S-Space College of Social Sciences (사회과학대학) Institute for Social Development and Policy Research (사회발전연구소) Development and Society Development and Society Vol.44 No.1/3 (2015)
Introduction to the Special Issue: A Comparative Perspective of Union-CSO Coalitions in the East Asian Countries
- Suzuki, Akira; Lee, Byounghoon
- Issue Date
- Institute for Social Development and Policy Research, Center for Social Sciences, Seoul National University
- Development and Society, Vol.44 No.2, pp. 191-198
- The special issue of Development and Society examines the historical development and current state of coalitions between labor unions and civil society organizations (CSOs) in South Korea (hereafter Korea), Taiwan, and Japan. It focuses on the possibilities and limits of union-CSO coalitions as ways to (re-)establish the labor movements as a counterweight to state, business, and market domination of civil society. Although the three East Asian countries have different trajectories of political and economic development in the postwar period (for example, Korea and Taiwan experienced authoritarian state rule; Japan did not), their labor movements and civil societies share characteristics. They each have decentralized union organizations and civil societies whose spheres of a activity tend to be constrained by the state, political parties, and business corporations. The special issue consists of five articles on union-CSO coalitions in Korea, Japan, and Taiwan. Three articles are about historical evolution of such coalitions in each country, while two articles are on notable contemporary cases of the coalition observed in Korea and Taiwan. It is a meaningful attempt to examine union-CSO coalitions among these non-Western countries, particularly from the comparative and historical perspective, in that the existing English literature has given little attention to the relationship between labor unions and civil society organizations outside countries in the West.