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Strengthening the Policy Capacity of Seoul Metropolitan Council

Min Chul Shin, Jun-Sik Bae, Jung Yong Lee, Yun-Suk Kwak


This study explores the current institutional and operational strategies, to strengthen the policy capacity support system at the Seoul Metropolitan Council, based on the level of the policy capacity of municipal activities.


In chapter 2 of the literature review, the changing process and structural characteristics of the local council policy support system are examined through theoretical arguments and precedent studies of the local councils. Chapter 3 explores the process of changing the legal system, encompassing the changes in the policy support system of the Seoul Metropolitan council. Surveys and in-depth interviews conducted with diverse stakeholders and experts of the Seoul Metropolitan council are included in chapter 4. Lastly, chapter 5 examines the various ideas and policy implications for the improvement of the policy capacity, by examining the actual situation of the regional councils of various foreign countries with different institutional characteristics.


This study proposes four basic principles to improve the policy capacity of the Seoul metropolitan council. First, the Seoul metropolitan council should initiate the changes of the whole local council in advance. Second, a strategic and step-by-step goal to improve the policy capacity of the council needs to be established. Third, it is necessary to launch an aggressive internal operational strategy for the external environment. Fourth, there is a need to strengthen cooperative links with various external human and physical networks surrounding the local councils.


Based on these four principles, this study suggests both short and long term policy proposals for strengthening the policy capacity of the Seoul metropolitan council.


The short term goals involve reorganizing the internal organization, including expanding the information network base with related organizations, and strengthening the expertise of supporting organizations.


The long term objectives necessitate reviewing the introduction of the aide of assemblyman, and the transfer of the functions of the audit committee and the Ombudsman, to the Seoul metropolitan council.



01 Introduction
1_Background and the Objectives of Research
2_Methodology of Research
02 Review of Policy Capacity for Local Council
1_Status and Role of the Local Council
2_Concept and Components of Policy Capacity of Local Council
3_Changes and Characteristics of Local Council Policy Support System
03 Policy Capacity Status of Seoul Metropolitan Council
1_Political Environment
2_Main Findings on Policy Capacity
3_Current Policy Capability Support System
04 A Survey on the Policy Support System of the Seoul Metropolitan Council
2_Policy Capacity Perspective
3_Supporting System Perspective
4_Summary of the Survey Research
05 Case Studies of Selected Overseas City Councils
2_Tokyo, New York and Los Angeles
3_Paris and Madrid
06 Conclusion and Policy Implications
1_Basic Principles and Direction
2_Short-term Strategies
3_Long-term Strategies