U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun in conversation with Robert Carlin at Stanford


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Korea Program scholars write for academic and general publications, and appear frequently in the media to share findings from their policy-relevant research and provide thought leadership on Korean affairs and U.S.-Korea relations. Browse our news and media mentions below.

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      Shining Light on the Threats to Democracy and Human Rights in Asia

      News / November 12, 2019

      Around the world, democracy is in retreat. In its Freedom in the World 2019 report, the independent watchdog organization Freedom House records the 13th consecutive year of global declines in political rights and civil liberties.

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      Japan and South Korea on the Brink: International Affairs and Trade Relations Experts Elucidate the Conflict between the Two U.S. Allies

      News / October 31, 2019

      The recent escalation of diplomatic and trade disputes between South Korea and Japan has alarmed numerous observers and is rather confusing to many around the world to whom the two countries seem to have much to lose and little to gain by the deterioration of the bilateral relationship. What underlying forces are driving the conflict? Are these new forces, or the same historical forces coming to a head? How much are factors from the international environment, such as the behavior of the United States, influencing the current escalation?

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      On Korean Nationalism and Its Role in the Escalating Japan-South Korea Friction

      Commentary / September 5, 2019

      Tension and discord in Japan-South Korea relations are nothing new, but the unfortunate, intensifying conflict between the two countries — a manifestation of right-wing Japanese nationalism and left-wing South Korean nationalism — seems headed toward a collision course. To understand the escalating friction between Tokyo and Seoul one must recognize the unique characteristics of Korean nationalism, and particularly its historical origins, development, and political role in shaping Korean attitudes toward Japan.

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      Korea’s Migrants: Towards Diversity and Transnationalism

      News / August 9, 2019

      South Korea (hereafter Korea) is widely regarded as among the world’s most ethnically and linguistically homogeneous countries. In 1990, Korea counted only 49,000 foreigners amongst its population. But over the last two decades, the number of migrants in the country has grown dramatically, reaching 2.3 million (or 4.5% of the population) in 2018. Just as important is the growing diversity of migrants coming to Korea.

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      Two Experts to Join the Korea Program as Koret Fellows in Korean Studies

      News / August 7, 2019

      The Korea Program at the Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center is pleased to welcome Robert R. King and Victor Cha as Koret fellows in Korean studies during the 2019-20 academic year.

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      8th Annual Korean Studies Writing Prize Awarded

      News / July 16, 2019

      Taehwa Hong (BA '21 International Relations) has been awarded the 8th annual Korea Program Prize for Writing in Korean Studies for his paper, "North Korea in the Soviet-Albanian Dispute." Yong Suk Lee, deputy director of the Korea Program at Shorenstein APARC, says, "Hong's paper is an outstanding piece of research and writing." "The paper delves into a rather novel topic - how North Korea diplomatically responded to the Albanian Crisis between two socialist powers, the Soviet Union and China." The details of the announcement may be viewed

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      Stanford Asia-Pacific Innovation Conference Examines New Pathways for Aging Societies

      News / July 1, 2019

      The world is “graying” at an unprecedented rate. According to the UN’s World Population Prospects 2019, the number of persons over the age of 65 is growing the fastest and expected to more than double by 2050, then triple in another 50 years’ time.

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      On the Centennial of the March First Independence Movement of Korea

      News / May 13, 2019

      The year 2019 is the centennial of several anti-colonialist movements that emerged in Asia, including the March First Movement of Korea. On that day a century ago, protesters shouting “Mansei!” (“Long live Korean independence!”) gathered in Seoul and formed what would become the first nationwide political protest in Korea under Japanese colonial rule. Although the movement failed to achieve national sovereignty, it left important legacies for Korea and other parts of Asia under foreign dominance.

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      Audio: Pacific Settlement of Disputes in East Asia: Inter-State Arbitration and Judicial Diplomacy

      News / May 10, 2019

      On May 10, 2019, Eun-Young Park  presented his lecture "Pacific Settlement of Disputes in East Asia: Inter-State Arbitration and Judicial Diplomacy." Audio and a transcript of that event is now available.


      Listen to the Seminar:

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      How to Keep the Ball Rolling on North Korean Negotiations

      Commentary / May 2, 2019

      The current stalemate should not be taken as a restless waiting game or a prelude to dejected failure. The situation is frustrating and nerve-wracking to some, but the good news is that neither side is willing to close the window of talks and jump off the lurching — but still running — train of diplomacy.

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      At Carleton College, APARC Scholars Lay Out North Korea's Economic Quandary

      Commentary / May 1, 2019

      Scholar Andray Abrahamian organized many projects to promote economic change in North Korea over the past decade, including that country’s first two ultimate frisbee tournaments. So when he spoke at Carleton College in Northfield last week, the first thing Abrahamian did was acknowledge the school’s prominence in the sport. [Its intercollegiate team is a perennial power and most of the school’s students play in intramural leagues.]

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      Academic Prize Awarded to Korea Program Deputy Director

      News / March 29, 2019

      We are happy to share that FSI’s SK Center Fellow and APARC's Korea Program Deputy Director Yong Suk Lee is the recipient of the 2018 Urban Land Institute United Kingdom Academic Prize for his paper “Entrepreneurship, small business and economic growth in cities.”

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      8th Annual Writing Prize in Korean Studies

      News / March 29, 2019

      The Korea Program Prize for Writing in Korean Studies recognizes and rewards outstanding examples of writing in an essay, term paper, or thesis produced during the current academic year in any discipline within the area of Korean studies, broadly defined. This competition is open to both undergraduate and graduate students. The prize will be awarded at a special ceremony in the fall, and the first place winner will receive a certificate and $1,000; Honorable mention winner(s) will receive a certificate.

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      Scholars, Journalists, and Former Commander of U.S. Forces Korea Discuss North Korea’s Future

      News / March 28, 2019

      On the heels of the abrupt ending of the Hanoi summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, with the future of the diplomacy of denuclearization in question, the Korea Program at Shorenstein APARC convened the 11th Koret Workshop, appropriately titled this year “North Korea and the World in Flux.”

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      After Hanoi: APARC and CISAC Experts Discuss the Outcome of the Trump-Kim Summit and the Future of U.S.-DPRK Diplomacy

      Q&A / March 4, 2019

      Following the abrupt ending of the highly anticipated second bilateral summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Hanoi, APARC and CISAC scholars evaluate the result of the summit, its implications for regional relations in Northeast Asia, and the opportunities moving forward towards the goal of denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

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      There’s a Silver Lining in the Clouds Over the North Korea Negotiations

      Commentary / March 1, 2019
      HANOI—On Thursday afternoon, as it became clear that lunch between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump was off and that there would be no signing of an agreement between their two countries, storm clouds briefly gathered over Hoan Kiem Lake in Hanoi.
      In the nearby Metropole hotel, the mood had darkened as well.
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      Video: KQED Newsroom Talks to Yong Suk Lee about the Trump-Kim Hanoi Summit

      Commentary / March 1, 2019
      Following the anticlimactic conclusion of the Trump-Kim summit in Hanoi, KQED Newsroom spoke with our Korea Program Deputy Director Yong Suk Lee about the surprising outcome of the summit and what's next for U.S.-DPRK diplomacy. Watch: 

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      Why Walking Away from Kim's Deal May Have Been the Right Move

      Commentary / February 28, 2019

      President Trump caught the world by surprise once again yesterday with a decision not to sign a deal with his North Korean counterpart, Chairman Kim Jong-un, in Hanoi, Vietnam. While walking away is a common tactic in working-level negotiation, what happened in Hanoi was a rare case and the least expected outcome.

      Read the full article on Axios.

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      The Chemistry Between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un

      Commentary / February 27, 2019

      At first glance U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un seem like an unlikely pair. A few years back they were calling each other “Rocket Man” and a “dotard,” and tension between the United States and North Korea was escalating rapidly in 2017. But in a few days they are slated to meet for the second time, and according to Trump they had “fallen in love” not long after their first encounter. What could have created such intimate bond between the two?

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      Video Interview with Koret Fellow Andray Abrahamian

      Q&A / February 26, 2019

      We sat down with our 2018-19 Koret Fellow in Korean Studies Andray Abrahamian to discuss North Korea denuclearization and the approaching Trump-Kim second summit in Hanoi; Abrahamian's work with the nonprofit organization Choson Exchange that took him to North Korea nearly thirty times; his book that compares North Korea and Myanmar; and his fellowship experience. Watch: 

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      Transcript: Andrew Kim on North Korea Denuclearization and U.S.-DPRK Diplomacy

      Commentary / February 25, 2019

      Prices for Denuclearization of North Korea

      Andrew Kim
      Remarks delivered at Stanford’s Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center | February 22, 2019
      We have a long history of negotiating with Pyongyang on denuclearization. These negotiations have been in different formats from bilateral talks to trilateral talks to four-party talks to six party talks. We learned many lessons through these engagements.
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      The Second Trump-Kim Summit Must Settle the Big Questions

      Commentary / February 19, 2019
      “There is no detailed definition or shared agreement of what denuclearization entails....” These words were not from critics of ambivalence in the Trump administration’s nuclear negotiations with North Korea. Rather surprisingly, they were the words of the U.S. Special Representative for North Korea, Stephen Biegun, during his speech at Stanford University last month.
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      Shorenstein APARC Names 2019-20 Postdoctoral Fellows

      News / February 19, 2019

      Shorenstein APARC is pleased to announce the selection of two scholars as postdoctoral fellows for the 2019-20 academic year. They will begin their appointments at Stanford in the coming Autumn quarter.

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