Korean Politics

Effect of Reasons for Re/By-election on Voting Participation and Outcomes

This paper argues that voters will participate in and vote in order to hold those responsible for re/by-elections accountable. According to the findings, voters are more likely to vote when incumbents commit illegal acts and are forced to resign by judicial decisions, as opposed to when incumbents resign for personal reasons. Furthermore, when an incumbent party re-appoints a candidate for a re/by-election despite previous incumbents of the party committing illegal acts and resigning by force, voters are more likely to reject that party’s candidate.

Leadership in Communication

What motivates public employees to carry out public services more likely? How can leadership style affect the motivation of public employees? Existing administrative literature identifies Public Service Motivation (PSM) as a factor which makes public employees more willing to serve citizens and society’s stability and development voluntarily. Scholars argue that different types of leadership may heighten or dampen PSM in employees, transformational leadership which directs and advises each of the members of an organization, promotes the PSM, whereas transactional leadership focuses on the cost effectiveness of employees and discourages intrinsic motivation. Therefore, we anticipate that the type of leadership provided by the leaders (suppliers) in the public sector will impact the PSM of members with hierarchical culture in Korean public organizations (consumers). This study identifies leadership types and their effects on organizational PSM, and communication in public sector. We analyze the relationship between PSM, leadership, and communication within the organization, utilizing the Public Employee Perception Survey Data of 2020.

What Do We Know and Do Not Know?

This chapter examines whether existing explanations of South Korean attitudes regarding North Korea and Korean unification adequately explain changes after the declaration at Panmunjom on April 27, 2018. This study uses the National Consciousness Survey Data to estimate these shifts in attitude. Our results show that South Korean attitudes shifted following the Panmunjom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity, and Unification of the Korean Peninsula. We show that existing explanations for generational effects do not explain the national attitude shifts on unification; our study demonstrates that a wide divergence exists between younger and the older generations, and younger generations are more likely to display a negative attitude toward North Korea and unification even after the Declaration. We also show that the prospects of unification evoke different attitudes across generations. Our results imply that the Panmunjom Declaration is a prominent political event, but it is necessary to analyze it without overestimating it.

Does North Korea Policies Reflect Public Opinion?

This paper empirically analyzes the public survey data conducted before and after the Panmunjom Declaration on April 27, 2018. We aim to confirm whether the preferences towards North Korean policies, public and leadership have changed under the influence of the New Korean Peninsula Situation since the Panmunjom Declaration. The results indicate that the respondents continue to have discriminatory perceptions towards North Korea in terms of both the leadership and the public despite the 2018 Panmunjom Declaration. However, while preferences towards individual actors changed post-Declaration, these differences do not aggregate to changes in policy preferences towards North Korea. Only the post-Declaration preferences of May 24th measures changed. It indicates indicate a more critical perception of North Koreans, wherein even those with previously optimistic or positive perceptions worsened after the Panmunjom Declaration. Finally, this study suggests that the South Korean government needs to design two-way and flexible policies that take into consideration changes in public preferences as well as the parties involved in inter-Korean relations.

Climate and Electoral Participation

Does the weather affect elections? How will the weather affect voter participation? This study aims to examine the relationship between weather and elections, especially voting participation. Changes in the climatic environment are factors that have significant influences on collective human behaviors. We expect that the weather on election day, such as precipitation, temperature, and particulate matter, will lead to a systematic change in voter turnout. The empirical results show that the various factors of weather-precipitation, temperature, particulate matter (PM10, PM2.5)—have an effect on the voter turnout. In particular, in election politics of South Korea, precipitation and temperature significantly impede voting participation, but the level of air pollution, which appeared as particulate matter, is different depending on the type of election (the National Assembly elections, presidential elections). At the same time, the results of analyzing the effect of the level of particulate matter on the voter turnout suggest that institutional designs can mitigate the effect of climate on external activities in terms of voting. If voters can vote regardless of the climate of the day of the election, it would be possible to counteract the adverse effects of bad weather on voter turnout.

Class Betrayal Voting and Political Knowledge in the 20th Korean General Election

This paper examines empirically if class-based voting behavior exists among Korean voters and if class-based voting is conditioned on their level of political knowledge. In other words, we focus here on the interaction effect between voters' class and their level of political knowledge on their vote choices. In addition, as we test these empirical questions, we employ alternative measure of class that incorporating both index of monthly income and assets whereas most of previous researches estimate it only with income data. Empirical finding shows that voters who have higher level of political knowledge tend to do class betrayal voting'. The higher class voters have tendency to vote for the Minjoo party if they have higher level of political knowledge. However, the voting results of the lower class show that they vote for Saenuri party as they have higher level of political knowledge. This result presents the significant effects that the political knowledge has on the relationship between class and voting behavior in the 20th National Assembly Election. In conclusion, this paper has implications that the class voting should be discussed both on the aspect of supply and demand of politics, voter’s political knowledge and class representing party.