A Needs-centred Educational Support Model for the Career Transitions of North Korean Defectors: Implications for South Korea's Support Policy



North Korean defectors have faced significant challenges in finding and keeping jobs in the South Korean labour market due to their many differences from South Korean workers. As the number of defectors has increased, South Korea has experienced an increased need for employment support to assist defectors in overcoming challenges in their employment and leading them to stable economic status. This study aims to develop a needs-centred educational support model for defectors' career transitions, compare the content of suggested support programmes with the content of currently provided support programmes, and suggest relevant policy implications. Based on this study's findings, the authors argue that defectors' employment needs differ from those of other groups of job seekers in Korea; thus, this population should be served differently with consistent educational support. Each stage of the developed model provides appropriate support programmes that reflect the unique employment needs of defectors.