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Management Report

Management reports, briefs issued by Samsung Economic Research Institute

Ecosystem of Policy-related Knowledge

Ecosystem of Policy-related Knowledge

KIM Sun-Bin

Nov. 6, 2006

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Policy-related knowledge refers to a body of knowledge that bureaucrats and policymakers use to make decisions. People in government make use of it when they set the public agenda, establish or implement policies and assess or revise policies. As uncertainties and complexity increase in state affairs, the need for high-quality policy-related knowledge accordingly rises. In this report, the meaning of high-quality policy-related knowledge refers to a "complex body of knowledge" that can contribute to rational decision-making and problem-solving. In order to deal with the ever-complicated economic, social and political environment of our society, fragmentary knowledge or aggregating basic research is often inadequate. Instead, we need high-quality policy-related knowledge that can solve problems and help make sound public policy decisions.

This report conceptualizes policy-related knowledge as intellectual infrastructure that can help maximize governance efficiency. We analyze policy-related knowledge based on the understanding that the process of production, distribution and consumption of policy-related knowledge is similar to that appearing in the food chain of a natural ecosystem. Thus the "ecosystem of policy-related knowledge" covers people and organizations that participate in the process of production, distribution, and consumption of policy-related material and interaction between these participants. In the ecosystem of policy-related knowledge, producers consist of research centers or public intellectuals; consumers include the administrative and legislative branches of government, the political parties and pressure groups; and distributors are the media such as newspapers, broadcasters, Internet media; and environments consist of political, social and economic institutions, demand from the public for policy-related knowledge, and the overseas ecosystem of policy-related knowledge.

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