Contents

Between Development and the State: Recasting South Korean Dirigisme

Park, Hun Joo

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Abstract

This article offers an alternative understanding and a critique of how South Korea's development has been interpreted by various scholars. The proponents of developmental state overlook the fact that South Korean dirigisme harmed equity, democracy, social cohesion, and thus the people's ability to take the initiative and form a viable civil society. By considering how the state meddled with the economy as a deliberately selected course, an analysis can be made of the dysfunction of developmental statism or “diseased” dirigisme. The inequity between the deprivations suffered by small firm operators and other citizens and the gains reaped by a few business conglomerates (or chaebol), remains symptomatic of South Korea's dirigiste disease. The dominant themes in the current economic discourses are privatisation, marketisation, deregulation and the rolling‐back of the welfare state. However, liberalising the economy without state reform may aggravate the dirigiste disease in South Korea. By linking the state‐led and people‐centred arguments, this article provides a fresh discourse on principles of policy‐making and state‐action to broaden the valuation of development beyond economic efficiency or competitiveness.

Issue Date
2004-06
Publisher
Routledge
Citation
ASIAN JOURNAL OF POLITICAL SCIENCE, v.12, no.1, pp.95 - 115, 2004
DOI
10.1080/02185370408434235
Journal Title
ASIAN JOURNAL OF POLITICAL SCIENCE
Start Page
95
End Page
115
ISSN
0218-5377
Language
English
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