What South Korea Teaches the World About Fighting COVID-19


Thursday, October 15, 2020, 6:00pm to 7:00pm


Online Event (Zoom)

SBS Seminar; co-sponsored by the Harvard University Asia Center, COVID in Asia Series, and the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute

Doug J. Chung
MBA Class of 1962 Associate Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School

Doug J. Chung is the MBA Class of 1962 Associate Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. He teaches Sales Management & Strategy in the second year MBA Elective Curriculum and chairs the Executive Education program, Managing Sales Teams and Distribution Channels. He has previously taught in various Executive Education programs at the Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School.

Professor Chung focuses his research primarily on sales strategy, sales force management and incentive compensation. He has worked with firms worldwide to develop effective employee incentive compensation systems and his work has been published in various academic journals.

Professor Chung earned his Ph.D. in management at Yale University, where he also earned an M.A. and M.Phil. in management. He was the finalist for the 2014 John D. C. Little Award, the 2015 Frank M. Bass Award, and the 2020 Gary L. Lilien Practice Prize. He was selected as a 2017 MSI Young Scholar by the Marketing Science Institute. Professor Chung serves on the editorial board at major academic journals, including Marketing ScienceJournal of Marketing Research, and the International Journal of Research in Marketing. He currently serves as a Senior Advisor for McKinsey & Company’s sales and marketing practices. He completed his undergraduate studies at Korea University. Prior to pursuing a career in academics, Professor Chung served as a platoon commander in the South Korean Special Warfare Command.

In a world devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Republic of Korea (South Korea) has been able to effectively combat the disease without ever imposing a full lockdown of its economy. How did the country accomplish its success?

South Korea initially had the largest number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 outside of China, but new cases have decreased sharply since then. As of October 12, South Korea reported 24,703 cumulative cases and 433 deaths, which dwarfs those reported by other developed countries. Even taking into account the country’s population, South Korea’s number of cases per capita is substantially lower than those of other countries. The United States (with more than 8 million cumulative cases) has 24,386 cases per million citizens whereas South Korea has 478 cases per million.

This talk will go through the details of how South Korea was able to control Covid-19 and what policy makers and business leaders can learn from it.

Chaired by Sun Joo Kim, Harvard-Yenching Professor of Korean History; Director, Korea Institute, Harvard University

To attend this event online, we ask that you please register via the following link:

As we approach the event date, you will receive a reminder email with the Zoom link.

Generously supported by the SBS Research Fund at the Korea Institute, Harvard University