Poverty and Inequality in East Asia


Poverty and Inequality in East Asia

Work, Family and Policy

9781800888975 Edward Elgar Publishing
Edited by Inhoe Ku, Professor, Department of Social Welfare, Seoul National University, South Korea and Peter Saunders, Emeritus Professor, Social Policy Research Centre, University of New South Wales, Australia
Publication Date: 2022 ISBN: 978 1 80088 897 5 Extent: 256 pp
This insightful book addresses the urgent need for robust evidence on recent trends and factors contributing to poverty and inequality in East Asia.

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Critical Acclaim
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Foreword by Timothy M. (Tim) Smeeding, Founding Director of the Luxembourg Income Study and Lee Rainwater Distinguished Professor of Public Affairs and Economics, University of Wisconsin, US

This insightful book addresses the urgent need for robust evidence on recent trends and factors contributing to poverty and inequality in East Asia.

Using data from international projects, including the Luxembourg Income Study (LIS), as well as national data, expert contributors monitor trends in poverty and inequality within and between countries, while also identifying the factors that are driving them, both nationally and regionally. Chapters explore labour market and demographic developments, changes in family and household structures and roles, and changes in policy settings. Investigating how these factors act both independently and interactively to generate nationally and regionally unique features of poverty and inequality, the book highlights how inequality has been rising on a global scale and suggests how welfare states should respond.

Poverty and Inequality in East Asia will be a valuable resource for researchers and students studying Asian development and social policy, comparative social policy, labour policy and family policy. Drawing on state of the art data to compare experiences in selected Western economies against those in East Asia, the book will also be a useful resource for policy makers.
Critical Acclaim
‘This volume offers both insight into how East Asian societies are changing, while issuing a warning on how and why their welfare states need further change to adapt to these new realities as the characteristics of inequality and differential prosperity found in rich western nations have come to roost in East Asia.’
– From the foreword by Timothy Smeeding

‘In this engaging volume, leading experts utilize high-quality datasets to assess social policies in contemporary East Asia. These excellent and nuanced studies analyze interactions among multiple changes currently underway – including policy reforms, economic shifts, and demographic upheavals. This illuminating collection broadens and deepens cross-national scholarship on poverty and inequality.’
– Janet C. Gornick, City University of New York, Graduate Center, US
Contributors: Aya Abe, Bruce Bradbury, Geumsun Byun, Yu-Ling Chang, Sunyu Ham, Markus Jäntti, Ji Young Kang, Dongjin Kim, Hyejin Ko, Inhoe Ku, Wonjin Lee, Shi Li, Zhu Mengbing, Irene Y.H. Ng, Mihee Park, Chenhong Peng, Jennifer Romich, Peter Saunders, Vera Mun Yu Tang, Julia Shu-Huah Wang, Hung Wong, Yinan Yao, Chungyang Yeh, Xi Zhao

Foreword xiv
Acknowledgements xvi
1 Introduction to Poverty and Inequality in East Asia: Work,
Family and Policy 1
Peter Saunders and Inhoe Ku
2 Working poverty and anti-poverty policy in four East
Asian societies 14
Aya Abe, Yu-Ling Chang, Ji Young Kang, Jennifer
Romich, and Julia Shu-Huah Wang
3 Income packaging and social safety nets for low-income
families with children in East Asia 38
Julia Shu-Huah Wang, Irene Y.H. Ng, Inhoe Ku, Ji Young
Kang, Xi Zhao, Chenhong Peng, Aya Abe, and Yinan Yao
4 Childlessness and social support in four East Asian societies 63
Aya Abe
5 Married women’s employment and the motherhood
employment penalty by couple’s educational attainment
across ten countries 86
Ji Young Kang, Wonjin Lee, Sunyu Ham, and Julia Shu-Huah Wang
6 Adult, child and sibling deprivation in Hong Kong 109
Peter Saunders, Hung Wong, and Vera Mun Yu Tang
7 Explaining the child poverty outcomes of Japan, South
Korea, and Taiwan 129
Bruce Bradbury, Aya Abe, Markus Jäntti, Inhoe Ku, and
Julia Shu-Huah Wang
8 Poverty among young adults in East Asia – a comparative study 153
Geumsun Byun, Mihee Park, and Hyejin Ko
9 Old-age poverty in rural China in the new century 176
Shi Li and Mengbing Zhu
10 What makes old-age poverty in East Asian societies so high? 196
Inhoe Ku, Wonjin Lee, Aya Abe, Mengbing Zhu, Shi Li,
Chungyang Yeh, and Dongjin Kim
11 Conclusion 221
Inhoe Ku and Peter Saunders

Index 231
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