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

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Gi-wook Shin, director of the Korea program at Stanford's Shorenstein APARC, and Andray Abrahamian, visiting scholar who has taught North Koreans about capitalism, at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., last week.
Gi-wook Shin, director of the Korea program at Stanford's Shorenstein APARC, and Andray Abrahamian, visiting scholar who has taught North Koreans about capitalism, at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., last week.
Photo credit: 
Evan Ramstad, Carleton College

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.]

“It’s really fun for me to come to one of the spiritual homes of ultimate frisbee,” he said. When the U.S. lifts a travel ban on North Korea, he added, he’d like to organize another tournament there.

Abrahamian was a co-founder of Chosen Exchange, a Singapore-based organization that for years taught business and marketing skills to North Koreans with programs inside the country and classes in other countries. Its activities declined after the North’s nuclear tests in 2016 prompted an international backlash that included a widening of sanctions.

This academic year, he’s [the 2018-2019 Koret Fellow] in the Korea program at Stanford University’s Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center, but he was in the North Korean capital, Pyongyang, early last month...

Read the full article in the StarTribune.