National or inter-national? South Korean economic development model and foreign influence

Natalia Matveeva (London)

The economic development strategy conceived in South Korea in the 1960s is commonly viewed as unique and truly ‘national’, a successful example of an ingenious model for economic modernization. Challenging this perception, this paper aims to showcase the inter-national traits and influences in Korean ‘national strategy’ and its connectivity to the world economic thought at the time of its conception.

Based on primary sources from Korea and the USA, this paper explores the influences of Japan, the US, West Germany, the socialist bloc and other countries on the creation of the South Korean development model. Studying how foreign experience was transplanted and adapted on Korean soil, it argues that foreign influence and input cannot be disregarded when assessing the South Korean ‘economic miracle’, and suggests that while it contributed to the model which allowed Korea to successfully overcome the crises of the 1960s, it also contributed to the crisis which put the South Korean economy almost on the brink of collapse in 1997-1998.


Natalia Matveeva is a PhD candidate in Modern East Asian History at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) University of London. She got her BA with double major in economics and international economic relations and East Asian studies from Moscow State University and her MA in Korean Studies from SOAS. Her current research is focused on the early stages of nation-building in North and South Korea and assesses and compares the strategies of economic and political development implemented by the two countries in the broader regional and international historical context.

Cite this abstract: Natalia Matveeva, „National or inter-national? South Korean economic development model and foreign influence“, in:, 12/02/2021, (last seen: date).

This abstract announces an article of the same name, which will be published in an anthology. The anthology with the working title “Economic crises as an opportunity? Working life between cooperation and regulation in a historical perspective” will be published by Franz Steiner Verlag. It has the intention to summarize the latest research results around the topic “Humanization of Work” in a scientific publication.

OpenEdition schlägt Ihnen vor, diesen Beitrag wie folgt zu zitieren:
Mirjam Lober (12. Februar 2021). National or inter-national? South Korean economic development model and foreign influence. HUMANISIERUNG DER ARBEIT REVISITED. Abgerufen am 24. Juli 2024 von

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