The rapid economic growth of Korea, China, Japan and Singapore has greatly boosted the economic capabilities of the region, which are now strong enough to be compared with the OECD member countries. Yet Korea, Japan, and Singapore are seriously struggling with low fertility rates and China is standing at a crossroads over whether to sustain its one-child policy. From the long-term perspective low fertility rates and aging populations arouse concern that those phenomenons might be stumbling blocks of the economic development of East Asian countries. In addition to the low fertility rate and aging population issues, shrinking size of households, increasing numbers of diverse families and promoting female employment have been rapidly spread around the region. To intellectually deal with these issues neighboring countries in the East Asian region should be more cooperative in sharing the family and population information in each country and be more active in discussing current issues with each other in order to establish effective policies.
This comparative study discuss on family structure, female employment, and family policy data of Korea, China, Japan, and Singapore based on the OECD family database standards. By examining how transformed the family policies in the four East Asian countries I wish to provide implications and insight valuable to the advancement of the family policy in this region.