> Introduction > Greeting

Welcome to The Society for East Sea website.
I sincerely appreciate your continued concern and support for the activities of the Society for East Sea.

The Society for East Sea was established in 1994 with the mission of promoting the joint use of the name
“East Sea” (“Donghae” in Korean) – the sea situated between the Korean Peninsula and
the Japanese archipelago (Nihon Retto) – and “the Sea of Japan” in the international community.
As is well known, the name of “East Sea” had been used for more than 2,000 years
since it was mentioned in the Stele of King Gwanggaeto the Great of the Goguryeo Kingdom.

When the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) published the international standard material on the names and the boundaries of the seas in 1929 during the Japanese colonial period, “East Sea” was replaced by “the Sea of Japan.” Right after South Korea was admitted to the United Nations (UN) in 1991, the government has called for the joint use of “East Sea” and “the Sea of Japan” in the international community. The Society for East Sea, on its side, has been working to help accomplish the goal from the perspective of an expert organization.

The year 2017 marks the 23rd anniversary of the foundation of the Society for East Sea. The Society for East Sea has carried out international activities including the international seminars both at home and mostly abroad on the names of the seas, which was possible thanks to the efforts of its first president Kim Jin–Hyun (former Minister of Science and Technology, chairman of World Peace Forum, and advisor of the Society for East Sea) and former presidents Lee Kee–suk (professor emeritus at Seoul National University and advisor for the Society for East Sea) and Park Nohyoung (professor at School of Law at Korea University). At the international seminars, we have explained to the participating foreign experts how the joint use of “East Sea” and “the Sea of Japan” can be justified on one hand, and actively discussed the issues of the names of seas on the other hand, thereby contributing a lot, both academically and practically, to the study of sea names. Thanks to the efforts of the Society for East Sea for spearheading the global campaign for the joint use of “East Sea” and “the Sea of Japan” during the past 23 years, an increasing number of world maps, geography textbooks, and international media outlets are using “East Sea” and “the Sea of Japan” at the same time. We are highly proud of the outcome.

The Society for East Sea will continue to accomplish its mission until the day when the joint use of “East Sea” and “the Sea of Japan” is firmly established on the world stage. I offer my sincere gratitude not only to the members of the board of directors at the Society for East Sea but also to the organizations and dignitaries who have supported our activities during the past 23 years. I also ask you to support and sponsor the activities of the Society for East Sea aimed at promoting the joint use of “East Sea” and “the Sea of Japan” overseas.

Thank you very much.
2017. 4

CHOO Sungjae
President
The Society for East Sea