The changing role of NGOs in Korea

Civic groups are generally seen as the biggest contributors to the development of the Korean society, according to a poll cited here. I also spotted this quote in an interesting article today on the changing role of non-governmental organizations:

After parting themselves from the country’s labor movement during the 1990s, most of Korea’s major civic groups have devoted themselves to comprehensive social issues such as economic disparity, environmental problems, corruption and gender equality.

However, the advancement in communication, such as the Internet and wireless telephony, created an environment that allows people easier ways to express their ideas and combine efforts to advocate their rights. As a result, a large number of civic organizations have emerged in recent years, continuing to expand their arguments to a wider range of issues closely related to the everyday lives of individuals.

``The growth in telecommunications and Internet penetration, as well as the lively activist culture at the levels of regional communities or individuals, has quickly changed the landscape in civic activism,’’ said Lee Dong-hyun, a member from the Citizens’ Coalition for Democratic Media, one of the new breed of civic organizations focusing on media reform.

Read more here.


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