Dr. Bronwen Dalton and Dr. Kyungja Jung
Dr. Bronwen Dalton

Bronwen Dalton, PhD
Professor and Director,
Masters of Not-for-Profit
and Social Enterprise Program

Head Of Department (Management)
University of Technology, Sydney

Dr. Kyungja Jung

Kyungja Jung, PhD
Associate Professor
Social and Political Sciences Program
University of Technology, Sydney

North Korea’s Women-led Grassroots Capitalism
Dr. Bronwen Dalton and Dr. Kyungja Jung

Routledge (December 2023)

In their newly released book, North Korea’s Women-led Grassroots Capitalism, co-authors Bronwen Dalton and Kyungja Jung of the University of Technology, Sydney explore the transformative role of women in North Korea’s evolving economic landscape. Amidst the backdrop of North Korea’s economic and social transitions, the book uncovers a remarkable trend: the majority of traders and merchants in the country’s emerging informal market economy are women. This pivotal work provides an in-depth analysis of the intertwining of gender roles and economic changes in North Korea, offering a rich and detailed narrative based on extensive original research.

The book sheds light on the dynamic evolution of women’s roles in North Korean society, extending beyond economic participation to influence family relationships, cultural identity, and even issues of sexuality and reproduction. It seeks to offer a comprehensive understanding of the challenges and realities faced by North Korean women, painting a nuanced picture of their status and role in a society often perceived as rigidly totalitarian. Through the lens of these women’s experiences, the authors explore the limits of social control in North Korea, revealing a complex, layered society where women navigate both authoritarian structures and the constraints of a patriarchal system.

Set to be a significant contribution to the ASAA Women in Asia book series, “North Korea’s Women-led Grassroots Capitalism” is a must-read for scholars, academics, and practitioners in the field of nonprofit studies. It offers valuable insights into the agency of ordinary women in North Korea, challenging common perceptions and highlighting the multifaceted nature of social and economic change in this enigmatic country.

Dr. Bronwen Dalton is a distinguished academic and practitioner in the field of not-for-profit and social enterprise, currently serving as the Professor and Director of the Masters of Not-for-Profit and Social Enterprise Program at the University of Technology, Sydney. In addition to her academic role, she is the founder and CEO of Ruff Sleepers, a unique charity that washes the dogs of homeless individuals, advocating for the importance of pet ownership for mental and physical well-being and improved housing options for homeless pet owners. Dr. Dalton’s career has been marked by significant positions, including her tenure as the Co-Director of the UTS Centre for Cosmopolitan Civil Societies in 2015 and the National Manager of Research at Mission Australia in 2012.

Her academic credentials are equally impressive. Dr. Dalton completed her PhD at the University of Oxford, where she received the Oxford University Larkinson Award for Social Studies. She was also a recipient of the British Vice-Chancellors Committee Overseas Research Scholarship and the Korea Foundation Scholarship. Further enhancing her academic background, she holds a BA from the Australian National University and an MA from Yonsei University, Korea. Dr. Dalton’s research interests are extensive, covering topics like NFP childcare, social enterprises, advocacy, and international NGOs. She has published studies on these subjects, including a co-authored book on combating sex trafficking. Her expertise has led her to hold positions on various boards and editorial committees, including the Australia Korea Foundation and the Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly journal. Notably, her profound interest in Korea led to her involvement as a Director of the National Korean Studies Centre and her significant research on North Korea’s economic transformation, especially the role of women in the emerging market economy, under an ARC Discovery grant.

Dr. Kyungja Jung, an Associate Professor in the Social and Political Sciences Program at the University of Technology, Sydney, is distinguished for her research driven by her involvement in women’s activism in Australia and Korea. Her work, deeply rooted in feminist theory and the intersectionality of gender and sexuality, focuses on areas such as women’s movements, policies related to women, challenges faced by North Korean female defectors, and violence against women, especially among migrant populations. Dr. Jung is recognized for her innovative approach to bringing gender perspectives to North Korean issues, a significant contribution to gender and Asian studies.

Her academic credentials include a pioneering doctoral thesis from the University of New South Wales, comparing civil society and women’s movements in South Korea and Australia. Dr. Jung’s impactful research has led to her receiving an ARC International Fellowship and has been featured in prestigious publications. She has authored several books, including “Practicing Feminism in South Korea: sexual violence and the women’s movement” and is currently working on “North Korea’s Women-led Grassroots Capitalism” with Professor Bronwen Dalton. A sought-after speaker, her research findings have been presented at various international forums, influencing debates and discussions in the field of women’s rights and social policy.