Care Work

Care Work

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Care is fundamental to maintaining our daily lives and society. Through empirical research, we re-examine the socioeconomic value of care, engage in fieldwork, stay in constant communication with care participants from civil society, and seek ways to create a sustainable care society.

Korean society is going through a crisis of care. The burden of childcare, which has been concentrated on women, has led to avoidance of childbirth and disruption of women's careers. The rapid aging of the population due to the world's lowest fertility rate is rapidly increasing the proportion of the elderly in need of care. However, as there is still a shortage of personnel and systems capable of providing quality care, caregivers suffer from low wages and poor working conditions.

Research Objectives

We collect and analyze quantitative and qualitative data on care situations in Korea, focusing on child and elderly care, and through this, we strive to improve our understanding of who is in charge of care, how care is being done, and the quality of life of caregivers. In addition, domestic and foreign academia, agents from civil society, and policy makers will continue to open a forum to discuss policies that are practically helpful in improving the reality of care based on concrete data and voices from the field.


Care Work and the Economy

Along with domestic and foreign economists and social policy scholars from American University and the University of Toronto in Canada, we estimate the value of social and economic contribution of care work, and reveal how investment in building care infrastructure for quality care is related to the economic development of a society. Based on the results of the survey and in-depth interviews, we look into the situation of paid and unpaid care providers and conduct comparative studies with each country.

COVID-19 and work/family balance

We take a look at the impact of COVID-19 and the resulting social distancing on childcare and work/family balance. We examine who was mainly responsible for the care of young children in the situation of closure or school closures, what difficulties they faced, solutions to these problems, and implications for future care policies through surveys and interview data analysis.

Korean society and the introduction of migrant care workers

Currently, there are undergoing discussions to expand the introduction of migrant care workers in countries such as Singapore, Hong Kong, and Canada for the improvement of supply and demand of care workers. Overseas case studies and domestic surveys aim to find out what preparations and designs are needed to not only secure low-cost labor, but also to ensure stable and continuous high-quality care workers.