Consultation without Representation: How the Conservative Governments in Japan and Korea Capitalized on Labor-Inclusionary Institutions against Labor

Translated Titles





尹智煥(Ji-Whan Yun)

Key Words

Consultation without Representation ; Corporatism ; The Conservative Government ; Japan ; Korea ; 沒有代表的商議 ; 統合主義 ; 保守派政府 ; 日本 ; 韓國



Volume or Term/Year and Month of Publication

23卷1期(2019 / 06 / 01)

Page #

215 - 259

Content Language


Chinese Abstract

Scholars have conventionally debated whether neoliberal globalization has resulted in the breakdown of corporatism or its resilience. Beyond this dichotomy, this paper uncovers "consultation without representation" as a new path paved by the conservative governments in Japan and South Korea (hereafter, Korea): Japan's Abe Shinzo cabinet and Korea's Park Geun-hye administration attempted to continue utilizing the format of tripartite consultation in the process of neoliberal reforms without allowing organized labor to represent its interests. This paper argues that the consultation-without- representation path originated from the deliberate strategy that conservative governments used to capitalize on labor-inclusionary tripartite institutions against labor. The governments have kept the tripartite institutions, including Japan's shingikai and Korea's Tripartite Commission, intact to avoid a legislative gridlock that an apparent offensive against corporatism may cause and, furthermore, not to compromise their efforts in moving toward a new moral hegemony over industrial society. However, they have made use of these institutions as a way to weaken the corporatist power of organized labor. Specific patterns of consultation without representation differ between Japan and Korea because the conservative governments developed specialized strategies for utilizing the tripartite institutions on the basis of unique political resources for labor movements in each country. In Japan, the Abe cabinet made use of Rengo's orientation toward policy partnership to confine labor unrest to an institutional boundary. Shingikai functioned as a container that prevented the grievances of Rengo from turning into a society-wide dissidence. Meanwhile, Korea's Park government utilized the radical ideology of labor movements to disqualify them as negotiation partners. The Tripartite Commission was used as a blockade to hinder militant labor movements from influencing the policy-making process. This paper examines the processes of the Worker Dispatch Law revisions in Japan and in Korea to corroborate the argument. This analysis indicates that the conservative rulers have found a new utility of corporatism for neoliberal reforms.

English Abstract

學界對於新自由主義全球化是否會造成統合主義崩潰有不少爭論。對此,本論文提出「沒有代表的商議」之概念,並藉以來理解日本與韓國的保守派政府利用勞、資、政三方商議機制,但在排除勞運組織代表其利益的前提下,進行新自由主義改革。本論文主張「沒有代表的商議」的決策路徑,源於保守派政府蓄意利用接納勞工的制度來對付勞工的策略。日本安倍晉三政府保留了「審議會」(shingikai)、韓國朴槿惠政府保留了「三方委員會」(Tripartite Commission),其目的在於避免因為破壞統合主義而可能出現的立法僵局,同時也為了不要讓這兩個政府建構新道德霸權的努力白費。然而,這兩個政府都試圖削弱勞運在統合主義架構中的力量。日、韓的「沒有代表的商議」路徑其實並不相同,而之所以會有差異,主要是因為兩國政府對於其本國勞運所擁有的特殊政治資源,發展出特定的策略來利用三方商議機制。在日本,安倍政府利用「日本勞動組合總連合會」(RENGO)偏好建立政策夥伴的傾向,將勞工的不滿成功侷限在審議會運作的疆界內。在韓國,朴槿惠政府強調意識型態過於基進的勞運不具與政府談判的資格,同時利用三方委員會阻止好鬥的勞運組織影響政策制訂的過程。本文探討日、韓派遣工人法律的修正,藉以印證本文的主張,同時也發現保守派政府成功利用統合主義機制追求新自由主義改革。

Topic Category 社會科學 > 政治學