2018–2019 U.S.-Korea NextGen Scholars
Meet our 2018-2019 NextGen Scholars:
Joan E. Cho is Korea Foundation Assistant Professor of Korean Political Economy at the College of East Asian Studies at Wesleyan University and Associate-in-Research at the Council of East Asian Studies at Yale University. Her primary research and teaching interests include authoritarian politics, democratization, and social movements in Korea and East Asia. Her works on authoritarian media control and South Korean democracy movement are published in the Journal of East Asian Studies and the Routledge Handbook of Korean Culture and Society. Cho is currently working on a book manuscript, The Authoritarian Roots of Korean Democracy, which examines how generational differences in political values and behaviors shaped under the past authoritarian regimes contributed to political polarization in the democratic period. She holds Ph.D. and A.M. degrees in political science from the Department of Government at Harvard University and B.A., cum laude with honors, in political science from the University of Rochester.
Aram Hur is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Missouri. She was previously a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Wagner School of Public Service at New York University. Her research lies at the intersection of comparative and international politics, with a focus on East Asia. She is interested in how identity politics shapes the way new or marginalized citizens integrate into democracies: how they develop a sense of democratic responsibility, whether and how they participate politically, and what that means for the resulting health of democracies. Dr. Hur was selected by the Office of the Provost as a Faculty Fellow in NYU’s Postdoctoral and Transition Program for Academic Diversity in 2015. At Wagner, she is currently finishing her first book manuscript titled The Dutiful Citizen: How Nationalism Shapes Moral Obligations to the State, as well as ongoing projects on the political integration of North Korean refugees, national minorities, and immigrants. She received her Ph.D. in Politics from Princeton University, M.P.P. from the Harvard Kennedy School, and B.A. from Stanford University.
Katrin Fraser Katz is a former director for Japan, Korea, and oceanic affairs on the staff of the National Security Council, where she served from 2007 to 2008. Previously, she was a special assistant to the assistant secretary for international organization affairs at the U.S. Department of State and an analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency. Dr. Katz’s research, which has been supported by grants from the Korea Foundation and the Horowitz Foundation for Social Policy, explores the interplay of cooperation and conflict in East Asia’s political, economic, and security dynamics. In 2017, she received the inaugural Sherman Family Korea Emerging Scholar Lecture Series award from the Korea Society. She holds a Ph.D. in political science from Northwestern University; a master’s degree in East Asian and international security studies from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, where she was awarded the John C. Perry Scholarship for East Asian Studies; and a bachelor’s degree, magna cum laude, in international relations and Japanese from the University of Pennsylvania.
Stephanie K. Kim is an Assistant Professor of the Practice and the Faculty Director of the Higher Education Administration program at Georgetown University. Dr. Kim's research focuses on comparative higher education, with a special focus on globalization and higher education reform, organizational change, and transnational mobility patterns of students and scholars across Asia. Her scholarship has appeared in journals and volumes across education and area studies, including Compare, Comparative Education, and the Journal of Korean Studies, and has been prominently featured in major media outlets. She is currently working on a book project on higher education reform and evolving student mobility patterns between South Korea and the United States. Dr. Kim holds a Ph.D. in Education from the University of California, Los Angeles, a master's degree in Global Affairs from New York University, and a B.A. in English Language and Literature from the University of Michigan.
Hanmee Na Kim is an assistant professor of East Asian History at Wheaton College. Before heading to Wheaton, she was a post-doctoral scholar at the University of Southern California Korean Studies Institute. She received a Ph.D. in modern Korean history at the University of California, Los Angeles, M.A. in Asian Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, and B.A. with honors in International Studies from the University of Chicago. Her current research interests and work are on Korea-U.S. diplomatic/cultural/intellectual interactions (1866-1945) and Korean students in the U.S. (1884-1960).
Jiyoung Ko is an Assistant Professor of Politics at Bates College. Dr. Ko is an international security scholar with a regional focus on Northeast Asia. Her research interests include alliance politics, nuclear proliferation, and nationalism. Her work focuses on South Korea's nuclear forbearance and the credibility of U.S. extended deterrence, and the management of public opinion on asymmetric alliances. She is currently completing her book project that examines how popular nationalism affects the likelihood of international conflict. She was a postdoctoral fellow at the Notre Dame International Security Center, and is an organizer of the International Relations and East Asia Online Colloquium. Dr. Ko received her Ph.D, M.Phil, and M.A. in Political Science from Yale University, and a B.A. and a M.A. in Political Science from Korea University.
Tom Le is an Assistant Professor of Politics at Pomona College. His research interests include militarism norms, U.S-ROK and U.S.-Japan alliances, Japanese security policy, East Asia regionalism, and war memory and reconciliation. His work has been published by Foreign Affairs, the Washington Post, the Diplomat, among others. His current book project titled Japan’s Aging Peace: Security Among Militarisms examines how demographics shape Japanese security policy and cultural norms on militarism. He is an Adjunct Fellow at Pacific Forum and was a Fulbrighter and Pacific Forum CSIS Sasakawa Peace Foundation non-resident fellow. He received a Ph.D. and a M.A. in political science from University of California, Irvine, and a B.A. in history and political science from University of California, Davis.
Will Scott spent the falls of 2013, '14, and '15 teaching Computer Science in Pyongyang. These trips seeded his fascination with the state of consumer technology in the DPRK. Will completed his doctoral work at the University of Washington, studying distributed systems and networking. His postdoctoral work at the University of Michigan has focused on disconnected networks, and online information controls.
Meredith Shaw is the managing editor of Social Science Japan Journal and an associate professor at the University of Tokyo. She obtained her Ph.D. in Political Science and International Relations from the University of Southern California. She specializes in cultural politics and social movements in East Asia. Her work has been published in the Journal of Conflict Resolution, Global Asia, and The National Interest.
YoungJu Shin is an Assistant Professor at the Hugh Downs School of Human Communication at Arizona State University. Her primary line of research focuses on health communication and culture with the focus on prevention intervention. She has conducted a series of studies that examined differential roles of family, school, media, and culture for youth substance use prevention intervention. She is also interested in immigrant families and health during the acculturation process, specifically investigating the effects of a role reversal between parent and child in Mexican immigrant families and their communication privacy management and identity negotiation. She received a Ph.D. in health communication from Pennsylvania State University, a M.A. in organizational professional communication from Ball State University, and a B.A. from Yeungnam University, with a dual major in Korean language and literature and media and communication.
Benjamin R. Young is an incoming assistant professor in Cyber Leadership and Intelligence at Dakota State University starting in Fall 2019. He currently is a fellow in the Strategy and Policy Department at the U.S. Naval War College. Most recently, he received his Ph.D. in Asian history from George Washington University in May 2018. He is currently working on his first book, entitled Guns, Guerillas, and the Great Leader: North Korea and the Third World, 1956-1989. He has published scholarly articles on North Korea’s diplomatic history in Cross-Currents: East Asian History and Culture Review, Journal of Northeast Asian History, British Association of Korean Studies Papers, and the Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus. He is also a regular contributor to NKnews.org and has written pieces for The Washington Post, The Guardian, and Reuters. His research has been supported by the Fulbright Foundation, the Cosmos Club, and the U.S Department of Education. He has intensively studied the Korean language in the U.S, South Korea, and the ethnic Korean region of China. In addition to visiting North Korea, Japan, and Russia, he has also lived in South Korea and China. His main research interests revolve around U.S-Korea relations, North Korean diplomacy, African-Asian relations, Marxism in the Third World, development in the contemporary Global South, the radical 1960s, and socialist internationalism.