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Business and Labour in Korea: Chaebols, their Association and Industrial Relations

Jun, In (Yeungnam University, South Korea)
Sheldon, Peter (University of New South Wales, Australia)
Kwon, Seung-Ho (University of New South Wales, Australia)

978 1 138 84755 2
List price(s):
160.00 USD
95.00 GBP

Publication date:
31 December 2018

Full description: 

South Korea has rapidly emerged as a world economic power, within which chaebols - large family-controlled business groups, including such well known names as Hyundai and Samsung - have been the dominant economic force, with a powerful influence in politics. This book, covering the period from the 1960s to the present, traces the impact the chaebols have had on the development of South Korea's industrial relations system, a system which is quite different from other industrial relations systems in East Asia. It shows how, although the various chaebols have had their own styles of management, often determined by the outlook of the founders and by differing circumstances, they came together in 1970 to form the Korea Employers' Federation (KEF). This organisation, as the book demonstrates, has taken on a life of its own, playing a key role in the industrial relations system which has well developed practices for avoiding conflict. The book also relates the chaebols and developments in industrial relations to changing political circumstances, from military dictatorships to democracy, to a world where there prevailed more autonomous governments, more militant unions, and more pluralistic and even radical industrial relations.

Table of contents: 

1. Introduction Part 1: Chaebols and Industrial Relations under Military Regimes, 1961-87 2. Chaebols', Military Regimes and Economic Growth 3. Labour Command and Control within the Chaebols Part 2: The Chaebols Look Beyong the Firm: Formation of the KEF 4. Thinking of the Future: Industrial Conflict and the Formation of the KEA, 1970 5. The KEF, Survival and Development, 1970 to 1987 Part 3: Chaebols under Democracy, 1987 to 1997 6. Chaebols `Discover' Industrial Relations under Democracy 7. Chaebols and the KEF's Internal Dynamics 8. Chaebols, the KEF and Challenge and Flux in Industrial Relations Part 4: Chaebols and the New Global Order, 1998-2011 9. Re-making Industrial Relations after the East Asian Financial Crisis 10. Organisational Continuity amid Flux: Chaebols and the KEF 11. The KEF, Tripartism and the Reshaping of Industrial Relations 12. Conclusion


In Jun is an Associate Professor in the School of Business, Yeungnam University, South Korea Peter Sheldon is an Associate Professor in the School of Management, University of New South Wales, Australia Seung-Ho Kwon is the Deputy Executive Director of the Korea Research Institute, University of New South Wales, Australia




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