74GSPR 2008 :: Perspective ReviewDevelopment of Women-relatedPolicies and its Implications for FuturePolicies Agenda in Ko...
75GSPR 2008 Vol.1areas is also an issue related to women’s rightsand interests. Unpaid home care, such ascaring for childr...
76GSPR 2008 :: Perspective Reviewwomen.Increasing participation of women in policy-making process also includes increasing...
77GSPR 2008 Vol.1counseling centers and shelters have beenestablished to offer legal, medical andvocational training servi...
78GSPR 2008 :: Perspective ReviewThis paper briefly presents the changes in thelife and status of Korean women by analyzin...
over the previous year. The total fertility ratein Korea had decreased from 3.74 in 1975, andthere has been a slight incre...
80GSPR 2008 :: Perspective ReviewFigure 1. Female heads of householdDecision making by man and wife within ahouseholdAccor...
Married women’s use of time for house choresin 2004 was 3 hours and 18 minutes which was2 hours and 52 minutes more than m...
82GSPR 2008 :: Perspective Review6.9 years increase inwomen’s life expectancyin 2006 compared to 1990Women’s life expectan...
change of increasing higher education forwomen. There seems to be no or very slightdisparity between men and women in then...
84GSPR 2008 :: Perspective Reviewage group older than 29 years of age.Figure 7. Participation Rate ofEconomically Active W...
Figure 8. Average Monthly Wage4. Korean Women’s Political andAdministrative Participation andInternational Comparison of t...
bare examination and examination foremployment lowest-level officials(administration and public peace) respectively,and 4....
result from GDI and GEM, but there is noimprovement in the utilization of humanresources.<Table 9>Gender-related Developme...
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Development of Women Related Policies and Its Implications for Future Policies Agenda in Korea

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Title: Development of women-related policies and its implications for future policies agenda in Korea
Material Type: Report
Author: Min, Hyunjoo
Publisher: KWDI
Date: 2008
Journal Title; Vol./Issue GSPR:2008 Vol.1
Pages: 14
Subject Country: South Korea (Asia and Pacific)
Language: English
File Type: Documents
Original Format: pdf
Subject: Social Policy; Gender
Holding: KDI School of Public Policy and Management

Published in: News & Politics, Technology
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Development of Women Related Policies and Its Implications for Future Policies Agenda in Korea

  1. 1. 74GSPR 2008 :: Perspective ReviewDevelopment of Women-relatedPolicies and its Implications for FuturePolicies Agenda in Koreaby Hyunjoo Min Work & Family Research Department, KWDIThis paper reviews the development ofwomen’s policies in Korea with specialattention to the role of the Ministry of GenderEquality in shaping gender policies for the past10 years. First, this paper will introduce thecharacteristics of women’s policies. Second,this paper will discuss the achievements thatthe Ministry of Gender Equality(MOGE) hasmade and their impacts on changing the statusof women in the labor market and the politicalsphere. Finally, this paper will discuss somepolicies agenda that women-related policiesshould consider to improve the quality of lifeof Korean women.1. Characteristics of Women’sPolicies1) Women’s Rights and InterestsKorean women’s policies consist of two typesof gender issues in general: the first issue isabout improvement in women’s rights andinterests. The second issue is related to theadoption of a gender mainstreamingperspective in analyzing political and socialagenda.Policies aimed at improving women’s rightand interests basically embrace the policies toenhance safety and to promote political statusof women. Women tend to be at the risk ofsex-related violence, such as sexual violence,domestic violence, and prostitution (sextrafficking). Although there are legalprotections set to protect women from socialviolence and risks, most women who sufferfrom violence appeal that the violence tends tobe committed at home or by theiracquaintances. Further, women tend to beexcluded from legal protection. That is,socially disadvantaged women are also subjectto the greatest risk of violence.The policies to eliminate socialdiscrimination is another issue related towomen’s rights and interests. The Ministry ofGender Equality started to investigate cases ofsocial discrimination against women from1999 through 2005, and afterwards, the HumanRights Commission has been investigating andtrying to correct the cases. Further, Koreanwomen’s policies have been designed todevelop women’s human resoruces and enablethem to be part of social mainstream. For thispurpose, the Ministry of Gender Equality hasoffered vocational trainings for women and thefuture career guidance and counselingprograms for women in college.The forth issue concerning women’s rightsand interests includes efforts to expand theopportunities for women to participate in thepolitical sphere. By applying the AffirmativeAction (AA) to public areas (such as publicservants and congressmen), the policy aims toincrease the proportion of female politiciansand thus to reinforce women’s empowerment.Transferring domestic care work to public
  2. 2. 75GSPR 2008 Vol.1areas is also an issue related to women’s rightsand interests. Unpaid home care, such ascaring for children, sick family members, andchores, tends to devaluate women’s status inthe labor market as well as at home. Further,women who take primary responsibilities forthose unpaid home care tend to be excludedfrom paid work in the labor market. Thus, acritical issue is how we can carefully evaluateunpaid home care and support thosecareworkers, most of whom are women.2) Gender Mainstreaming PerspectivesThe Ministry of Gender Equality has tried toadopt a “gender mainstreaming perspective” inbuilding and evaluating the governmentalpolicies. It includes gender-based analyses andgender-sensitive budgets. That is, it not onlyaims at increasing the budget to improvewomen’s lives, but also aims at profoundlychanging social values and attitudes towardmen and women. Further discussion willfollow.2. Accomplishments of Women’sPolicies1) Adopting and InstitutionalizingGender Mainstreaming StrategiesThe need for gender-sensitive budget and itsoperation for improving women-relatedpolicies and services was discussed at the 1995Beijing Womens Conference. The Gender-sensitive budget and document requestproposal submitted by the Gender Equalityand Family Committee of the NationalAssembly was passed by the NationalAssembly on November 8, 2002; and thegovernment launched the Gender-sensitivebudget analysis plan and the Gender-sensitivebudget analysis.’ In 2004, gender-basedanalysis was performed on 10 key policies toreview gender discrimination. In 2006, theMinistry of Planning and Budgeting includedthe instructions in the ‘Budget Guide’requesting that budgeting reflect gender-basedanalysis. But it was pointed out that building afirm foundation for gender policyimplementation requires sharing genderequality awareness among governmentemployees and that the current and futurepolicies must be revised in accordance withgender-based analysis of the effects ofbudgeting on each gender.Gender-based analysis is a policy analysistool to facilitate formulation andimplementation of gender-equality policies.This evaluation systematically integratesgender and policy requirements into policy-making process in respect with socio-economic characteristics of each gender. In2002, the Womens Development Act Revisionprovided a legal ground for a gender-basedanalysis and impelled the mandatoryimplementation of gender-based analysis forcentral and local governments. In 2004,gender-based analysis was performed onseveral key policies, and the analysis expandedto 290 institutions in 2008. These efforts arebeing made to alleviate the persisting genderdiscrepancy at the individual policy andproject level.2) The Expansion of Women’sParticipation in Policy-makingProcessIn March 2004, the Political Party Act wasrevised to increase the proportion of women’srepresentation (over 50%) at the NationalAssembly and at the ‘Do’/ City Councilelections. One of the Articles from the aboveAct encourages political parties to assign 30%of the local assembly candidacy nomination to
  3. 3. 76GSPR 2008 :: Perspective Reviewwomen.Increasing participation of women in policy-making process also includes increasing thenumber of women and expanding women’srole in various governmental committees. TheWomen’s Development Act provided a solidground for women’s participation in policy-making roles. Women’s participation ingovernmental committees had only reached2.2% in 1984, but the rate has considerablyincreased since 1998, reaching 30% in 2002.An index to evaluate whether women arewell represented in policy-making is theproportion of women in government positions.By establishing and performing Women’sEmployment Goals (1996~2002) and GenderEquality Employment Goals (2003~2007), thegovernment has achieved a substantial increasein women’s employment in governmentalpositions.3) Strengthening the EqualEmployment ActAlthough an increasing number of womenhave been entering the labor market, womenstill leave the labor force at the time ofmarriage and childbirth. Further, even whenwomen are employed, they tend to experiencevarious forms of discrimination in makingoccupational choices, promotions, andemployment conditions such as wage. A rangeof policies have been legislated to eradicatesuch discriminations and establish equalopportunity at work places. The SexualEquality Act of 1987 (December) provided thefoundation for gender equality in workplace byoutlining equal opportunity and treatment,maternity protection, making work and homecompatible, improving women’s careercompetence, and anti-sexual harassmentregulations. As part of these efforts,strengthening maternity protection, sharing itscost with the public and reforming theprotection system for women are beingproposed to secure continuity in women’semployment. The establishment of theMOGEF with 90-days mandatory maternityleave and childcare leave allowance has playeda significant role in fostering women’semployment and stabilizing women’s career.4) Strengthening the Human Rights ofWomenAn Act was legislated to bring an end tohuman trafficking and to offer protection forvictims of sex-trafficking and sex peddlers.This Act contributes to raising socialawareness of sex trafficking and punishes thethird-parties who facilitate sex trafficking.With this effort, Korean policy to prevent sextrafficking has reached international standards.In addition to providing victims with legalprotection, the government offers assistancefor the rehabilitation and self-reliance of thosewomen wishing to leave the industry as well asproviding protection for victims of sex-trafficking. The victim assistance programsinclude counseling, legal assistance, shelter,medical and psychological therapies, andvocational training.The Act on the Punishment of SexualCrimes and Protection of Victims thereof(1994), the Special Act for the Punishment ofDomestic Violence, and the Prevention ofDomestic Violence and Victim Protection Act(1997) define sexual abuse and domesticviolence as social crimes that the governmentmust intervene to prevent and punish by law.Programs for prevention of sexual abuse/domestic violence and for protection of victimsinclude the ‘enforcement of victim protection’and the ‘prevention plan.’ In addition,
  4. 4. 77GSPR 2008 Vol.1counseling centers and shelters have beenestablished to offer legal, medical andvocational training services.3. Future Agenda for Women’sPolicies1) Developing Women’s HumanResources and Assisting WomenReturning to the Labor MarketThe MOGE offers various programs to supporthousewives who wish to return to work aftertaking break from paid work due to childbirthand child rearing. Programs include vocationaltraining in social service sectors such aschildcare, education, welfare, and culture tohelp them to get a job at related institutions,schools, and social welfare centers as well asat private homes.Building women-friendly culture inorganizations is another project for the MOGEto increase opportunities for women who wishto stay in the labor market and enjoypromotion. The MOGE has developed the“Women Friendliness Index (WFI),” and plansto award the institutions including public andprivate organizations certificates of women-friendly institutions.2) Protecting Women’s Human Rightsand Overall SupportOne major project that the MOGE plans toexpand is the program to assist women whoimmigrated to Korea through marriage.Responding to the rapid increase in the numberof foreign women who move to Korea to getmarried, the MOGE has launched a supportprogram for marriage-based immigrantwomen. This program was designed to offersocial support for difficulties these immigrantwomen might encounter, such as familyconflicts, language problems, and childbirthand childcare. Thus, the programs containKorean language courses, pregnancy andchildbirth guidance, as well as childcarecourses provided in various languages such asChinese, Vietnamese, English and Russian.By performing these programs, the MOGEplans to provide more support programs to aidmarriage-based immigrant women to facilitatetheir adaptation to Korea.Another major project that the MOGE plansto carry out is a campaign to prevent sexualharassment against minorities includingteenagers, women and foreign workers. TheMOGE has worked to establish informationand protection service center in three majorcities (Seoul, Daegu and Gwangju) and tooperate one-stop service for victims of sexualabuse and domestic violence.REFERENCESThe Ministry of Gender Equality (2008). “The Role of KoreanGovernment in Preventing Transnational Trafficking inPersons.”The Ministry of Gender Equality (2008). “The Second Basic WomensPolicy Plan (2003-2007).”
  5. 5. 78GSPR 2008 :: Perspective ReviewThis paper briefly presents the changes in thelife and status of Korean women by analyzingrelevant indicators.1. Population, Family, and Health106.1 births of male vs. 100 births of femaleThe indicator of sex ratio at birth is significantin Korea which represents the status of womensince there has been a preference for sons inchildbirth throughout Korean culture.According to the change of sex ratio at birthfor the past thirty years, the figure was thelowest 105.3 in 1980 and the highest 116.5 in1990. The reason why there was a disparity ofsex ratio at birth in 1980 and 1990 is revealedwhen this paper focuses on sex ratio at birth bybirth order. There was no explicit difference ofsex ratio at birth by birth order in 1980 thatshowed the lowest sex ratio at birth: the sexratio at birth among the first children, secondchildren, third children, and fourth childrenwere 106.0, 106.5, 106.9, and 110.2respectively. However, there was a distinctivedifference of sex ratio at birth by birth order in1990 that presented the highest sex ratio atbirth: the sex ratio at birth among the first,second, third, and fourth children were 108.5,117.0, 188.8, 209.2 respectively. This resultseems to be influenced by the increase ofinduced abortion through medical surgeryrather than simply by a higher preference ofson in childbirth compared to other times.There had been a gradual decline of sex ratioat birth since 1990 and the figure in 2007 was106.1. In case of the sex ratio at birth amongthe third and fourth children in 2007, thefigures were 115.4 and 119.4 respectively.<Table 1>Sex Ratio at Birth by Birth OrderThe total fertility rate in 2007 wasapproximately 1.26 which increased by 0.13Observing Changes in the Status ofKorean Women through Statisticsby Jaeseon Joo Gender Statistics Research Center, KWDIYear TotalFourth Childrenand upwardFirstChildrenSecondChildrenThirdChildren19751980198519901995200020052007112.4105.3109.4116.5113.2110.2107.7106.1120.0106.0106.0108.5105.8106.2104.8104.4109.8106.5107.8117.0111.7107.4106.4105.9110.8106.9129.2188.8177.2141.7127.7115.2105.5110.2146.8209.2203.9167.5133.5119.4Source: Korean Womens Development Institute (2008), Women inKorea.Unit: %
  6. 6. over the previous year. The total fertility ratein Korea had decreased from 3.74 in 1975, andthere has been a slight increase since 2006onwards. The fertility rate of the age groupbetween 30~34 was 102.2 with increase of 12over the previous year, and the figure of theage group between 25~29 was 96.1 withincrease of 6.2 over 89.9 of the previous year.<Table 2>Age-specific Fertility Rate and TotalFertility Rate22.1% of the head of households in 2008 arewomenThe number of women household heads whohave responsibility to support the members ofthe household has increased by around 3.2times from 1,169 in 1980 to 3,689 in 2008.The increase rate of women heads ofhousehold was far higher than that of menalbeit the number of men householders islarger than that of women in terms of scalesince the number of men householders hasincreased by about 1.9 times from 6.801 in1980 to 12,985 in 2008. The proportion ofwomen heads of households has risenmoderately from 14.7% in 1980 to 22.1% in2008.79GSPR 2008 Vol.1Age-specific Fertility Rate2)(per 1,000 women)15~19 20~24 25~29 30~34 35~39 40~44 45~491975 14.2 177.6 262.8 145.6 57.9 20.7 5.0 3.471980 12.9 141.4 244.1 106.6 30.6 8.5 2.0 2.831990 4.2 83.2 169.4 50.5 9.6 1.5 0.2 1.591995 3.6 62.9 177.1 69.6 15.2 2.3 0.2 1.652000 2.5 39.0 150.6 84.2 17.4 2.6 0.2 1.472005 2.1 17.9 92.3 82.4 19.0 2.5 0.2 1.082006 2.2 17.7 89.9 90.2 21.5 2.6 0.2 1.132007 - 19.6 96.1 102.2 25.8 - - 1.26YearTotal FertilityRateUnit : Births per 1,000 women, per womenNote: 1) The average number of babies born to women during their reproductive years (age 15-49), commonly used for comparison of fertility rates.2) The number of births in each age group by the total female population (in thousands) in each age groupSource: Korea National Statistical Office, Annual Report on the Vital Statistics.
  7. 7. 80GSPR 2008 :: Perspective ReviewFigure 1. Female heads of householdDecision making by man and wife within ahouseholdAccording to a research in 2006, mostdecision-makings within a household weremade jointly by the husband and the wife.Although 65.3% of living expenses weredetermined by wives in 2006, many otheragendas in household were determined jointlyby the man and the wife, such as selling andbuying a house and disposal, investment andmultiplication of a property, and childcare andeducation. In case of decision making aboutchildcare and education which is consideredvital in recent days, the proportion of wives’decision is 39.2% which is significantly higherthan husbands’ decision (3.1%).Figure 2. Decision-making by MarriedCouples: 2006Married women’s contribution to housechores (3 hours and 18 minutes) in 2004 was7.6 times higher than married men’scontribution (26 minutes)Note: Survey with married households of ages from 15 to 59 years oldSource: Korea Institute for Health & Social Affairs, National Fertility andFamily Health Survey Report 2006.Source: Korea National Statistical Office, Population and Housing Census Report.Materials in Population Projection are utilized for the figures after 2002.
  8. 8. Married women’s use of time for house choresin 2004 was 3 hours and 18 minutes which was2 hours and 52 minutes more than married men(26 minutes) according to the Life Time UseSurvey conducted by the Korea NationalStatistical Office. Though married women’suse of time for house chores explicitlydeclined when compared to the first survey in1999, married women devoted their time 7.6times more than married men did. In case ofunmarried men and women, the use of time forhouse chores slightly increased over 1999when it was 45 minutes and 18 minutes forwomen and men respectively.<Table 3>Time Spent on Household Affairs byMarital StatusInternational marriages account for 11.1% ofall the marriages (345,592) in 2007The average age at first marriage in 2007 was28.1 years old for women and 31.1 years oldfor men (women’s mean age at the firstmarriage is 3 years earlier than men’s age at thefirst marriage) and this presents 2.7 yearsincrease for both men and women comparedwith 1995. The number of marriages haddeclined from 398,484 cases in 1995 to316,375 cases in 2005. However, overall345,592 couples were married in 2007,showing increase from 2005. Recently, theinterest in multicultural family is increasing asinternational marriages increase. Theproportion of international marriage was verylow (3.4%) in 1995, but the highest percentageof international marriage was 13.6% (43,121cases) in 2005 that presented the lowestnumber of marriages, and 11.1% of all themarriages were international marriages in 2007.Figure 3. Mean Age at First Marriage<Table 4>International Marriage81GSPR 2008 Vol.1Note: Population of age 20 and over.Source: Korea National Statistical Office (2000, 2005), Life Time UseSurvey.Note: ( ) refers to the percentage of international marriages out of thetotal number of marriagesSource: Korea National Statistical Office, Annual Report on the VitalStatistics.Single MarriedTotal Female Male Total Female Male1999 0:25 0:37 0:15 2:39 4:30 0:362004 0:30 0:45 0:18 1:58 3:18 0:26YearUnit: Hours1995 398,484 13,494 (3.4) 10,365 3,1292000 334,030 12,319 (3.7) 7,304 5,0152005 316,375 43,121 (13.6) 31,180 11,9412007 345,592 38,491 (11.1) 29,140 9,351Year Total MarriagesSub totalWives withdifferentnationalityHusbands withdifferentnationalityInternational MarriagesUnit: Hours
  9. 9. 82GSPR 2008 :: Perspective Review6.9 years increase inwomen’s life expectancyin 2006 compared to 1990Women’s life expectancy in 2006 was 82.4years old, which was 6.7 year longer thanmen’s life expectancy (75.7 years old). Thismeans that 6.9 years and 8.4 years increase forwomen and men respectively, compared to1990. The gap of life expectancy between menand women increased between 1970 and 1990:6.9 years in 1970 and 8.2 years in 1990.Nevertheless, the decreasing tendency of lifeexpectancy gap between men and women wasobserved: 7.3 years in 2000 and 6.7 years in2006.Figure 4. Average life expectancy2. Education25.4 among 100 women in 2005 graduatedfrom college and higher25.4% of Korean women of 25 old years ofage or order was educated in colleges or highereducation. In case of women’s educationalattainment, there were 77.1% of women whograduated from elementary school in 1975, butthe percentage of women who were educatedlower than elementary school was 25.5% in2005. Furthermore, the proportion of womenwho graduated from high schools and collegesand higher were 37.0% and 25.4% respectivelyin 2005. Nevertheless, men whose educationalopportunities were higher than women showeddecrease among those educated at elementaryschool and lower, and increase among thoseeducated at colleges and higher.<Table 5>Distribution of Women Population 25 YearsOld & Over by Educational AttainmentWomen constitute 27.9% of doctoralgraduates in 2007Korean women have presented greatdevelopment in terms of equal right foreducation. The proportion of women amongthose with bachelor’s degree was only 37.0%in 1985 but the proportion increased by 12.2%to reach 49.2% in 2007. Moreover, theproportion of women among those who holdmater’s degree and doctoral degree duringcorresponding period increased 28.4% and17.7% respectively. This reflects a greatSource: Korea National Statistical Office, Life Table 2006.Female 77.1 12.1 8.4 2.4Male 53.1 17.7 9.7 9.5Female 54.1 20.5 20.2 5.2Male 31.9 20.5 32.1 15.5Female 35.0 17.1 34.8 13.1Male 17.8 14.2 41.4 26.6Female 25.5 12.1 37.0 25.4Male 12.2 10.2 39.7 37.8Year, SexMiddleSchoolHighSchoolCollegeand higherElementarySchoolandlowerUnit: %1975198519952005Note: Age 25 and over.Source: Korea National Statistical Office, Population and HousingCensus Report
  10. 10. change of increasing higher education forwomen. There seems to be no or very slightdisparity between men and women in thenumber of people who holds bachelors’ andmaster’s degree due to the increase ofwomen’s participation in higher education.Nevertheless, the percentage of women amongdoctoral graduates was 27.9% in 2007 whichwas explicitly lower than the proportion ofmen doctoral graduates.Figure 5. Degree Holders3. Economic ActivityWomen’s labor market participation 50.2% in2007 increasing by 8.3% over 1985The economic activity participation rate hasincreased gradually although not at greatspeed. Women’s labor market participation ratereached 50% range in 2005 for the first timefrom 41.9% in 1985, and the figure in 2007was 50.2% which was 8.3% higher than that of1985. On the other hand, men’s labor marketparticipation hit its peak of 76.4% in 1995, andmen’s labor market participation in 2007 was74.0% because of gradual decline from thepeak. Although the disparity of labor marketparticipation between men and womendecreased from 30.4% in 1985 to 23.8% in2007, the gap of labor market participation ratebetween men and women is still wide.Figure 6. Economic Activities by SexM-shape of Korean women’s labor marketparticipation graph due to child delivery andchild rearingThe change in Korean women’s labor marketparticipation rate is presented as M-shape linegraph. In case of data in 2007, women’s labormarket participation between ages 15 to 19was 8.0%, but it increased gradually andreached its peak of 68.0% between ages 25 to29. After marriage, women’s labor marketparticipation was 53.6% between ages 30 to 34that decreased by 14.4% due to child deliveryand child rearing. Re-entering the labormarket, women between 55 and 59 years oldindicated higher labor market participation ratethan the average participation rate. This patternis similar with the fluctuation of women’slabor market participation rate in 1985. Twodifferences between the present and 1985 are:the change in age for first diminution in labormarket participation due to child delivery andchild rearing between 25 and 29, and increasein women’s labor market participation in the83GSPR 2008 Vol.1Note: Figures for bachelors degree holders include colleges,universities, teacher training colleges and open universities. Figures for1985 and 1990 include college and teacher training college only.Source: Korea National Statistical Office, Population and HousingCensus Report, Population Projection. & Korea Ministry of Education& Human Resources Development, Statistical Yearbook of Education.Source: Korea National Statistical Office, Annual Report on theEconomically Active Population.
  11. 11. 84GSPR 2008 :: Perspective Reviewage group older than 29 years of age.Figure 7. Participation Rate ofEconomically Active Women by AgeWomen in professional and technicaloccupations account for 19.3% of womenworkers in 2007The proportion of women in professional andtechnical occupations among employed womenwas 19.3%, which is 13.9% increase over 1985.The proportion of women in professional andtechnical occupations was less than 10% by theearly 1990’s but the percentage increased to 11.4%in 1995, 14.0% in 2000, 17.5% in 2005, and19.3% in 2007 respectively. Furthermore, in lightof the scale of increase in the professional andtechnical workers’ rate of men and women,women’s increase scale is larger than that of menexcept in 1995. The women’s proportion ofprofessional and technical workers has increasedand reached 26.6% in 2007 except for women’sgreat decrease in 1995 because of drasticincreasing scale of men’s proportion inprofessional and technical occupations.<Table 6>Professional and Technical Workers by SexAverage monthly wage of women salaryworkers in 2007 was 1,839 thousand won,which was 63.6% of men’sKorean employed women are suffering notonly from difficulty of reconciling work andchild delivery and child rearing but also fromlower income level than that of men. Althoughthe average monthly wage of women salaryworkers in 2007 increased to 1,839 thousandswon compared with 2000, it was only 63.6%of men salary workers’ average monthly wage.The ratio of women’s income against men’sincome has increased from 46.6% in 1985, to53.4% in 1990, 58.0% in 1995, 62.9% in 2000,and 63.6% in 2007, but women’s income isstill distinctively lower than men’s income.Source: Korea National Statistical Office, Annual Report on theEconomically Active Population Survey.Source: Korea National Statistical Office, Annual Report on theEconomically Active Population Survey.1970 3,513 85 2.4 6,104 377 6.2 18.41975 4,261 87 2.0 7,431 329 4.4 20.91980 5,222 186 3.6 8,462 546 6.5 25.41985 5,833 317 5.4 9,137 773 8.5 29.11990 7,376 566 7.7 10,709 1,009 9.4 35.91995 8,267 939 11.4 12,147 2,407 19.8 28.12000 8,769 1,225 14.0 12,387 2,716 21.9 31.12005 9,526 1,669 17.5 13,330 3,107 23.3 34.92007 9,826 1,900 19.3 13,607 3,296 24.2 36.6Employedworkersproportionamongprofessional&technicalworkersProportionofprofessional&technicalworkersamongemployedworkersEmployedworkersProfessional&TechnicalworkersProportionofprofessional&technicalworkersamongemployedworkersproportionamongprofessional&technicalworkersUnit : 1,000 persons, %Year Female Male Women
  12. 12. Figure 8. Average Monthly Wage4. Korean Women’s Political andAdministrative Participation andInternational Comparison of theSocial Status of Korean WomenWomen constituted 13.7% of representativesat the 18thNational Assembly, showingincrease by 0.7% compared to 2004Political sphere in Korea is one of the sectorswith low participation of women. Thepercentage of women representatives in the18th National Assembly (299 persons) is13.7% (41 persons) in 2008. It is the highestproportion of women representatives, thoughthere has been increase in the number ofwomen representatives from 1 in 1978, to 6 in1988, 16 in 2000, 39 in 2004, and 41 in 2008.In addition, the number of womenrepresentatives in local assemblies hasincreased from 0.9% in 1991, to 3.4% in 2002,and 14.5% in 2006, but the percentage ofwomen’s participation is still lower than that ofmen.<Table 7>Women Elected in General and LocalElections67.7% who passed the higher civilexamination for foreign affairs were womenin 2007Recently, Korean women’s administrativeparticipation is increasing at high ranks. Thepercentages of successful women candidatesamong public service personnel employmentexamination were 67.7% in the higher civilexamination for foreign affairs, 49.0% in thehigher civil examination for nationaladministration, and 45.5% in the examinationfor employment lowest-level officials (9thgrade, administration and public peace). Thecomparison between 2007 and 2006 suggests2.7% and 2.0% decrease in women’s portion in85GSPR 2008 Vol.1National Assembly Local CouncilTotal F % Total F %1971 204 5 2.5 - - -1973 146 12 8.2 - - -1978 154 1 0.6 - - -1981 276 9 3.3 - - -1985 276 8 2.9 - - -1988 299 6 2.0 - - -1991 - - - 5,169 48 0.91992 299 3 1.0 - - -1995 - - - 5,756 128 2.21996 299 9 3.0 - - -1998 - - - 4,179 97 2.32000 273 16 5.9 - - -2002 - - - 4,167 140 3.42004 299 39 13.0 - - -2006 - - - 3,626 525 14.52008 299 41 13.7 - - -YearUnit: Person, %NumberofwomenrepresentativesNumberofwomenrepresentativesSource: Korea National Election Commission, Web DB.Note: Average Monthly Wage=Monthly salary+(Total yearlybonus÷12).Source: Korea Ministry of Labor, Survey Report on Wage Structure,Survey Report on Occupational Wage Survey.
  13. 13. bare examination and examination foremployment lowest-level officials(administration and public peace) respectively,and 4.4%, 31.7% and 7.7% of increase in thehigher civil examination for nationaladministration, the higher civil examination forforeign affairs, and examination foremployment lower-level officials (7th grade),administration and public peace) respectively.Especially, the increasing rate in the highercivil examination for foreign affairs is drastic.<Table8 >Successful Applicant Rate inExamination for AdministrativeKorean GEM 64thamong 93 countriesGDI (Gender-related Development Index)refers to the indicator which is used forrecognizing the degree of gender equalitythough average life expectancy, literacy rate,school attendance rate, and difference in realGDP per se between men and women. Korea isranked as 26th in GDI among 93 nations in2007/2008. Nevertheless, Korea was includedin the lowest group as 64th among 93countries in 2007 in light of GEM whichsuggests the degree of gender equality in theuse of resources. GEM in 2007/2008 declined5 ranks compared with figures in 2005.According to the increase and decrease ofrelated indicators, there were 0.4% and 2%increases in women representatives andwomen’s in professional and technicaloccupations respectively, but women’s wage tomen’s decreased by 0.08. It is noticeable thatgender equality in Korea in development ofhuman resources is improved in terms of the86GSPR 2008 :: Perspective ReviewTotal F % Total F % Total F % Total F % Total F %2001 233 25.3 30 36.7 991 17.5 531 16.8 2,611 39.52002 257 28.4 35 45.7 998 23.9 517 28.4 2,585 50.92003 223 31.8 28 35.7 906 21.0 500 23.0 1,587 50.82004 198 38.4 20 35.0 1,009 24.3 398 28.1 1,510 47.92005 216 44.0 19 52.6 1,001 32.3 575 27.7 1,968 44.92006 233 44.6 25 36.0 994 37.7 991 25.4 2,398 47.52007 251 49.0 31 67.7 1,011 35.0 641 33.1 2,522 45.5YearUnit: Person, %AdministrationServiceCategoryForeignService5thCategoryJudicialExaminationAdmin.&SafetyService7thCategoryAdmin.&SafetyService9th,CategorySource: Korea Ministry of Government Administration, Yearbook ofMinistry of Government Administration, Civil Service Commission,Korea Ministry of Public Administration and Security.
  14. 14. result from GDI and GEM, but there is noimprovement in the utilization of humanresources.<Table 9>Gender-related Development IndexRank in Korea<Table 10>Gender Empowerment Index Rank inKorea87GSPR 2008 Vol.1Note: GEM member countries – 70 nations in 2003, 78 nations in2004, 80 nations in 2004, and 93 nations in 2007.Source: UNDP. Human Development Report (2003, 2005, and 2007).Note: GDI member counties – 143 nations in 2000, 144 nations in2005, and 157 nations in 2007.Source: UNDP. Human Development Report (2000, 2005, and 2007).Female Male Female Male Female Male Female Male2000 30 76.2 69.0 95.9 99.0 84 94 8,342 18,529 312005 27 80.6 73.3 99.9 99.9 87 100 11,698 24,167 282007 26 81.5 74.3 99.9 99.9 89 102 12,531 31,476 26Year GDI RankUnit: Person, %Unit: Rank, Year, $Life Expectancy at Birth(years)Adult Literacy Rate (%)Combined Gross EnrolmentRatio for Primary, Secondaryand Tertiary Education (%)Estimated EarnedIncome(PPP US$)HDI Rank2003 63 5.9 5 34 0.462005 59 13.0 6 39 0.482007 64 13.4 8 39 0.40Year GEM RankSeats in parliament held bywomen (%)Female legislators, seniorofficials and managers (%)Female professional andtechnical workers (%)Ratio of estimated female tomale earned income

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