Financialization and industrial policies in Japan and Korea

Financialization and industrial policies in Japan and Korea:

Evolving institutional complementarities and loss of state capabilities


Presentation by Sebastien Lechevalier


This paper analyses the revival of industrial policies from the late 2000 s in Japan and Korea and their limitations. The paper first adopts the perspective of historical institutionalism to focus on the relation between IPs and financial systems and study their evolution over the last 40 years. Second the paper mobilizes the concepts of institutional complementarities and hierarchy, and discusses the limits of this revival in a context of liberalized financial systems, to which government entities in charge of industrial policies have contributed. A major finding is that, in the context of financialization, past complementarities of the developmental state have weakened and contradictions have arisen. It has resulted in a restructuration of state capabilities to design and implement industrial policies, and to its inability to subordinate finance to its goals, despite the discourses and ambitions of governments. However, comparison between Japan and Korea also allows the identification of some significant differences in the initial institutional arrangements and in the process of institutional change, pertaining to sources of greater state capabilities in Korea than in Japan in the current period.


7 February 2018, 5:00-7:00 PM


Russell Square: College Buildings Room: KLT


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