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  • Author: Ilpyong J. Kim
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: South Korea today has the eleventh largest economy in the world. Although recent setbacks placed a temporary brake on several decades of surging economic development, these obstacles have now been largely overcome. The Republic of Korea is proving once again that it has one of the most vibrant economies among advanced industrial countries. These gains have been accompanied by corollary advances in medicine, transportation, urban planning and agriculture, to name but a few areas of noteworthy development. In 1987 the country moved away from its authoritarian past and instituted a working democratic system. In short, the pace of change in the economy, in politics and in social life generally has been spectacular. It is entirely appropriate, therefore, that Korean achievements, as documented in a wide range of government publications, should now be made accessible, in English, to scholars, policy makers and the interested public. Korean Government Publications: An Introductory Guide is the first comprehensive English-language guide to this wealth of information, much of it published in both Korean and English. It is especially timely because of the recent upsurge in the number of government publications and because the mistrust of documents published under authoritarian regimes has dissipated with the advent of genuine democracy.
  • Political Geography: South Korea, Korea
  • Author: James L. George
  • Publication Date: 04-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Readiness, the capability to respond quickly to a conflict with the appropriate force, is considered one of the most important elements in defense planning. From one-third to well over one-half of the defense budget goes toward maintaining readiness. Few people questioned the need for readiness, especially after the attack by North Korea against South Korea in 1950 and during the Cold War, when the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact was poised to quickly thrust into Western Europe without much warning.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States, South Korea, North Korea, Western Europe
  • Author: Michael J. Green, James T. Laney, Morton I. Abramowitz
  • Publication Date: 07-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: In May, former Secretary of Defense William Perry traveled to North Korea with a comprehensive proposal to increase outside assistance for its isolated and declining Stalinist regime in exchange for steps by the North to reduce its threatening military posture. The Perry proposal was designed to test North Korea's intentions not only to abide by the 1994 Agreed Framework, which aimed to cap Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions, but also to stop further missile tests and military provocations. It is unlikely that North Korea will respond positively. The regime has survived for five decades only by maintaining a belligerent stance. Pyongyang has rebuffed South Korean President Kim Dae Jung's unprecedented efforts to improve North-South relations and has continued to produce military tensions, even in the wake of the Perry visit. But it is too soon to give up on a comprehensive package to reduce tensions with North Korea. Despite the illusion of self-sufficiency, or juche, the North is increasingly dependent on outside help to sustain itself. It is possible that over time Pyongyang will find no alternative to greater interaction with the outside world. Barring an increase in threatening North Korean actions, the United States should keep the Perry proposal on the table and continue to support Kim Dae Jung's policy of engagement. A second Taepodong missile test by North Korea would not violate any existing North Korean commitments, but it would significantly change the situation in Northeast Asia. We should make every effort to deter a launch, but if one takes place, the United States, Japan, and South Korea will have to examine ways to enhance defense against a different North Korean threat. South Korea should suspend new investment in North Korea and Japan should impose new sanctions and consider restrictions on financial transfers to the North. The United States should lower its diplomatic activity toward Pyongyang, keeping channels open, but forcing North Korea to provide incentives for greater dialogue. A missile launch should not end our attempts at diplomacy or cause us to forget that North Korea's relative military capabilities are in decline, but if a test is conducted business cannot continue as usual. Although a North Korean missile launch would do great damage to political support for the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO) in the United States, Japan, and South Korea, it should not be a reason for us to abandon our commitments under the Agreed Framework. The Agreed Framework stands as the major bulwark against a return to the kind of calamitous military steps the United States was forced to consider in 1994 to stop North Korea's nuclear program. Inspections of suspicious underground facilities at Kumchangri in May revealed no North Korean violation of the Agreed Framework. Although we cannot assume from this that Pyongyang has forsaken its nuclear ambitions, we do know that implementation of the Agreed Framework remains the best approach to preventing nuclear weapons development in the North. In the end, there is no easy solution to the intractable North Korean problem. Efforts to reduce tensions and build North-South reconciliation have yielded little. We are strong enough to test inducements for change in the North, but our policy must be based on robust deterrence and close defense cooperation with our allies.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, East Asia, South Korea, North Korea, Korean Peninsula
  • Author: Linda Jakobson
  • Publication Date: 01-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: In the spring of 1999 Swiri-fever swept South Korea. Millions flocked to see the first domestic action film considered up to international standards. “Swiri,” a slick Hollywood-style spy thriller, revolves around the complex issue of Korean unification that lies at the heart of Korea's future. Since the inauguration of President Kim Dae-jung in February 1998, South Korea has debated unification more openly than ever before.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Civil Society, Humanitarian Aid, International Cooperation, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Asia, South Korea, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Andrew C. Kuchins, Alexei V. Zagorsky
  • Publication Date: 07-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center
  • Abstract: Contemporary discussions of virtually any aspect of Russian foreign and security policy must take as their point of departure the extraordinarily weakened condition of the Russian Federation. There is no comparable case of such a rapid and dramatic decline in the status of a great power during peacetime in modern history. The Russian economy has been in a virtual free fall for most of the 1990s. The World Bank estimated the Russian GNP in 1997, using fixed exchange rates not adjusted for purchasing power parity, at $403.5 billion, making Russia the twelfth-largest economy in the world, just ahead of the Netherlands and just behind South Korea. Russian per capita GNP of $2,740 ranked fifty-first in the world and was in the category of “low middle” income countries. In 1997 the Russian GNP was about 5 percent of that of the United States, 8 percent adjusted for purchasing power parity. The figures for 1998 will be even starker given the devaluation of the ruble to approximately 30 percent of its 1997 value and continuing overall economic decline. A back-of-the-envelope calculation would have Russian GNP at the end of 1998 at no more than $120 billion and per capita GNP at less than $1,000.
  • Topic: Security
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Asia, South Korea, Netherlands
  • Author: Eiii Hang Shin, Moon-Gi Suh
  • Publication Date: 03-1999
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: This study examines the relationship between structural characteristics of business firms and their effectiveness in South Korea, using multivariate regression analysis. The objective is to analyze the relationships between organizational characteristics and financial structure. This study is not concerned with individual-level variables (for example, interaction patterns and role conflict) or psychological variables (motivation, individual stress), although these are also important aspects of organizations. The view of organizations in the present study is strongly influenced by the work of scholars who argue that organizations are characterized by structural relationships among interdependent attributes.
  • Political Geography: South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Hugo Wheegook Kim
  • Publication Date: 09-1998
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: The South Korean economy has been highly praised by foreign economists as a successful model of development and proudly joined OECD in late 1996 as the world's eleventh-largest economy, with per capita annual income of over $10,000. Since then, a series of business bankruptcies and a financial crisis resulting in the imposition of IMF supervision on December 3,1997, has caused a shift in political power. The new administration began to work for systemic reforms, which have been interrupted by the political opposition, the entrenched chaebols, and labor unions.
  • Political Geography: South Korea
  • Author: Hong Nack Kim
  • Publication Date: 09-1998
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: The South Korean political system has undergone drastic changes since the establishment of the Republic of Korea (ROK) in 1948. Following the authoritarian Syngman Rhee regime (1948-1960), South Korea had to endure over a quarter-century of military rule, from 1961 to 1987. In the wake of massive student demonstrations against the Chun Doo Hwan regime in 1987, the historic June 29th declaration was issued to accommodate popular demands for the democratization of the political system. It promised drastic democratic reforms, including popular direct election of the president. Following the presidential election of 1987, South Korea embarked on a new era of democratic politics.
  • Political Geography: South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Ilpyong J. Kim, Dong Suh Bark
  • Publication Date: 09-1998
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: After three decades of military rule in South Korea, civilian democratic government was inaugurated in 1992 with direct election of the president. The political culture in South Korea, therefore, is still in the process of developing; and the transformation from authoritarian to democratic politics may take a long time.
  • Political Geography: South Korea
  • Author: Hang Yul Rhee
  • Publication Date: 09-1998
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: The spectacular performance, until recently, of East Asia's emerging economies, popularly known as the Asian tigers, has fueled wild speculation in the West about the so-called "Asian Century." "Never before in world history," noted the Economist in March 1997, "has any region sustained such rapid growth for so long." The GDP per capita of Taiwan ($13,200) and South Korea ($11,900) were already impressive enough in 1997 to place them at the gate of the advanced industrialized nations of the world. Japan, of course, has long been an acknowledged super-economy, often said to have led the flock of economic "flying geese" before they turned into what Chung-In Moon ten years ago called the "swarming sparrows" in Asia. Then suddenly last summer, seemingly as if from the blue, came the financial crisis in Pacific Asia. In reality, however, it followed what had been a decade-long period of sclerosis in the Japanese economy.
  • Political Geography: Japan, East Asia, Asia, South Korea