The Quality of Life in Korea: Comparative and Dynamic Perspectives

Economic growth for ecological conversions: South Korean case
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Some plants and even companies will disappear in the process. The interaction of investment and technological change constitutes a major guide to future policy. The earlier distinctions between capital investment and technological change as separate causes of growth need to be modified in favor of a view that sees them as largely parts of the same process.

It is in this broad sense that technological change probably has been the main cause of as much as 70—80 percent of U. Technological innovation involves managing the reduction of uncertainty—both technical and commercial economic. It is for that reason that. It seems evident from the worldwide slowdown since the early s that managements and engineers everywhere have been confronted by much greater uncertainty about the business environment and have been compelled to expend much effort in dealing with it.

This uncertainty included not only the energy crisis but also adverse macroeconomic policies by many nations, the collapse of the Bretton Woods fixed currency exchange rate system, the Vietnam War and its consequences, inflation and inflationary expectations, new sources of competition, and other changed circumstances from the relative tranquility of the earlier postwar years. Thus, to improve the erratic and unsatisfactory growth rate of the U. These all interact with each other and are complementary.

But they will not be easy to obtain without a favorable economic climate for long-term steady growth.

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Conversely, the two sectors showed opposite directions from the diversity perspective. Moreover, some seminal studies [ 12 — 14 ] have provided insight to understand the concept of technology convergence, and regarded it as a process that occurs largely to solve problems with solutions that are beyond the scope of a specific technology field. Technological paradigms and technological trajectories: a suggested interpretation of the determinants and directions of technical change. Beyond the basemap of science: mapping multiple structures in research portfolios: evidence from Hungary. Quality of life of residents living near industrial estates in Singapore. Brain Res. International Journal of Public Opinion Research 15 4 :

A most notable change in the past two decades has been the extraordinarily rapid diffusion of technology to many other countries, including those with wage rates a great deal lower than those of the United States. A century ago, transfer of technology from one country to another took place over many years; today it may be a few years or even months. But now that industrial technology has taken root in many new places, many countries no longer depend on the technical progress of just a few industrialized nations; they have become serious new competitors.

This is a historic upheaval. Such diffusion and its consequences pose immense new difficulties as well as opportunities for the United States. It has posed particular problems for managements brought up in the earlier postwar years when the United States had the world markets as well as a pent-up domestic market to ensure ample aggregate demand for anything that could be made—even cars with no more than novel tailfins.

Many, but by no means all, have coped quite well, such as by spreading their operations across international boundaries, and thus insulating themselves against the varying national policies that affect operations in particular countries. The recent cost-cutting efforts of many managements display a sharp awareness of the challenges from competitors.

Such efforts suggest the presence of significant long-run strategic vision of how their companies must grow and compete. They must now do even better. Those companies that have not or do not recognize this will either be taken over or disappear. Indeed, in the past, the. Now, the greater number of international competitors poses greater challenges to the United States. Markets for goods and services are now global. Many countries are competing vigorously with the United States in advanced technologies such as electronics, space, nuclear power, chemicals, and autos, producing products that often are of better quality, greater reliability, and lower price.

The financial system of the world has become international, while the individual monetary, industrial, fiscal, trade, and labor systems remain national. American wage rates have traditionally been high, although exact comparisons depend significantly on the exchange rates, productivity rates, and inflation rates. Many countries such as Brazil, South Korea, Mexico, and Taiwan still have much lower labor costs and are increasing their productivity faster in a catch-up process.

If the United States is to maintain a higher-wage economy, it must raise its growth rate, its productivity, and its rate of innovation. Clearly, the United States is no longer a largely isolated economy and has lost the power to control its destiny virtually unilaterally. Its growth rate now depends to a much greater degree on its ability to compete successfully in international markets, especially in manufacturing, the most exposed.

Despite the fact that manufacturing now employs only 20 percent of the work force and has maintained over the long term about a 22 percent share of real GNP, it is exceptionally important to the U. It provides the major component two-thirds of the foreign trade of the United States, which consists of about 8 percent of GNP as exports and 12 percent as imports.

The combined value of these two figures was only 8 percent in The manufacturing sector purchases a large part of the output of the service sector, which reciprocates. Exporters a. Productivity improvement in manufacturing has been historically higher than that of the service sector, contributing heavily to the overall growth and wealth of the economy and helping hold inflation down.

It is because of these features that concerns exist about the ability of U. Nevertheless, spurred by this competition, American manufacturing has been improving its productivity markedly. Labor productivity grew by more than 3 percent per year between and , and is still growing at close to that rate, in contrast with a 1. True, Japan experienced a 5. A highly significant long-term trend is the increasing impact of the information age on the entire economy, which is changing the nature of manufacturing itself.

In fact, this new information-processing industry, when joined with the new technologies of automation, represents at least as fundamental a change in the economy as electrification did in the early twentieth century. It may well be the precursor of a new Industrial Revolution. The impact of this new industry on the rest of the economy is only beginning to be felt, and it will doubtless be some time before its effect on productivity improvement is fully realized. Such lags are not at all unusual in the case of such fundamental innovations.

Thus, in the early decades of the twentieth century, business sector productivity failed to grow significantly, at a time when many technological changes were occurring. Not until the early s did the productivity increases begin to occur. The introduction of the assembly line and the electrical motor produced 20 years of upheaval in industrial organization and management strategies.

It was the combination of associated institutional changes including educational, legal, and financial systems and entrepreneurial creativity that eventually led to rapid productivity growth in the business sector. In the process, not only institutions and organizations had to change; a great deal of existing capital was rendered obsolete. The energy cost changes in the s had a similar effect. Coupled with this transition are the new technologies now becoming available. The next great wave of technological innovation is rolling in—in physics-, chemistry-, and biology-based industries.

These new technologies can be rapidly employed to introduce higher value-added products and services, which is a sensible prescription for America in a world that offers increasing competition from economies with much lower wage rates. Higher value added means higher value added per worker. The point is that sectors where each worker has a high value added are sectors where there are extensive inputs of capital per worker—both tangible and nontangible capital. In such sectors even a high wage still constitutes only a small part of the total cost of production.

Only in this manner can the outflow of U. There is one essential prerequisite for an economy to succeed with a strategy such as that proposed here: Capital in all its forms must be abundant, cheap, and of increasing quality. This in turn means pursuit of policies that encourage high rates of savings and capital formation and enhanced education, training, and research and development.

This, as noted above, is exactly what the Japanese have been doing, and they have been doing it. In summary, the American manufacturing industry must now move even more rapidly into higher value-added, more technologically sophisticated products made by more technologically sophisticated processes within more flexible organizational structures, and away from commodities that can be made more cheaply abroad, if American living standards are to be preserved and improved. American manufacturing must become more competitive by becoming more technological, which also means more capital- and skill-intensive; and the service sectors, especially those connected to information technology, must do the same.

Commodity manufacture can be successful, however, where the large domestic market permits the use of favorable plant scale, especially if coupled with advanced technology. On the other hand, flexible automated manufacturing may reduce the economies of scale and aid smaller companies in their ability to compete.

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Even where the bulk of the value added is in marketing, sales, and distribution, large amounts of capital are still required with close feedback to manufacturing. This formulation of the American imperative reflects a basic shift in international trade from the situation where countries and industries could count on long-term stable comparative advantages to a dynamic state, in which comparative advantages are constantly being altered.

There is still vast ignorance in American society about the forces which fuel growth, as well as antitechnology influences especially noteworthy today in biotechnology. The public must be made aware of what really is at stake in a technologically intensive competitive world economy and, particularly, that competitiveness is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for economic growth.

It is not an end in itself, but a means to improve long-term growth rates, the American standard of living, and quality of life. What else can government do effectively? Government cannot decree a successful growth strategy, but it can better coordinate its various policies if it understands the real goals involved and promotes the infrastructure that the private microeconomy requires for innovation. Some regulatory activities are essential, although they can also be inhibiting. Foremost among the services that governments can provide is a better educational system.

Services are the key to Korea’s future growth, employment, and prosperity

Although many skilled workers of today may not be able to adapt well to the new technologies, the younger generation can be trained to be far more. But continuing education is becoming more important everywhere. Although there is good reason to be skeptical about the ability of government to make intelligent decisions in specific markets, there is a great deal that government can do in providing a more favorable environment for business decision making. If the roller coaster economic experience of the last 20 years has proved anything, it is that long-term real growth is brought about by change and improvement in the microeconomy.

A macroeconomic program, directed at controlling economic fluctuations by fiscal and monetary policies, primarily affects short-term growth. Nevertheless, some macroeconomic policies, such as high interest rates and therefore high cost of capital, may have a long-lasting impact on the microeconomy, for better or worse. It is important to recognize this interaction in setting macroeconomic policy, so as to improve long-term growth prospects. This is particularly important with respect to the volatility of macroeconomic policies.

The complementary and interrelated nature of capital investment used by well-trained people and based on the latest technology has been argued in this paper. Unfortunately, the American savings rate from which such investments can be made is low in comparison with the rates of its principal trade competitors in East Asia. Boskin has shown that the savings rate of the Japanese, depending on how it is measured, is from two to nearly three times that of Americans Boskin and Roberts, It is estimated that net domestic U.

If the cost of capital in Japan is half of that in the United States, as it appears to be—and it is much more abundant—then their horizon for decision making can be twice as long! This is the real Japanese comparative advantage, and is exemplified in Figure 2 , which shows the resulting high productivity growth. This high savings rate is a postwar phenomenon and was carefully designed by encouraging tax-free savings and other measures. In addition, Japan has a high educational base and a number of unique societal institutions that shelter firms against risks and allow them to undertake large, long-term projects.

By contrast, postwar U. In recent years, this has been accomplished by a fiscal policy of. Gross domestic product includes personal, business, and government savings. Department of the Treasury Although the dollar is much weaker against the Japanese yen and the German mark since the intervention by the finance ministers of the five major Western countries, it is still almost unchanged against the currencies of many American trading partners, such as those of Canada and South Korea.

Debt has accumulated at all levels at an accelerating pace, so that it now costs companies nearly 40 percent of cash flow to service debt versus 30 percent a decade ago and less than 20 percent in the s. Interest on government debt has risen from 7 percent of public spending in to 14 percent today. Consumer installment debt service is now nearly 18 percent of personal income versus 12 percent in Total public and private debt in was more than percent of GNP, up from percent in and percent in Some of this debt has gone into mergers, acquisitions, takeovers, restructures, and leveraged buyouts.

Most have the effect of substituting debt for equity, a tactic favored by the tax laws, which allows deducibility of debt interest by corporations but not dividends. The U. Treasury in effect pays the premium that the stockholders of undervalued companies receive. Sometimes the resulting company becomes more effi-. More often, only the existing shareholders benefit in the short run and almost everyone else loses. The large debt cited above has not gone sufficiently into productive investment but has generated excess liquidity in the financial markets.

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Inflation in the s is a financial phenomenon. The United States is now an international debtor, and the longer the deficit continues, the greater the trade surplus will have to be in the future to finance the debt. The danger of recession and the consequent increase in the budget deficit is all the greater because government has already used up most of its fiscal and monetary stimuli.

Furthermore, foreigners will at some point cease financing the American deficits. In the excess of spending over domestic production was more than 3 percent of the gross domestic product, and virtually all was financed by borrowing from abroad. This is unsustainable, and when foreign lending diminishes, the standard of living will inevitably decline: Capital for investment will become scarce because of the low net savings rate. Faced with such seemingly intolerable conditions, the government would be sorely tempted to monetize the debt, and with it, reduce its foreign debt while restoring price inflation as a potentially less painful way to reduce consumption.

History suggests that, although there may be some favorable short-term effects, for example in employment, the long-term effects may be very unfavorable.

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Inflationary expectations produce very short-term horizons indeed. There was another side to this pro-consumption policy in the late s and s, when the surge of the baby boomers and women entering the job market crested. Because capital was relatively scarce and expensive and these new less-skilled workers were relatively cheap, the baby boomers and women flooded into the service industries, particularly into smaller companies, which play a vital role in new job creation. The result was an extraordinary boom in jobs Table 2 , wherein the United States did much better than its principal rivals.

Europe still has much higher unemployment because of its greater labor and institutional rigidities. But, of course, the productivity of the American economy as a whole suffered by comparison, because policies were not in place to promote more of both jobs and productivity. In effect, American manufacturing remained competitive throughout the s by keeping real. EEC a. EEC b. The corresponding inflation masked the declining competitiveness because prices were raised by firms faster than real wages were adjusted.

So, from the early s on, the American manufacturing strategy of the s was ended by the strong dollar; firms were exposed to world deflationary trends and could not mask inefficiencies. The process of recovery, which entails adopting new technologies to regain a competitive edge, will be both expensive and perhaps even destructive of some jobs, of companies, and of certain industries that cannot realistically expect to restore their lost competitiveness.

However, the demographics are also changing—the baby boom is over. The labor force grew at a rate of 2. Meanwhile, managements invested heavily for almost two decades in information technology, which will be required as skilled labor becomes scarcer and more expensive, rather than in assembly line capital.

As a result, the ratio of capital to labor rose rapidly in the information sector, while capital per industrial worker stagnated. Nevertheless, the effect of information technology investment shows up in the recovery of manufacturing productivity in the s. The service sector should follow. Because foreign capital inflows of the past must be paid for by exports, this policy will require a major increase in U. A trade gap means that a country spends more than it earns, which is identical to saying that it invests more than it saves.

If prudent noninflationary long-range macroeconomic policy is to be followed, this would require a tighter fiscal policy reduced dissaving by governments and a looser monetary policy to supply the money for increased growth at lower interest rates, combined with sensible regulatory and legal policies and a tax system that favors investment. Such a tax system would more nearly resemble that of the Japanese in allowing essentially tax-free saving and lowering the cost of funds. Most economists concur that a consumption tax system of suitable progressivity would favor a higher savings and investment rate.

The Tax Reform Bill is not such a system and will in fact probably increase the cost of funds. A stepwise regression is performed to investigate the overall life satisfaction and the extent that QOL is determined by identified domains. Results show that traffic, mobility, housing and infrastructure are the most important aspects of QOL which affect the overall life satisfaction of the residents of the surveyed deteriorated neighbourhood.

Also a negative relationship was found between overall satisfaction and private life. The findings of the study also show that the three physical indicators used by the TRO for identifying the deteriorated areas are not adequate to address the deterioration issues. Other physical and socio economic aspects which are incorporated with different QOL dimensions also affect the overall life satisfaction, which have to be addressed in planning and policy making to upgrade quality of life for people in deteriorated neighbourhoods.

Urban deteriorated contexts which have occupied vast areas of Tehran Metropolis need to be considered by planners in planning and policy making processes to provide better life condition for its residents. In fact, considering multidimensional and complex problems within these areas, they have to be recognized in order to provide better plans to upgrade deterioration issues. Tehran Renovation Organization is the main planning body in city which is responsible for deterioration issues and prepares and implements community renovation and regeneration plans to upgrade the deteriorated areas of the city.

Based on the definition provided by the TRO, urban deteriorated areas are defined just by three physical indicators of fine grain, lack of permeability and durability Tehran Renovation Organization while other physical, social, environmental, economic and other issues are ignored. Considering the definition of deteriorated areas provided by TRO, there are many criticisms towards these indicators and different renovation experiences done by TRO imply the inappropriateness of the mentioned indicators in identification of deteriorated areas within the city Haeri Nowadays there are many new-built apartments, which have small plot sizes.

In addition, many apartments are built which may not be considered as durable by structural engineering standards.

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Moreover, many parts of Tehran city suffer from lack of proper accessibility. So by adoption of TRO approach all these building types could also be included in the deteriorated area category while they are not. Furthermore, adopted indicators by TRO cover only the physical aspects of QOL and other dominant aspects of life in the deteriorated areas, such as insecurity, unemployment, pollution, lack of affordability are ignored Kamanroudi So, these three indicators are not sufficient to define deterioration and many TRO rehabilitation actions by application of these three defined indicators simply show the inappropriateness of TRO approach for addressing the deterioration issues of the city.

This paper is organized as follows: first, literature about QOL, deteriorated areas and their problems have been briefly reviewed. Then by use of confirmatory factor analysis and stepwise regression analysis the most important aspects of QOL have been identified and explained in the latter parts of the paper. Relevant literatures show that the concept of QOL has been investigated from different fields which implies its multidimensional nature Eby et al. In fact due to multidisciplinary nature of QOL, it has been investigated more than before from different fields of geography, sociology, environment and economy Li and Weng ; Tuan Seik ; Wish In fact as QOL results can be used and addressed by urban planners and policy makers in resource allocation and development plans Nooraie and Tabibian ; Ibrahim and Chung ; Tesfazghi et al.

According to literatures, there is no one single, strict, universally accepted definition for QOL Apparicio et al. Thus, it could be seen that the concepts of liveability and quality of place are sometimes used to define QOL Li and Weng Also studies by Rod McCrea et al. To investigate the concept of QOL, objective and subjective approaches have been used, which are called objective and perceptual perspectives Nooraie and Tabibian ; Tesfazghi et al.

Objective approach reflects tangible condition of environment Das , while subjective measures are referred to individual appraisal of objective condition of their life Royuela et al. Considering the two mentioned perspectives in QOL studies, there are different criticisms toward these approaches. According to Lee , QOL study should be assessed in subjective approach and by asking people directly about their life conditions. As subjective QOL is referred to individual opinion, context plays an important role in their opinion toward their living environment Marans In fact people in different contexts by having different conditions, have different concern about different aspects of life.

Consequently overall life satisfaction in different contexts is expressed by different components of life, which have to be recognized to upgrade quality of life for people. Considering importance of context in QOL researches, urban deteriorated area as a noticeable context where people suffer from different aspects that affect their life, has been surveyed in this research. According to literatures, there is no one single and agreed definition for deteriorated areas. Basically depressed, decayed, degeneration, erosion and blighted all refer to urban deteriorated areas where people deal with different issues.

In fact, each of these concepts covers different dimensions of deterioration Tiscali Encyclopaedia So different definitions for deteriorated areas imply its multidimensional nature and non-physical problems exist in these areas. However it can be seen that while deterioration covers different dimensions, according to TRO it is recognized by three mere physical indicators of fine grain, lack of permeability, and durability, and other aspects such as environmental, social, transportation and economic aspects are not addressed.

Considering the above-mentioned definition of deterioration, there are many criticisms towards these indicators. Different applied renovation experiences by TRO also show the inadequacy of the mentioned indicators Haeri As discussed earlier, QOL is a multifaceted concept which has been studied from different points of view Nooraie and Tabibian ; Eby et al. Consequently different studies have applied different indicators to measure QOL and there is no standard method for selection of indicators Diener According to Malkina-Pykh and Pykh in order to measure QOL; all indicators have to meet the following requirements:.

Considering different QOL studies, to select appropriate indicators which best depict QOL condition in the selected study area, relevant literatures have been reviewed. Tehran metropolis located in Tehran province of Iran is consisted of 22 districts with different physical and socio economic characteristics. Based on three mentioned indicators by TRO, hectares of district 16 of Tehran is identified as deteriorated areas where Javadieh is one of its neighbourhoods that has the highest deterioration rate.

Javadieh neighbourhood covers an area of Javadieh neighbourhood is located in north-west of district 16 and suffer from high deterioration and deprivation. This neighbourhood is adjacent to major urban spaces of Velayat Park and the Tehran railway station. However as Javadieh is bordered by a major highway, it has been marginalized and this has added to its deprivation and to socio economic and physical problems, which have been investigated in the current study. According to official census, in Javadieh has been consisted of 52, people which has been reduced to 47, people in the year High deterioration and lack of facilities are main reasons for this population reduction.

So considering the objectives of this research, javadieh neighbourhood is selected as a case study in this research. Status of deterioration in Javadieh and districts of 16 of Tehran City. Source : Author elaboration based on Tehran municipality of district As this research aims to investigate different aspects of QOL in deteriorated areas, selection of a neighbourhood based on administrative boundaries will not meet this research objective. In fact there are significant varieties within each administrative boundary in city which needs to be studied separately.

Moreover people in two adjacent administrative boundaries might have similarities in terms of using same services and facilities. Therefore to identify different aspects of QOL in deteriorated areas, first, three most deteriorated districts in the city were identified: districtes 2, 4, and 16 according to the TRO definition. Then considering the deterioration rate and also other social and economic aspects as well as aspects of deterioration, district 16 was chosen for the purposes of this study. District 16 consists of 7 neighbourhoods with different status of deterioration.

This table shows that Javadieh has the highest deterioration rate. After selection of Javadieh as the case study, the sample size for this neighbourhood has to be identified. To avoid ambiguity in questions, to increase number of collected questionnaires and to extract main issues in deteriorated context of Javadieh , structured interviews by application of questionnaires were conducted. Based on to Nunnally , values of 0.

So the test and applied questions could be considered as reliable. After testing for reliability of provided questions, in order to investigate the satisfaction from different aspects of life, structured interviews were conducted. Respondents who were household heads or housewives were selected randomly and were interviewed from 1st April till 3th August Provided questions have been measured in 5-point Likert scale, where 1 shows total dissatisfaction and 5 shows total satisfaction.

Some of questions are as follow: level of satisfaction from; existing park and green spaces, recreational centres, Cleanliness, quietness, metro and bus stations, fire stations, educational centres, cultural centres, groceries and shopping stores, post offices, personal safety, safety and convenience for women and children, housing facilities and etc.

Also respondents were asked to reflect their level of intention to stay in their neighbourhood, level of communication with their neighbours, supportive friends and so on. Moreover to capture different aspects of QOL, which might have not been considered in the questionnaire, at the end respondents were asked to reflect their comments about their neighbourhood.

While analysing the open question is difficult, but it was useful to understand what truly interests the respondents. Factor analysis is a multivariate analytical technique which is applied to extract a subset of uncorrelated variables called factors that explain the variance observed in the original dataset Everitt and Dun So to select indicators among all applied indicators that best describe QOL, factor analysis is applied. There are two types of factor analysis: confirmatory and explanatory analysis.

In this research as applied indicators are related to specific categories, confirmatory factor analysis were adopted which categorized indicators in 11 domains as follow: satisfaction from social life, personal relationship, environment, housing, infrastructure, access to recreational service, access to educational service, access to daily facilities, access to transportation service, traffic and mobility and total satisfaction.

F1, social life; F2, personal relationship; F3, environment; F4, housing; F5, infrastructure; F6, access to recreational services; F7, traffic and mobility; F8, access to daily facilities; F9, access to transportation services; F10, access to educational services; F11, total satisfaction. According to this table, the selected domains significantly reflect subjective QOL and consequently all 11 domains are used for further analysis.

Based on this criterion, factors with eigenvalues greater than or equal to 1 are accepted as possible sources of variance in the dataset, with the highest priority ascribed to the factor that has the highest eigenvector sum Zebardast As a result, selected indicators in 11 domains are suitable for reflection of QOL components. Total life satisfaction is considered as dependent variable and the extracted components of QOL are considered as predicators: access to educational service C1 , access to daily services C2 , access to recreational services C3 , access to transportation facilities C4 , traffic and mobility C5 , infrastructure C6 , environment C7 , social life C8 , housing C9 and private life C The above equation shows that there is no statistically significant relationship between life satisfaction and access to transportation facility C4 , educational services C1 and social life C8.

In the regression analysis, beta coefficient refers to the degree of importance of each component.

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Since the neighborhood is predominantly occupied by low-income households, therefore their life satisfaction is adversely affected by their expenditure pattern. To analyse collected questionnaires, confirmatory factor analysis has been applied.


The results show that all indicators could be categorized in 11 domains of: Access to daily services, access to educational services, access to recreational services, access to transportation facilities, traffic and mobility, infrastructure, environment, social life, private relation, housing and total satisfaction. To investigate the suitability of extracted factors and their indicators, KMO statistics and Barttlet test have been applied.

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The obtained results reflect the suitability of selected factors and their indicators. So while the results of this study show that deterioration issues in studied neighbourhood are mainly physical, but they are not limited to TRO indicators. In fact QOL is a contextual concept and due to different dominant issues in each neighbourhood, deterioration aspects have to be surveyed in each neighbourhood separately and using general indicators may not be applicable to the whole neighbourhood.

Moreover as Javadieh suffers from high deterioration, lack of sufficient infrastructure and deteriorated houses are other components which have been reflected by the people. National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Social Indicators Research. Soc Indic Res. Published online Jun Samaneh Khaef and Esfandiar Zebardast. Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer. Samaneh Khaef, Phone: , Email: ln. Corresponding author. Accepted May 9.