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Gender Disparity in Workforce Participation | Korea 2021

This post is part of my ongoing series of data briefs featuring insights and reporting in Korea.

Korea is confronting a widening gender divide. This is most clearly seen in the economically active population.

Why it matters: When it comes to gender workforce disparity, Korea has continued to focus on female workforce participation in favor of more controversial metrics such as gender pay gap.

Culture is upstream: Numerous cultural factors contribute to the relatively lower female economic participation rate compared to men.

  • Research has shown that Korea’s male-dominated military service culture has entrenched males in positions of leadership.
  • Korean women are expected (and often prefer) to quit their jobs and careers upon getting pregnant.

Data

The following are a series of data visualizations I made using R with ggplot2. I then made them interactive with ggplotly and uploaded them to plotly for embedding.

Feel free to share/use them! I only ask for attribution plus a link back to my site. I’d love to collaborate as well: contact@hangangmagazine.com

Note: If you click on the graphs, it will take you to plotly where you can interact/zoom/mouseover each bar to see exact numbers.

Econ Active Population | Korea 2021
Employed Population By Gender | Korea 2021
Unemployed Population By Gender | Korea 2021

Once the data are shown by percentage, you can really see the disparity. As I mentioned above, cultural factors, including many I have not mentioned, contribute to the huge disparity in workforce participation in Korea. I am interested next in pinning these factors down.

Percentage Workfroce Participation By Gender | Korea 2021
Percentage Unemployment By Gender | Korea 2021

Combined with the Unemployed Population By Gender graph above, Jan 2021 experienced a huge increase in female unemployment, which has since moderately recovered. However, I wonder what that factor was.

Percentage Employment By Gender | Korea 2021

This graph also shows the large dip in female unemployment in Jan 2021.


For more articles like this, check out my data briefs page.

Other posts that may interest you:

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