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2017-08 31

[Academics][Researcher of the Month] What Makes People Pro-Environment? (1)

“Whenever I go on a trip or big festivals, I always worry about all the trashes people throw away. It’s just too much.” Professor Hyun Sung-hyup of the Division of Tourism recently published his paper, "Fostering customers’ pro-environmental behavior at museum". The paper thoroughly investigates the affective and cognitive factors of individuals visiting museums and analyzes which factor has the most impact on their pro-environmental intentions. Hyun emphasized that most people are very environmentally friendly in their house. They recycle well, try not to waste food or water. However, the point is that the very same people behave entirely differently from the moment they leave their house. Trashes are disposed not separately, which then has to be combusted, letting carbon into the air. Tissues, water, food and all kinds of resources are wasted. Hyun wondered what is behind the people’s paradoxical behavior. He also wanted to figure out what needs to be triggered in order to resolve such paradox and to motivate eco-friendly behavior from the general public. A table showing relations of each factor and their effects (Photo courtesy of Hyun) Over the course of a year, Hyun went to a broad range of museums which deal with themes like art, war, and tradition to interview, survey and observe the visitors. From the data collected from 321 tourists, he ran statistical analysis simulation program to construct a conceptual framework that can predict people’s behavior in public spaces. He also sought for professional advice from other fields such as environmental specialists or professors in engineering for further insight. Based on his field research with dozens and hundreds of related papers he studied, Hyun found out that ‘Environmental Knowledge (EK)’ out of five cognitive factors, was the most significant factor in determining one’s environmentally responsible decision-making process. Hyun is explaining the process of his research. Hyun asserted that environmental education on a regular basis is essential. People with more professional knowledge on the vulnerability of the environment or the impact of their action is more inclined to show consistent behavior both in and outside of their home. "It seems like a lot of people lack education regarding the environment in both public and private sectors," said Hyun. Lamenting at such reality, Hyun wishes environmental education to be part of the public education curriculum in the near future. When asked what inspired him to become a researcher in Tourism, Hyun smiled and answered that his professors during college years influenced him a lot. “Hanyang University offers the best curriculum on Tourism, with respectful professors. I always looked up to them.” Hyun said he decided to study further because there are so much intriguing topics to research in the field of Tourism. He encourages future researchers in the field to boldly try out, because tourism is very future oriented, interdisciplinary and economically significant field of study. Hyun himself plans to vigorously research further on issues related with environment and tourism. “Researching while lecturing, mentoring and living personal life is tough but I still enjoy it,” said Hyun, with affection to his work. Kim So-yun dash070@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Choi Min-ju

2017-08 22

[Academics]Beyond the Matter of Life and Death

Most people do not enjoy postoperative scars, especially on the visible parts of their body. Professor Tae Kyung of Department of Medicine recently reported the outcomes of newly developed operation method in his paper “Functional and cosmetic outcomes of robot-assisted neck dissection by a postauricular facelift approach for head and neck cancer”. As from the title Tae’s research compared surgical outcomes of both conventional neck dissection and his new facelift approach, which takes cosmetic aspects of the patients into account. “Nowadays, it is more than just life and death. Quality of life after the operation is also important.” (Photo courtesy of Tae) In the case of patients with head and neck cancer, cancer cell often spreads to the lymph node of cervical (neck) area. The conventional surgical method to treat the lymph node metastasis is to give vertical and transverse cervical incision (cut), which leaves permanent mark in the patient’s neck. As always having interest in plastic surgery – which is part of Otolaryngology (Head and Neck Surgery) – Tae concerned for postoperative quality of life. Therefore, he took the facelift approach which is still mostly used for cosmetic purposes, especially to unwrinkle one’s face. This way, the scar is left in the back side of the patient’s ear alongside the hairline, which is significantly less visible. The paper “Functional and cosmetic outcomes of robot-assisted neck dissection by a postauricular facelift approach for head and neck cancer” specifically reports the postoperative outcomes of the revolutionary implication as short as one day after the surgery to as long as 12 months. From 2013 Tae and his co-researchers collected data of 113 patients who underwent unilateral neck dissection both through the particular approach and the conventional approach. As a result, the team led by Tae was able to compare the functional and cosmetic outcomes which proved that Tae’s method is advantageous. Namely, patients suffered from less neck edema (swelling of neck) and sensory loss. Cosmetically patients reported significantly lower satisfaction scores. (Note that the higher the satisfaction is, the lower the scores are.) Both neck edema and sensory loss is lower in the robotic procedure, as shown in the tables. (Photo courtesy of Tae) Another specialty of Tae’s method of operation is that it requires robotic assist called Da Vinci robot because the operation makes a very thin tunnel inside the neck, making it physically impossible for the surgeons otherwise. Tae, as one of the first person in the world to conduct robotic neck dissection wanted to further develop the method and evaluate it. This report is one of his efforts trying to keep evaluating and improving his new surgical method. “It is still early to report the cure rate of cancer through this method, but now we know about the postoperative sensory loss, motion limitations, and the satisfaction of patients through this research,” said Tae. Tae also struggles to improve Otolaryngology in Korea and Asia. He mentioned that he chose to become head and neck surgeon because the area was less developed and researched at that time, and that challenged him. Now he is a general secretary of Asia Pacific Society of Thyroid Surgery which he founded, wishing well for the future of the field. “I wish my students to improve Korea as much to be the leading country in Otolaryngology and become global leaders.” Kim So-yun dash070@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Choi Min-ju