Search All Site Content

Total Index: 6068 publications.

Subscribe to our Mailing List!

Sign up for our mailing list to keep up to date on all the latest developments.

KEI Spotlight

[Media Interview] Business Insider's Article on South Korean millennials

June 12, 2023

KEI’s Director of Communications Sang Kim was quoted in Business Insider’s article on South Korea’s millennial generation in the labor market. This article was published on June 11, 2023.

But that also comes with a downside: Many millennials are overqualified for the labor market. The unemployment rate among young people in Korea is almost twice as high as it is in the US.

As of February, the unemployment rate for people between 20 and 29 in South Korea was 7%, according to a report by Statistics Korea. That’s an increase of 1.2 percentage points from January.

By comparison, the unemployment rate in the US for 25- to 34-year-olds was 3.9% in February, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The Korean labor market doesn’t have enough high-paying jobs sought by young graduates, Sang Kim, the director of communications at the Korea Economic Institute, told Insider.

“In the past, people worked hard to get into prestigious universities, which guaranteed prestigious jobs,” she said. “But today, the reality is that even with degrees from top schools, people are having a hard time finding the high-quality jobs they want.”

The idea that university acceptance guaranteed success was so prevalent in Korea that it was dubbed the “golden-ticket syndrome” by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, a United Nations observer.

Park is pursuing a master’s degree in international relations. He’s already preparing his backup options if he can’t find a job with his desired salary — between $30,000 and $40,000 a year — and is looking into Ph.D. programs. Postgraduate degree holders earn an average of $53,700 a year in Korea, per Statistics Korea.

“The jobs are definitely there, I just don’t know if the pay is right,” he said.

To read the full article on Business Insider, please click here.