Soon-In Lee graduated from the Hong-ik University in Seoul with a BA in Industrial Design in 1972 and an MA in Interior Design in 1978, and completed his studies at the Pratt Institute, New York, and the Domus Academy, Milan. He graduated from Helsinki University with an MBA in Design Management in 2001.
He has been working on his dissertation for a PhD at UT in the Netherlands. While studying, he started working as a designer for Gold Star (later to become LG) in 1975. In 1990, Soon-In Lee became President of the LG Europe Design Center in Dublin, and in 1995 Director of the LG Electronics Corporate Design Center in Seoul. During the same year, he became Executive Managing Director of the Korea Institute of Design Promotion (KIDP).
He has been a lecturer in design management at graduate school. He was also Dean of International Design School for Advanced Studies of Hong-ik University. Soon-In Lee was President (2011-2013) of the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID). Soon-In Lee was Chair of the Korea Design & Brand Management Society, and General director for Gwangju Design Biennale 2007. Since 2003, he has been the Chair of Asia Design Network and Korea 3D Printing Culture Forum. At present Soon-In Lee is Executive Managing Director of Seoul Design Center.