Even among the four Asian tigers, with their economic miracles during the past several decades that allowed them to join the ranks of the developed nations, South Korea is extraordinary. As significant as its economic progress, from a dirt poor and devastated nation in the 1960s, is South Korea’s emerging welfare state. Although established in a short time, and still immature in some aspects, its unique East-Asian model now faces a population that is aging at an unprecedented rate.
This book introduces readers to the impact of demographic changes in Korea, particularly the impact of these on work, retirement and pensions; and as importantly, provides an explanation for the reforms of public policy in these domains. The chapters provide an up-to-date assessment of aging, retirement, and pension policies in South Korea and give valuable insights into the diverse aspects of the unprecedented rapid aging. The theme of this volume, which brings together the foremost Korean scholars and experts, is how rapid demographic change in Korea has been a central factor in income security policy for the elderly, as well as workplace policies.
1. Introduction: Population aging and income security Thomas R. Klassen and Jae-jin Yang 2. Pathway to the Korean welfare state: From newly industrialized to an aging tiger Moo-Kwon Chung 3. South Korea’s unique demography and social risks Young Jun Choi 4. The emergence of a new labour market: The changing nature of work and retirement Dong-Myeon Shin 5. The National Pension Scheme and the multi-pillar system of old-age income security in Korea Soo Wan Kim 6. Korean Civil Service Pension: History and recent reform Jun-Ho Bae 7. Building private and occupational pensions Hanam Phang 8. Challenges of pension fund management: Governance and investment strategy Jongwook Won 9. Public pension schemes at a crossroads: Rapid aging but little room for reform Suk-myung Yun 10. Pension politics in Korea: Social dialogue and the pension reform process Hong-Won Chung 11. The Korean experience in comparative perspective Martin Hering 12. Conclusion: Averting the expected catastrophe Jae-jin Yang and Thomas R. Klassen