By tracing the evolution of South Korean state-led capitalism and comparing it with other economies, this book critiques prevalent theories including neoliberalism, the developmental state, and institutionalism, and proposes a theoretical alternative focusing on endogenous changes through elites' competition within and outside the state.
Unlike the arguments of neoliberals, this volume asserts that the state can still play an active role in reconstituting the national economy through globalization. The Korean state successfully fosters economic growth by nurturing industrial commons through globalization, rather than by adopting a neoliberal free-market system. This volume exerts that the Korean economy has successfully grown over the past 50 years because it has moved toward a new version of state-led developmentalism. In order to better account for the evolution of state-led developmentalism, this book proposes changes by competition within, as well as outside, the state, in order to bring about changes in developmentalism and the ability to adjust to new contexts. Unlike prevalent accounts of developmental state theory, Changes by Competition argues that the state is neither unitary nor cohesive, but a locus of competition.