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Did you go to Expo 2012?

yeosu expo korea south korea 2012

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#1 Jeffrey Ford

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 07:06 AM

I'm just curious to know how many people on this site had an opportunity, or desire, to go to Expo 2012 in Yeosu, South Korea this year?

#2 worldsfairent

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 09:11 AM

Definitely had the desire (after being at Expo 2010) but alas, this year's work schedule prevented me from making it to Yeosu. Really appreciate all the pictures you've posted, though.
Planning on attending Expo 2015 in Milan!

#3 Jeffrey Ford

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 09:30 AM

Thanks, It was a fun little Expo. I plan on going to Expo 2015, if it happens. I fear that problems in the Eurozone could tank the Milan Expo.

#4 Bill Cotter

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 10:20 AM

Anyone know of a source of English language guidebooks from this one?

#5 Jeffrey Ford

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 01:30 PM

I didn't see one over there.

#6 Jim

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Posted 31 July 2012 - 07:38 PM

Is that true about Milan? I know Italy's economy is a mess. Is that exposition in trouble?

#7 Jeffrey Ford

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Posted 01 August 2012 - 02:07 PM

I know that last year the BIE warned that their land purchases were behind schedule. And from what I have seen the budget for the Expo, at the time of pitch to the BIE was 4.2 billion Euro. 1.5 billion Euro of that is committed by the Italian government, with 900 million expected to be contributed by the local governments, and 900 million from corporations. The fiscal plan of the Expo also calls for bank financing to cover any gaps. So, I think that a lot depends on what happens to the Euro in the next year or so. If Italian banks have to be bailed out, they are going to be reluctant to loan to an enterprise that is anything but a sure bet. And, if things go south in Italy and the surrounding countries, I think that Expo organizers are going to have to tone down their attendance forecast of 30 million. So, while no one is currently crying out to stop working on the Expo, I fear that it could become a point of political contention. It takes me back to the proposed Expo 96 in Budapest. It started having funding challenges, and then there was a political shift and they axed the Expo as a bold, and very public example, of their seriousness on reigning in costs.

I hope that Expo 2015 happens. I plan to take the family to it. It would be my young son's first Expo. But I won't be surprised if making it happen comes with a funding struggle. And, I won't be surprised if its scale is dialed back a bit to reduce cost.

Another question is United States participation in the Expo if it happens. The political and economic drivers that produced US Pavilions in 2010 and 2012 were, I believe uniquely linked to Asia. My understanding is that the State Department approached US companies and reminded them that Asia represents a huge potential export market for them. China and South Korea are both in the top ten of US trade partners. In recent years the US has exported around 14 to 16 billion dollars worth of goods to Italy. And they usually export around twice that to the US. That keeps Italy out of the top ten trade partners. They may be top 20. However, it is going to be a lot harder to go to a US corporation and say, give us millions of dollars for a USA Pavilion, it's a good investment for your company. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out!

#8 wayofthefuture

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Posted 01 August 2012 - 02:20 PM

I visited the Expo for 2 days in mid-July as part of an around-the-world trip. I spent much of my time in the International Pavilion - we made it to all but 4 national pavilions - and also visited the Marine City/Civilization, Theme/Best Practices, Expo x Expos, NGO, Local Govts, Ports & Shipping, and a few corporate (Samsung, Hyundai, GS Caltex, SK Telecom) Pavilions.

It appears from your pictures in the other thread that I missed out a bit on the Marine Tech. Pavilion and maybe the Climate Pavilion, but with only 2 days I hated to stand in line for an hour and a half for any one pavilion. We lost way too much time to the Samsung Pavilion and tried to avoid the long waits after that. With a 3rd day (and a bit more patience) we probably would have been able to visit the rest of the exhibits minus the aquarium.

This was my first Expo and I hope to visit Milan in 2015. Your concerns are the first I've heard about the Expo's future being uncertain. Assuming it isn't canceled, I think I'll schedule 5-7 days in the area and plan my visit a bit earlier in the event's calendar, before the word gets out.

#9 Jeffrey Ford

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Posted 01 August 2012 - 04:53 PM

It's great that you had a chance to stop at the Expo. I was fortunate to have a media pass as I was working on completing a film about Expos that I have been working on for the past few years. This allowed us to skip all of the lines. That always makes you feel a little guilty as you walk past people who have been in line for hours. However, it is a great way to see more of the fair.

I hope the 2015 Expo happens. I think that it probably will. And I don't wan't to get everyone thinking that it will not. However, I have researched Expos a lot in the past few years. And most events have historically had money problems. Both South Korea and China have pretty full pockets. So I think that recent history has been very kind to the Expo. The last big Expo in Europe was Hannover 2000. That was a fiscal disaster. So I just think that it is something worth watching.

That being said, I'm planning on being there!

#10 worldsfairent

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Posted 05 August 2012 - 06:14 PM

it is going to be a lot harder to go to a US corporation and say, give us millions of dollars for a USA Pavilion, it's a good investment for your company.


Because the theme of Expo 2015 is "Feeding The Planet, Energy For Life," it seems like a unique opportunity for America's biggest food industry corps to rise up in support of a U.S. Pavilion. PEPSICO, COCA COLA, DOLE, GENERAL MILLS, KRAFT-- should all (pardon the pun) plant the seeds for our presence.

#11 Randy Treadway

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Posted 05 August 2012 - 07:12 PM

Packaged foods, perhaps.

I'm thinking more of all those councils-- Almond council, Florida Orange Growers cooperative, Sunkist, California Raisin Growers, etc.
As well as the farm equipment manufacturers like Caterpillar and John Deere.
You know the Planet Earth ride-through at Epcot, that has the tomatoes growing upside down and all that?--- that would be good too.

#12 Jeffrey Ford

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Posted 05 August 2012 - 07:17 PM

I think that the United States food based corporations are only going to be interested in they are selling product into the European market. I think that Caterpillar and John Deere might be good possible donors. However, the big question is oversight and design. Who is going to end up shaping the US message if we have a pavilion at Expo 2015?

#13 memefactory

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 02:21 AM

My wife and I went, then spent another three weeks travelling around Korea. We thought it was a great Expo and Yeosu should be proud of a job well done. Transport to and from the site was great - frequent, free; the grounds were lovely, everything was extremely well organized. Highlights for us included the EDG, the Argentina Pavilion, the France Pavilion (once again, like in 2010, just fantastic design), the Coastal Best Practices area, the Pacific Ocean Joint Pavilion, the Italy Pavilion, the Philippines Pavilion (which was probably the prettiest of them all), the Malaysia Pavilion, the Turkey pavilion, the Denmark Pavilion (super-informative), the Expos Pavilion, and the Sky Tower. There were a few disappointments, mainly when the pavilion was either a) just a film, B) mainly just a shop or c) mainly just a tourism board appeal to travel there, Yes, I am looking at you, Republic of Congo. I understand that Expos are often about cultural exchange but we really appreciated it when a country (or organization) stayed on topic, or at least made an effort in that direction with more than just blue lights and some wavy architectural features. take Monaco - a small country for sure, yet very much on topic and lovely design with interesting information. Same with Brunei. But some countries seemed to feel that the theme of the ocean was just not important and basically just showed tourism films (Mexico, Indonesia, Egypt) or were nothing more than a shop (Cambodia, Vietnam, most of the African countries.) Then there were the weird ones - Australia (an exhibition of a single artist and a sculpture with projections, plus a shop - once again Australia is a disappointment [their Shanghai pavilion in 2010 was shockingly unpleasant]), Israel (a bizarre space with hanging fabric tubes and the barest nod to the fact that they have coastal areas [a shame since their 2010 pavilion was so interesting]), Belgium (what exactly was the design scheme there?) and India (way overly-technical displays that made no sense whatsoever in the space, were impossible to read and digest) come to mind. And, of course, our native USA went for big budget nonsense rather than substance (perhaps because they really aren't committed to the theme at all?) But any shortcomings on the part of individual pavilions was hardly the responsibility of the Yeosu organizers. I don't know who designed the Theme Pavilion and the Big O show, but we found them to be combination of tedious adn infantile (how many times can a child be pulled into a somewhat abstract video and put into danger for no real reason?) Frankly, we would probably never have gone to Korea had it not been for the Expo - we stayed three weeks and had a wonderful time, visiting Boseong, Jeju-do and Seoul . What a pleasant surprise Korea turned out to be! And isn't that, ultimately, one of the goals for host countries? So - great job.

#14 Bill Cotter

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 07:06 AM

Thanks for the report - glad you found us.

#15 blueexpo

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 03:58 PM

I went to the expo in Yeosu for three and half days. I went towards the end of the Expo, so I was not able to contribute to this board regarding the expo. The things I liked most about the expo were the Electronic Digital Gallery, the Big O-Show, and the Samsung Pavilion's multimedia show. It was definitely worth my time attending. I am extremely glad I went.





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