The Future of Korean Democracy: 2022 Presidential Election Analysis

(L to R) South Korea's presidential candidates, Lee Jae-myung, Ahn Cheol-soo, Sim Sang-jung, and Yoon Suk-yeol pose for photograph ahead of a televised presidential debate for the March 9 presidential election at MBC studio on February 21, 2022 in Seoul.

The Future of Korean Democracy

Expert analysis and commentary on Korea's 2022 presidential election and the state of Korean democracy from the Korea Program at Shorenstein APARC

South Korea's Democracy in Crisis | New Book Now Out

Co-edited by Stanford University's Gi-Wook Shin and Yonsei University's Ho-Ki Kim, this new volume from APARC traces the roles of illiberalism, populism, and polarization in the decline of Korean democracy and their implications for Korean society and politics.

South Korea's Democracy in Crisis | Trailer

South Korea's Democracy in Crisis | Trailer

Analysis and Commentary

Yoon Suk-yeol speaks during a press conference

In Troubled Waters: South Korea’s Democracy in Crisis

APARC and Korea Program Director Gi-Wook Shin analyzes the decline of South Korea’s democracy and the historic tasks facing the Yoon administration as it prepares to set sail.
Young people protesting in South Korea

South Koreans Are Rethinking What China Means for Their Nation

Souring perceptions of China might pose a foreign policy challenge for the new administration in Seoul, indicates a new study led by Gi-Wook Shin.
Yoon Seok-Youl

What Korea's Election Means for Its Democracy

The 2022 presidential election holds significant sociopolitical implications for the future of Korean democracy amid recent trends of democratic backsliding, writes Gi-Wook Shin.

Featured Media

What Lies Ahead for Korea's New President? Post-Election Analysis | Jae-ho Yeom & Eunjung Lim

What Lies Ahead for Korea's New President? Post-Election Analysis | Jae-ho Yeom & Eunjung Lim

Gi-Wook Shin Skeptical Korea's New President Can Bring Unity to the Country | CNBC Squawk Box Asia

Gi-Wook Shin Skeptical Korea's New President Can Bring Unity to the Country | CNBC Squawk Box Asia

South Korea Chooses a New President | Presented by the Center for American Progress

South Korea Chooses a New President | Presented by the Center for American Progress

In the News


APARC and Korea Program Director Gi-Wook Shin weighs in on South Korea's presidential race and its implications for Korean democracy
 

President Yoon Says He's Late Learner on Gender Equality – The Korea Times, May 29, 2022

Which Yoon Should Biden Expect at the Upcoming South Korea-U.S. Summit? – The Diplomat, May 17, 2022

Preserving and Promoting South Korea's Democracy and Freedom under New President Yoon Suk-yeol – Arirang TV, May 12, 2022

Yoon Suk-yeol, the Anti-feminist President Who Wants to Bring South Korea Back to the "Conservative Norm" – France Info, May 10, 2022

From Kim-Trump Summits to Missile Tests: The Failures of South Korea's Moon – AFP, May 5, 2022

Blue House Brawl: South Korea Spars Over Where Next President Will Live – The Wall Street Journal, March 26, 2022

Blue House Changes Color – Caixin Media, March 14, 2022 (download article)

Yoon’s Victory Brings Sigh of Relief in US, Japan – Asia Times, March 11, 2022

South Korea’s New President Weaponizes Anti-Feminism to Win Election – The New Statesman, March 10, 2022

South Korea’s new president could change the country’s relations with U.S. and China – CNBC, March 10, 2022

Stanford Professor Says He's Skeptical South Korea's New President Can Bring Unity to the country – CNBC Squawk Box Asia, March 9, 2022

Anti-Feminist Political Novice: South Korea's New President Yoon – AFP, March 9, 2022

Mudslinging in Seoul – Der Spiegel, March 8, 2022 (download article)

Young Voters Unimpressed with Presidential Candidates – Chosun Ilbo, March 8, 2022

'Sexism Exists': S.Korea Feminist Presidential Candidate's Lonely Crusade – AFP, March 7, 2022

Experts Urge Caution Against Taking Advantage of Anti-China Sentiment for Election – The Korea Times, March 7, 2022

Bitter Mood Has Given South Korean Elections a Nickname –  Radio Sweden, March 7, 2022

South Korea’s Presidential Candidates Face Balancing Act Amid Rising Anti-China Sentiment – The Guardian, March 6, 2022

What South Korea’s Election Means for Biden and Democracy – The National Interest, March 6, 2022

South Korea’s Raucous Politics: Presidential Election Defined by Mudslinging and Scandal​ – Financial Times, March 3, 2022

South Korea Votes, Beijing Watches – American Purpose, March 2, 2022

Anti-Chinese Sentiments Surge Among People in Their 20s and 30s – Dong-A Ilbo, March 1, 2022

Anti-China Sentiment Runs High in South Korea During Beijing Winter Olympics – The Straits Times, February 18, 2022

Outlook for Korea’s Presidential Election – Arirang TV, February 10, 2022

The Beijing Winter Olympics in the Eyes of Koreans – VOA Chinese, February 10, 2022

Anti-Chinese Sentiment Raised Over the Beijing Olympics Could Affect China Policy – KBS, February 10, 2022

Anti-Chinese Sentiment May Change China Policy in the Next Korean Government – Yonhap News Agency, February 9, 2022

3D mockup cover of the APARC volume 'South Korea's Democracy in Crisis'

New Book Out June 2, 2022: South Korea's Democracy in Crisis

In this new volume, experts trace the sources of illiberalism in Korea, examine the politicization of its party system, civil society, and the courts, and consider the roles of inequality, education, and social media in the country’s democratic decline.

Analyzing South Korea's Democratic Decay
  • Analyzing South Korea's Democratic Decay
  • Article in the Journal of Democracy
  • The Impossible State Podcast
  • Shindonga magazine op-ed

Analyzing South Korea's Democratic Decay

Click the tabs below for research and commentary by APARC and Korea Program Director Gi-Wook Shin on South Korea’s democratic backsliding.

Article in the Journal of Democracy

In the Journal of Democracy (Vol. 31, July 2020), Gi-Wook Shin analyzes the symptoms and causes underlying Korea’s democratic backsliding.

The Impossible State Podcast

Gi-Wook Shin joins Victor Cha and Andrew Schwartz on The Impossible State, a podcast by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), to discuss his Journal of Democracy article, "South Korea's Democratic Decay."

Shindonga magazine op-ed

"Korean democracy is sinking under the guise of the rule of law," writes Gi-Wook Shin in the South Korean magazine Shindonga.

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