashion, and many more also attract the attention of many people around the world. This is the creative industry in the country.

However, do you know? It turns out that this year, 2021 to be exact, South Korea has been named the first country in the world with the most creative economy, based on a survey from the Bloomberg Innovation Index. Then followed by Singapore in second place, in third place was Switzerland, Germany in fourth, and Sweden in fifth. 

The Bloomberg Innovation Index surveys the 60 most innovative countries in the world. The index’s assessment criteria include research and development expenditures as a percentage of GDP, productivity, patent activity, concentration of high-tech enterprises and efficiency of higher education.

South Korea, which ranks top in patents with a total value of 91.31, boasts a world-class manufacturing portfolio populated by global brands such as Samsung, Hyundai, LG and SK. Also by sector, the country is a global leader in semiconductors, digital devices and vessels, and a significant player in automotive, consumer electronics, petrochemicals, and even popular culture products.

Its sophisticated, up-to-date and extensive infrastructure is utilized by highly educated and technology-friendly residents. They also became the first country to roll out 5G wireless networks across the country and are home to a surging startup world fueled by dynamic liquidity.

Umar Hadi, Indonesian Ambassador to South Korea, said that there are three important factors that form the foundation for the rise of South Korea’s creative industry. These three factors quickly made them developed countries, whereas in the past Indonesia and South Korea were both poor countries.

Curious about what factors make the industry in this country grow rapidly? Check out the article below!

South Korea

South Korea National Flag

The Republic of Korea or commonly known as South Korea is a country in East Asia which covers the southern part of the Korean Peninsula. To the north, the Republic of Korea is bordered by North Korea, (where the two were united as a country until 1948, but are now separate and independent). The Yellow Sea is to the west, Japan is across the Sea of ​​Japan (called the “East Sea” by Koreans) and the Korean Strait is to the southeast. The country is known as Hanguk by South Koreans. The capital city of South Korea is Seoul.

With a per capita income of 31,500 US dollars and a total population of 51.78 million, making them the 27th most populous country in the world in 2020. This country has also earned the nickname “Ginseng Country” because it produces the best quality ginseng in the world.

Creative Industry


Creative industry is the process of creation, creativity, and ideas from a person or group of people who can produce a work, without exploiting natural resources, and can be used as economic products that produce. The resulting creativity must be able to open up the jobs needed.

The creative industry itself is divided into 18 sub-sectors, namely (1) animation; (2) architecture; (3) design; (4) photography; (5) music; (6) crafts; (7) culinary; (8) Fashion; (9) research and development; (10) publishing; (11) cinema; (12) advertising; (13) interactive games; (14) performing arts; (15) fine arts; (16) information technology; (17) television and radio; and (18) video.

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The factors that cause South Korea to become the first country with the most creative industry

Political reform

Pro-Democracy Movement by Korean Protesters

The first factor is political reform South Korea circa 1987-1988. Previously, South Korea was bound by authorizations that prevented many people from freely expressing themselves. However, after the new constitution, artists and creators can freely develop their ideas.

Democratization is making a new constitution about guaranteeing freedom of expression. Before democracy, everything was censored, restricted, and had to follow government policies. However, after the reformation, freedom of work is guaranteed by the constitution so that artists, filmmakers, songwriters, poets, novelists have a new open energy. This is the beginning of the birth of K-Pop.

Economic reform

The struggle against Neoliberalism

The second factor was the economic reforms that took place several years earlier than the political reforms. This can be seen from the process of economic openness from a company-led capitalism system to market-based capitalism. As the world witnessed, South Korea experienced its highest economic boom in the 1980s. It is no wonder that South Korea is the world’s largest producer of semiconductors, the world’s largest producer of lithium batteries, has the world’s largest oil refinery even though it has no oil resources, and has the world’s largest tanker.

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Social reform

Buddha’s birthday celebration in Seoul

The third factor is socio-cultural reform against foreign influences. After the 1980s, the people of South Korea experienced a change in attitude in responding to the socio-culture of their own country in the international world which began because of the vision of the initiators of the creative industry.

An example of this change in attitude is the change in the educational goals of art schools in Korea, which initially wanted to maintain and introduce art in their country, turned into superior Korean culture and mastered world cultural trends.

Those are some of the reasons why South Korea can become the first country with a creative industry in 2021 and catch up with the economy. It’s also not surprising that at this time K-Pop is very global and many people are interested in their culture. There are even some people who add to their wishlist in life to be able to visit Korea and meet their idol at least once in their life.

How about you Comuniti’s friends?? Have you defended your own culture and introduced it to the outside world? Whatever the answer, may we all always be proud of our own culture and continue to maintain its sustainability because every culture has its own uniqueness that cannot be replaced by other cultures. That’s all from this article and see you next time. Annyeong!


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