The purpose of this paper is to examine social coalition’s influence on decision-making process of the National Minimum Wage in Korea.
By focusing on the case of the National Minimum Wage Solidarity, the paper looks into the process of coalition formation and the role of labor unions and social movements organizations in the decision-making process of the National Minimum Wage. This study attempts to figure out how social coalition was shaped by adopting four elements for coalition building, i.e., the nature of common concern, the structure of organizational relationships, organizational capacity and commitment, and the scale of coalition activities.
The analysis shows that a variety of social movement organizations could be engaged in the coalition formation of the National Minimum Wage Solidarity despite of their political orientation and different style of activities. In addition, it demonstrates that each organization involved in the National Minimum Wage Solidarity with different levels of commitment. By examining the degrees of commitment, it becomes possible to highlight the role of labor union as an insider and the role of women’s labor movement and youth labor movement organizations, such as Korean Women Trade Union and Korean Youth Community Union, as an outsider of interested parties. Furthermore, it becomes clear that civic movement organizations, such as Citizens’Coalition for Economic Justice and People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy, have played a supportive role as an outsider in the decision-making process. This paper makes contribution on the extending the framework with including social movement organizations to understanding the decision-making process of the National Minimum Wage in Korea.