HomeAsia-Pacific Social Science Reviewvol. 14 no. 1 (2014)

Limitations of Youth Participation in the Policymaking Process in South Korea

Eunsun Cho

Discipline: Social Science



One of the salient human rights is the right to participation. By expressing their opinions, sharing ideas, and being involved in decision-makings, people become free from arbitrary control by others and pursue the best for themselves. Since late 1970s, the global society has increasingly recognized participation as a principal aspect of rights and development of the child as well. Currently, many countries have domestic measures to promote youth participation.

Republic of Korea has recently established a system of youth participation as part of the democratization process. While youth representatives are performing meaningful roles in the policymaking process, several key weaknesses are delaying further success of youth participation.

The obstacles to youth participation identified in this paper arise from fairly common factors, which can be found in any society, especially in countries in the transitional period of democratic development. Hence, a study on the limitations of youth participation system in South Korea would serve as a meaningful datum for other countries that plan to design their own systems.