Hannah June Kim joined the Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center (Shorenstein APARC) as Shorenstein Postdoctoral Fellow in Contemporary Asia for the 2019-20 academic year. She researches public opinion, political behavior, theories of modernization, economic development, and democratic citizenship, focusing on East Asia.
Dr. Kim completed her doctorate in the Department of Political Science at the University of California, Irvine, in 2019. Her dissertation examined how and why people view democracy in systematically different ways in six countries: China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, and Vietnam. Developing unique categories of democratic citizenship that measure the cognitive, affective, and behavioral patterns of individuals, she found that state-led economic development limited the growth of cultural democratization among middle class groups in all three dimensions. The results implied that the classic causality between modernization and democratization may not be universally applicable to different cultural contexts.
At Shorenstein APARC, Hannah worked on developing her dissertation into a book manuscript and making progress on her next project exploring democratization and gender empowerment in East Asia. Hannah received an MA in International Studies from Korea University and a BA from UCLA. Her work has been published, or is forthcoming, in The Journal of Politics, PS: Political Science & Politics, and the Japanese Journal of Political Science.