The State Meets Voluntarism

Stein Ringen, Huck-Ju Kwon, Ilcheong Yi, Taekyoon Kim and Jooha Lee

in The Korean State and Social Policy

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780199734351
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199895373 | DOI:

Series: International Policy Exchange Series

The State Meets Voluntarism

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This chapter deals with how the Korean state has been ruled through a less well-known partnership of government and civil society, in the form of voluntary agencies. Along with a symbiotic partnership with big business, it has also depended from the outset on a second and intrinsic coalition with voluntary agencies, for its effective provision of social services. Over time, voluntary counterparts have been altered, ranging from foreign relief agencies in the period of aid economy, through quasi-voluntary organisations during the period of authoritarian developmentalism, to advocacy civic groups in the post-democratization era. Government has relied on a combination of legal and institutional strategies to tie voluntarism with social accountability for service provision. Voluntary agencies marshaled national networks to challenge or cooperate with state policies. Mixed governance has been shifting, depending on the capacity of voluntarism to influence state policies and the power balance between hard state and soft voluntarism.

Keywords: voluntary agencies; state-voluntary sector links; foreign relief agencies; quasi-voluntary organisations; politicization; mixed governance

Chapter.  9622 words. 

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