|| > KOCER Overview
The Korea Center for City and Environment Research (KOCER) is a
non-profit and independent research organization founded in October 1994.
KOCER attends to scientific analysis of urban issues
and finding their reasonable solutions,
especially focusing on the problems of the grassroots.
So KOCER may well be concerned with theoretical research on practical issues
on the one hand, and address social actions and movements at the same time.
The KOCER was formed by the merging of the Urban Poor Research Institute (UPRI)
with the Korean Space and Environment Research Association(KSERA) in 1994.
In 1985 the UPRI was founded by John. Daly, a Catholic priest and Jei Jung-Gu,
a distinguished advocate of the poor and later an Assemblyman, who passed away from cancer in 1999.
At the time the UPRI tried to provide information and strategies which organizers involved in
anti-eviction struggle would be in need of. The UPRI has organized the urban poor, conducted
conferences, and published several reports.
To strengthen its professional research capabilities and its alliances with civil society movement
organizations, the UPRI merged with the KSERA.
The KSERA was organized by a group of university professors and graduate students who were
interested in human settlement issues in general. They were mainly academics, but with an interest
in urban and regional problems, so they felt the need for more contact with the grassroots. On the
other hand, the UPRI was mainly 'activists' who increasingly felt the need for more professional
research. Thus, this joining of the two teams has strengthened both sides.
To analyze urban problems including low-income housing, land use, industry and environmental
pollution To develop progressive policy alternatives to those problems
To advocate grassroots movements by carrying out programs for community leaders and organizers
who work with the urban poor.
Researches on low-income housing and housing welfare, employment relations and workers' living
conditions, urban pollution and community organization movements, etc..
Publishing reports and books as results of analyzing problems and seeking the policy alternatives.
Holding forums or symposiums to publicize the outcomes of our researches or to advocate the
grassroots Training programs or workshops for the community leaders and organizers who work
with the urban poor.
Providing information and alternative policies for people's organizations which struggle for their due rights.
Year of Foundation : November 1994. (But this is the time when the Urban Poor Research Institute
(UPRI) and the Korean Space and Environment Research Association(KSERA) merged into the
KOCER, and the KOCER dates back to 1985.)
The Number of full-time Staff : 5
The Number of Members : 200
Constituency : Korea overall