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A Study on the Policy Tasks for Establishing the Gender-equal Organizational Culture in Seoul Metropolitan Government
  • Date : 2021-08-10
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A Study on the Policy Tasks for Establishing the Gender-equal Organizational Culture in Seoul Metropolitan Government

NA Sung-Eun
LEE Jae Kyung
KANG Hee Young
Research Fellow, Seoul Foundation of Women & Family


The sexual harassment cases have occurred in the public government including Seoul, so that there is a growing demand for the policy to transform the male-centered organization. The Seoul Metropolitan Government has tried to pursue special plans for eradication of gender discrimination and sexual harassment. In this context, the study aims to analyze differences in perceptions of public officials in Seoul regarding gender discrimination and sexual harassment, and propose the suggestions to establish a gender-equal organizational culture.

The survey on the perception of public officials in Seoul was re-analyzed including the comparison with the 2018 survey results, and keyword analysis was conducted based on the direct/indirect in-depth interviews of 29 public officials.

According to the analysis, public officials tend to rate organizations as unequal, especially women's opinions, and have low expectations that sexual harassment cases would be handled properly. Respondents of the survey agree a lot that the level of punishment should be strengthened to stop sexist practices, and demand that the education on the prevention of violence and reorganization be needed.

As the result of analyzing the transcript of in-depth interviews on the organizational culture of Seoul Metropolitan Government, it is suggested that the following conditions are necessary to establish the gender-equal organizational culture: First of all, the participants emphasize that it needs to spread out and share the sign that the sexual offenders must be punished by proper procedure and follow-up management of sexual harassment cases should be established. Next, it needs to increase the effectiveness of the evaluation of gender sensitivity category and to restructure work patterns implemented inevitably by COVID-19 such as telecommuting working, ban on group dining, and so on. And then, gender sensitivity should be established as the main criterion for evaluating managers' capabilities, and the opportunity to experience various sensibilities should be increased. Lastly, the women must come to the forefront as the subject in order to change the male-centered organizational culture.

Based on the above discussions, the following suggestions are drawn. In relation to the establishment of the gender-equal organizational culture, it is necessary to present the role of witnesses to sexual harassment cases should be informed, to enhance the authority of the Gender Equality and Culture Innovation Committee, to provide the differentiated contents and operation method of education on preventing sexual harassment and gender discrimination considering the targeted group and develop diagnostic tools for gender sensitivity, and to establish the implementation plan to utilized the results of the survey on the perception of public officials in Seoul Metropolitan Government.

In order to improve the personnel system of Seoul Metropolitan Government, the procedures for handling sexual harassment cases should be carried out transparently and the personnel management of sexual offenders should be strengthened. Then, the secretarial work needs to be disclosed on the organizing chart of the website. Next, procedures should be taken to alleviate gender inequality within the departments of Seoul Government. And the last and most important requirement is to expand the number of female senior executives and to set up the programs for seniors to increase gender sensitivity and improve their capacity.

*Key words: sexual harassment, sexual violence, gender discrimination, organizational culture, gender sensitivity