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‘S. Korea has poor conflict management among OECD countries’

South Korea’s ability to manage social conflicts ranks near the bottom among members of Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a report by a state-run research institute showed Thursday.

(Yonhap)
(Yonhap)

According to the Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs, Seoul ranked 27th among 34 OECD countries in a social conflict management index.

The index is based on the effectiveness of a country’s administrative system, regulations, corruption management and government spending.

The report showed that the Danish government had the highest capacity to resolve social conflicts, followed by Sweden, Finland, Netherlands and New Zealand. Canada was the sole North American country in the top 10, while the United States was ranked 20th. Mexico finished at the bottom of the list.

Researchers also looked at factors that can cause social conflicts, including limited press freedom and access to information, income inequality and social demographics. South Korea’s potential sources of conflict were rated as the fourth-biggest among the 24 countries the researchers could compile data on. Chile, Israel and Turkey made up the top three, while Finland was the country most-free of conflict factors.

In a comprehensive “social conflict” index combining both conflict factors and conflict-management competence, South Korea was ranked fifth out of 24 countries. Turkey, Greece, Chile and Italy were ranked highest while Scandinavian trio of Denmark, Finland and Sweden were ranked at the bottom.

“Both the social conflict and social conflict-management indices showed a meaningful correlation with economic development, but not conflict factors. This implies that we need to focus more on positive aspects from managing social conflicts,” the report said.

By Yoon Min-sik (minsikyoon@heraldcorp.com)
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