First Korean Working Conditions Survey: a comparison between South Korea and EU countries

Ind Health. 2009 Jan;47(1):50-4. doi: 10.2486/indhealth.47.50.


This report aims to provide an overview of the intensity of work and work satisfaction in Korea by comparing the first Korean Working Conditions Survey with the results of the fourth European Working Conditions Survey in 2005. According to the comparison, Korean workers work longer hours than workers in the majority of EU countries. However, work intensity in the EU 27 was 1.5 times stronger than Korea. In Korea, the rate of violence, bullying and harassment in the workplace is much lower than the EU 27, but in terms of work satisfaction, EU workers responded more positively than Korean workers. The amount of leave in Korean workers was much lower than the EU counterparts, yet the average number of accident-related or other work-related leaves was greater in Korean workers than workers in the EU. The pattern of exposure to physical factors, namely the most frequent hazards, such as, repetitive movement and painful or tiring posture, is similar in Korean and EU workers. However, the proportion of each exposure is larger in Korean workers than EU workers. In Korea, the most frequently reported work-related symptoms are musculoskeletal disorders followed by stress and fatigue. These patterns are quite similar in Korea and EU countries.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Data Collection
  • European Union*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Job Satisfaction
  • Korea
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Exposure*
  • Occupational Health
  • Workplace*
  • Young Adult