Understanding the Drivers of Trust in Government Institutions in Korea

image of Understanding the Drivers of Trust in Government Institutions in Korea

The erosion of public trust challenges government’s capacity to implement policies and carry out reforms. While Korea has achieved and maintained rapid economic growth and development, and performs comparatively well in several existing measures of the quality of public administration, trust in government institutions is relatively low. This pioneering case study presents a measurement and policy framework of the drivers of institutional trust and explores some policy avenues Korea could take to restore trust in public institutions.



Public conflicts and trust

This chapter explores the relationship between public conflicts and institutional trust* in Korea. It emphasizes that the lack of effective mechanisms to prevent and resolve frequent and prolonged public conflicts in Korea may have generated a climate of distrust and animosity. In turn, based on evidence from the OECD-KDI survey, it argues that by endorsing innovative forms of conflict management such as sharing information on controversial policy issues before a decision is made, consulting public opinions early on and incorporating such opinions in the final decision, engaging relevant stakeholders in the creation of solutions, and finding facts jointly with stakeholders, a virtuous cycle transforming relations between citizens and public institutions from adversarial into collaborative could be created.* This chapter was drafted by Dong-Young Kim (KDI School of Public Policy and Management).


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