The socio-political economy of nuclear power development in Japan and South Korea

Scott Victor Valentine, Benjamin K. Sovacool

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


This paper analyzes the socio-cultural, political and economic conditions prevalent during the inception of nuclear power programs in Japan and South Korea in order to identify commonalities which support nuclear power program expansion. The study identifies six factors as having a clear influence on supporting nuclear power development: (1) strong state involvement in guiding economic development; (2) centralization of national energy policymaking and planning; (3) campaigns to link technological progress with national revitalization; (4) influence of technocratic ideology on policy decisions; (5) subordination of challenges to political authority, and (6) low levels of civic activism. The paper postulates that insights from this study can be used to assess the propensity of nations which have the emergent capacity to support nuclear power development to actually embark on such programs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7971-7979
Number of pages9
JournalEnergy Policy
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Energy(all)
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


Dive into the research topics of 'The socio-political economy of nuclear power development in Japan and South Korea'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this