Analysis on Factors Influencing Welfare Spending of Local Authority : Implementing the Detailed Data Extracted from the Social Security Information System

지방자치단체 자체 복지사업 지출 영향요인 분석 : 사회보장정보시스템을 통한 접근

  • Kim, Kyoung-June (Korea Health and Welfare Information Service, Incheon National University Graduate School) ;
  • Ham, Young-Jin (Korea Health and Welfare Information Service) ;
  • Lee, Ki-Dong (College of Business Administration, Incheon National University)
  • 김경준 (한국보건복지정보개발원, 인천대학교 경영학과) ;
  • 함영진 (한국보건복지정보개발원) ;
  • 이기동 (인천대학교 경영학부)
  • Received : 2013.06.17
  • Accepted : 2013.06.21
  • Published : 2013.06.30


Researchers in welfare services of local government in Korea have rather been on isolated issues as disables, childcare, aging phenomenon, etc. (Kang, 2004; Jung et al., 2009). Lately, local officials, yet, realize that they need more comprehensive welfare services for all residents, not just for above-mentioned focused groups. Still cases dealt with focused group approach have been a main research stream due to various reason(Jung et al., 2009; Lee, 2009; Jang, 2011). Social Security Information System is an information system that comprehensively manages 292 welfare benefits provided by 17 ministries and 40 thousand welfare services provided by 230 local authorities in Korea. The purpose of the system is to improve efficiency of social welfare delivery process. The study of local government expenditure has been on the rise over the last few decades after the restarting the local autonomy, but these studies have limitations on data collection. Measurement of a local government's welfare efforts(spending) has been primarily on expenditures or budget for an individual, set aside for welfare. This practice of using monetary value for an individual as a "proxy value" for welfare effort(spending) is based on the assumption that expenditure is directly linked to welfare efforts(Lee et al., 2007). This expenditure/budget approach commonly uses total welfare amount or percentage figure as dependent variables (Wildavsky, 1985; Lee et al., 2007; Kang, 2000). However, current practice of using actual amount being used or percentage figure as a dependent variable may have some limitation; since budget or expenditure is greatly influenced by the total budget of a local government, relying on such monetary value may create inflate or deflate the true "welfare effort" (Jang, 2012). In addition, government budget usually contain a large amount of administrative cost, i.e., salary, for local officials, which is highly unrelated to the actual welfare expenditure (Jang, 2011). This paper used local government welfare service data from the detailed data sets linked to the Social Security Information System. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the factors that affect social welfare spending of 230 local authorities in 2012. The paper applied multiple regression based model to analyze the pooled financial data from the system. Based on the regression analysis, the following factors affecting self-funded welfare spending were identified. In our research model, we use the welfare budget/total budget(%) of a local government as a true measurement for a local government's welfare effort(spending). Doing so, we exclude central government subsidies or support being used for local welfare service. It is because central government welfare support does not truly reflect the welfare efforts(spending) of a local. The dependent variable of this paper is the volume of the welfare spending and the independent variables of the model are comprised of three categories, in terms of socio-demographic perspectives, the local economy and the financial capacity of local government. This paper categorized local authorities into 3 groups, districts, and cities and suburb areas. The model used a dummy variable as the control variable (local political factor). This paper demonstrated that the volume of the welfare spending for the welfare services is commonly influenced by the ratio of welfare budget to total local budget, the population of infants, self-reliance ratio and the level of unemployment factor. Interestingly, the influential factors are different by the size of local government. Analysis of determinants of local government self-welfare spending, we found a significant effect of local Gov. Finance characteristic in degree of the local government's financial independence, financial independence rate, rate of social welfare budget, and regional economic in opening-to-application ratio, and sociology of population in rate of infants. The result means that local authorities should have differentiated welfare strategies according to their conditions and circumstances. There is a meaning that this paper has successfully proven the significant factors influencing welfare spending of local government in Korea.


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