Professor Lee will examine why South Korean labor unions have engaged in militant activism since the country's transition to democracy in 1987. This situation contrasts with Taiwan, to which Korea's economic and political development is otherwise very similar. Professor Lee will argue that the militant unionism reflects the weakness of Korea's democratic institutions, particularly its political parties.
Professor Lee received her doctoral degree in political science from Duke University and has been teaching at the State University of New York at Binghamton since 2006. Her research has appeared in Studies in Comparative International Studies, Critical Asian Studies, Asian Survey, Korean Observer, and Asia-Pacific Forum. Her book, tentatively entitled Democratic Politics and Labor Activism in East Asia, is forthcoming from Stanford University Press in 2011.