This research is one of 2-year consecutive studies on making the Korean livable cities. The livable city research has 3 main objects; analyzing the cases of livable cities in Korea and bringing out their implications; finding the method of linking the reality and the system of making livable cities defining the main concept of the Korean livable city and finding the method of institutionalization and the running strategies for making livable cities. This study deals with the first step of the Korean livable city research. It provides the basic information to help the reasonable evolution of making livable cities, by investigating participators, process, and administrative support from each representative practice of Korean livable city.
This research consists of the following 6 chapters. Chapter 1 introduces the research and its main objects. Chapter 2 reviews the literature related to theory and practices of making livable cities and provides the basic directions of livable city policy. Chapter 3 examines national and local government policies and citizen movement in the history of planning or making the livable city since the Korean War, and finds their challenge and limitations. Chapter 4 analyzes the practices in Korea and shows their implications. Chapter 5 derives the desirable directions for the Korean livable city policy from the analysis of the chapter 4. Chapter 6 addresses the conclusions and limitations of this research, and the challenge for future studies.
2. Literature review of making the livable city
The preceding studies aim to define the concept and compositions of the livable city. These studies only focus on defining ‘what is a livable city’ or on providing the characteristics of best practices throughout case studies of experiences in Korea and oversea countries. Especially the case studies by activists only describe each practice.
Therefore, researchers need to focus on the process of making the livable city rather than defining its elements and participatory bodies. The importance of participation and the harmony between working, living and playing has been emphasized for several years, but yet it has not been realized. The advanced study needs to find out its causes.
3. Trends of the livable city policy
The livable city policy in Korea started from early 1970’s with the “Saemaeul Movement (the New Community Movement)”. Before this movement, there was the “Rehabilitation Movement” which the main concept was more focused on the public awareness. Also the “Saemaeul Movement” was a typical government leading top-down project to improve living environment and increase citizen income. Therefore, it differs from the concept of the recent livable city project which emphasizes more on the active citizen participation.
The neighborhood movement in 1970’s, which started to get over poverty, and the community revitalization movement, leaded by citizen groups in 1990’s, has come out with the following limitations. Overall, these livable city projects, leaded by dwellers or citizen participation, have not been linked to the central and local government policies. However, during the 1990’s, the Korean government has started to recognize the importance of citizen participation on these projects. On the other hand, before 1990’s, most of the citizen movements were against the government policies, but since the 1990’s the movements have evolved to alternative forms. Since the 1990’s, new trends of livable city projects have been developed with the collaboration between citizen groups and governments.
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