KAIST has been an R&D powerhouse and the gateway to innovations in Korea. Basic and applied research at KAIST drove the industrialization of Korea and led the nation to emerge as one of the global economic powers. KAIST is now scaling up new research initiatives to become a ‘first mover,’ whose innovations will make a huge difference to the people all over the world.

KAIST Institute (KI)

The KAIST Institute is the hub of open innovation and inter- and multidisciplinary research. KI pursues groundbreaking research projects that will change the world by solving problems through an integrated approach that considers science, engineering, and governance measures. KI aims for innovative and futuristic convergence research among its six research institutes and three centers.

KI is comprised of six research institutes in the fields of BioCentury, IT Convergence, Robotics, NanoCentury, Health Science and Technology and AI. There are also three additional research centers: I-Space, the Saudi Aramco-KAIST CO2 Management Center, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution Intelligence Center (FIRIC)), which performs trends analysis and predictions in relation to major policies, governance, and technology in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Cross-Generation Collaborative Labs

KAIST pairs senior and junior faculty members who will continue the senior scholar’s academic legacy and achievements even after the senior researcher retires. The labs will be funded for five years, and the funding will be extended if necessary. Currently, six labs have been selected for this research drive introduced in 2018 under the Vision 2031 Innovation Initiatives.

Global Singularity Research Projects

KAIST takes on singularity research that will open a new horizon for humanity. These global collaborative R&D projects are working to solve the most intriguing global challenges in collaboration with private and public entities around the world. Every year, the two most noteworthy projects will be awarded block funding for up to 10 years.

Singularity Professor

A Singularity Professorship is awarded to unusual faculty members who seek out the most intriguing academic disciplines with exceptional scholarship and unrivaled creativity. Every year, KAIST selects two or three professors for this special track with full-scale research funding for 10 years. Singularity Professors are selected either from existing faculty members or those newly recruited exclusively for this track.

Research Culture at KAIST

KAIST strongly encourages the most challenging and improbable researches, the ones for which prevailing science does not yet have a concept to understand. KAIST selects and supports creative and sometimes preposterous research ideas that need mid- and long-term studies, ones that need to form theories and newly emerging research topics, and ones that will not be published in journals despite their scientific significance.

KAIST Analysis Center for Research Advancement (KARA)

State-of-the-art facilities at KARA provide accurate data and experiment analysis for helping research create meaningful results. The center is open to other universities, research institutes, startups, and SMEs.

KAIST Laboratory Animal Resource Center (KAIST LARC)

The LARC is committed to providing quality animal husbandry and veterinary care to support biomedical education and research. The center promotes best and responsible practices for animal experimentation.

Centers, Institutes, and Labs

Listed here are the KAIST research centers, institutes, and labs where research breakthroughs are taking place.

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University-Industry Cooperation

Institute of Technology Value Creation

In collaboration with global partners, KAIST aims to create new knowledge and technological value that will contribute to the global economy and drive new economic growth engines. The Technology Commercialization Center systemically supports startups at every step to help them with commercialization and finding the right business partners.

KAIST Advisors on Materials and Parts (KAMP)

KAIST Advisors on Materials and Parts is composed of 100 faculty members who advise SMEs in the fields of materials, parts, and equipment to help them develop their own technological edge. These fields are a crucial component for Korea’s key industries, which include semiconductors, energy, and automobiles. KAMP supports the development of 159 key technologies to respond to the SMEs’ technological challenges for advancing their competitiveness.

Startups and Entrepreneurship

Startup KAIST

Startup KAIST aims to invigorate entrepreneurship on campus, create an ecosystem in which startups can thrive, and help startups go abroad. To this end, Startup KAIST provides the KAIST community with workspaces as well as training on practical business skills.


K-School is a unique program for integrating entrepreneurship into KAIST’s specialized engineering curriculum. K-School provides undergraduates with theoretical education on entrepreneurship and business under a minor in science-based entrepreneurship. To instill an entrepreneurial spirit in all KAIST students, it offers educational programs and seminars through mandatory general courses and activity units.