Light Industry Science (경공업과학 / Kyonggongop Kwahak)

Light Industry Science
경공업과학 / Kyonggongop Kwahak
Translation and backgrounder by Stephen Mercado

A quarterly journal covering developments in specific light industries and across the sector, published by the Science and Encyclopedia Publishing House.

Cover of Light Industry Science (계량 및 규격화 / Kyeryang mit Kyugyokhwa), no. 4 (2022).

Journal Title: The journal title has various renderings. Light Industry Science is the title in English. Its name transliterated in a simplified version of the standard McCune-Reischauer (M-R) transliteration system and the actual title in Korean are listed above. Its full M-R transliteration, as used in catalogs of the Library of Congress and other major libraries, is Kyŏnggongŏp kwahak. In the English version of the journal’s table of contents, the transliteration, rendered in all caps, is KYONGKONGOBKWAHAK. Below it appears between parentheses the English version: (Light Industry Science). Elsewhere in Pyongyang media, the journal’s title is transliterated as Kyonggongop Gwahak.

Author Information: Editorials and anecdotes of the Revolution (혁명 일화) are unsigned. Articles in the sections “Research Papers” and “Research Data” show author names but lack other information common to science papers, such as academic or professional affiliation, academic titles, areas of research or author biography. The journal’s title suggests that authors may be affiliated with the Light Industry Branch of the State Academy of Sciences and/or related university departments.

Subject Matter: The articles have to do with various light industries, such as food and textiles, or such general issues in light industry as quality control.

References: Most articles end with between one and three references to other scientific works. Domestic citations are to journal articles and monographs in light industry and related fields. Cited periodicals include 금속공업 (Metal Industry), 식료공업 (Food Industry), and 나노과학기술 (Nano Science and Technology). Foreign citations are numerous. Chinese references seem particularly common, but many articles also cite works from the United States, Europe, Japan and Russia. References are to both specialist and popular works, such as Sid Kemp’s Project Management Demystified (McGraw-Hill, 2004).

Sections: Each issue comprises a front cover; an unnumbered page with a framed quotation of one of the three generations of the Kim family; a table of contents (TOC) in Korean; the articles; a TOC in English; the publishing information; and the back cover. Regime messages/propaganda appear throughout the journal.

In recent years, the front cover shows a lead quotation over the journal title, under which is the name of the publisher, the issue number and year of issue and the corporate logo. The TOC in Korean starts with two or three items, each either an editorial or an anecdote of the Revolution . There follows some number of articles under the sections “Research Papers” (연구론문) and “Research Data” (연구자료). Some issues may include other sections. Issue 3, 2022, for example, includes after the main two sections another two sections: “Commentary” (해설) and “Legal Commentary” (범무해설). Following the articles is an abbreviated TOC in English; there are no translations for the material following the section “Research Papers,” which is translated as “Original Papers.” Next, there is the publishing information. The back cover, for its part, has included in recent years at the lower right corner the journal’s International Standard Serial Number (ISSN) over a bar code.

A side-by-side comparison of a page of the Korean and English TOCs.

Publisher: The publisher’s name in English is the Science and Encyclopedia Publishing House. It is the Kwahak Paekkwa Sajon Chulpansa in simplified M-R and 과학백과사전출판사 in Korean. The publisher’s name appears in Korean on the journal’s cover and in English on the copyright line on the publishing information page. In addition, the front cover includes the publisher’s logo: a globe, with a representation of the atom imposed at the top and an abbreviated version of the publisher’s Korean name, 백과 (Paekkwa), at the bottom. Prior to Issue 3, 2018, the publisher’s name printed on the front cover was 과학기술출판사 (Kwahak Gisul Chulpansa, the Science and Technology Publishing House). Confusingly, the front cover for the 2016 and 2017 issues, as well as the first two issues of 2018, show the Science and Technology Publishing House name together with the Paekkwa corporate logo.

The publisher publishes an issue each quarter, starting in March, for a total of four issues per year. According to the TOC and publishing information page, Issue 3 (September), 2022 was cumulative issue number 79. The publishing information page also indicated that there was an editorial committee (no members named), the publisher was the Science and Encyclopedia Publishing House, the place of printing was the Moranbong Printing Plant, the date of printing was 28 August Juche 111 (2022), and the date of issue was 15 September Juche 111 (2022). The copyright line was © Science and Encyclopedia Publishing House 2022, DPR Korea. The publishing information has shown changes over time; for example, in Issue 1, 2011, the place of printing was the Pyongyang General Printing Plant, did not include a copyright line or telephone number, and the ISSN (missing from the publishing information page) was found atop the bar code on the journal’s back cover.