Oldyssey - Seniors in South Korea

When it comes to its elderly population, South Korea breaks all the records.

South Korea

This “Asian Dragon” has come from being one of the world’s poorest countries in the 60s to now the world’s 11th largest economy.

The economic boost has been accompanied by rapid demographic transition as well as sociological upheavals.

The fastest aging in the world

In just 17 years, South Korea has moved from being an “aging society” to an “aged one”. This is largely due to its extremely low fertility rate -0.98 children per woman - and a significant improvement of health conditions.

Average life expectancy is 82, two years above the OECD average. According to statistics, in 2050 the median age – an index that divides the population into two equal group, half of the population is older than the median age and the other half younger- is expected to be 57 years.

Korean society is rapidly changing and as Min Suk Yoon, researcher at the Seoul Institute points out, society still needs to figure out how to tackle this challenge. To understand the situation in South Korea, Min Suk Yoon identifies two groups of seniors:

  • Over 65. This part of the population experienced the civil war and didn’t reap the benefits of the economic growth. Among the OECD countries, South Korea is the one with the highest poverty rate and suicide rate for people over 66. This subpopulation experiences poverty, isolation and loss of autonomy. For this reason, many seniors continue to work, especially in the public sector.
  • Over 50. Tthe “baby boomers” generation, still considered dynamic and healthy, but inactive on the labour market. Min Suk Yoon explains that employees in their 50s become too expensive to the business. The legal retirement age is 60, but, most people retire at 53. The latter group still wants to work either because they have the willingness of contributing to society or for financial necessity.

The Seoul Foundation

The Seoul Foundation 50+ explains that the generational diversity in the labour market is causing inter-generational conflicts: young graduates compete with young retirees, both willing to accept lower salaries in favour of a stable employment.

The Seoul Foundation 50+, supported by the Seoul mayor, was created with the aim of offering personalized support to early retirees and help them stay active and relevant with volunteering, skills development trainings or hobbies.


EverYoung is a company where the average age of employees is 65. Here seniors feel respected and appreciated as working hours and spaces are adapted to their needs.

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tYcx6EKcVaM&feature=youtu.be


Source - original articlehttps://medium.com/@oldyssey_/la-cor%C3%A9e-du-sud-le-pays-de-tous-les-records-c4c0c63a5ca3