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Decision-Making and Its Specification Process of Food Policy in Korea

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Bark, Dong-Suh; Kihl, Young-Whan

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Graduate School of Public Administration, Seoul National University
Korean Journal of Policy Studies, Vol.3, pp. 92-115
This paper is a translated version of our paper which was published in Korean Journal of Public Administration(Graduate School of Public Administration, Seoul National University 1979, Vol. 17, No. 2), pp. 214-234
Since the Military Revolution in 1961 Korean government oficials have been concerned about
solving problems involved in agricultural or food policy. However, farmers are still kept in a
predicament mainly due to the improperties contained in the policy-making process.
In this study, to define the reasons for the dificulties involved in food policy, policy-making
process as well as its specifications were examined based on the objectives, particapants, and the
contents of food policy in Korea. Because policy-making is largely dependent upon political or administrative
structures, a comparative study was conducted to see the radical changes in food policy
before and after the Yu-shin Revitalizing Reformation in 1972.
Before the Reformation, farmers fell victim for the economic development which was the moral
obligations of the military government. Thus top priority in food policy was set on price stabilitation
rather than achieving self-suficient food supply or boosting farmers' incomes. Likewise government
oficials were more concerned about politics, that is, winning elections. However, political
concern has become less decisive after the Reformation, and administrative power has become more
dominant in terms of policy-making. In addition to such a change, food supply situation has deteriorated
due to poor harvests and the public's improved diet. Therefore, rice price has been maintained
at a considerably high level, and government oficials have become aware of the importance
of boosting farmers' incomes. But there still is a room for improvement on the part of participants.
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