Market Activities and Trust of North Korean Refugees

20 Pages Posted: 19 Mar 2020

See all articles by Byung-Yeon Kim

Byung-Yeon Kim

Seoul National University

Seong Hee Kim

Department of Economics, Seoul National University; University of Suwon

Date Written: July 2019

Abstract

This study investigates the effects of North Koreans’ informal market activities on their trust. Using survey data on North Korean refugees living in South Korea, we find that North Korean refugees who previously traded goods in markets in North Korea have higher trust in most people. By contrast, the experience of trading in markets did not affect trust in other North Korean refugees, suggesting little evidence of in‐group favoritism. Our main result is robust when we apply the instrument variable approach. This finding suggests the possibility that increased marketization in North Korea leads to a weakened control of the authorities over the North Korean society.

Keywords: informal economic activity, North Korea, North Korean refugee, social capital, trust

JEL Classification: J46, O53, P26

Suggested Citation

Kim, Byung-Yeon and Kim, Seong Hee, Market Activities and Trust of North Korean Refugees (July 2019). Asian Economic Policy Review, Vol. 14, Issue 2, pp. 238-257, 2019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3556806 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/aepr.12261

Byung-Yeon Kim (Contact Author)

Seoul National University ( email )

San 56-1, Silim-dong, Kwanak-ku
Seoul 151-742
Korea

Seong Hee Kim

Department of Economics, Seoul National University ( email )

1 Gwanak-ro Gwanak-gu
Seoul, Seoul 08826
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

University of Suwon ( email )

Suwon-City, Gyeonggi
United States

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