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Comparative Connections Virtual Roundtable



Public Virtual Event


About This Event

On March 9, South Korea chose its next president to succeed the progressive Moon Jae-in, and the results may cause a sharp shift in Seoul’s relations with the US, China and Japan. On Feb. 23, three distinguished Korea scholars provided an overview of the election, as well as what Washington, Beijing and Tokyo can expect from its outcome.


Dr. Ji-Young Lee is a political scientist who teaches at American University’s School of International Service and studies East Asian security at the intersection of history, area studies, and international relations. She is the author of “China’s Hegemony: Four Hundred Years of East Asian Domination” (Columbia University Press, 2016). Her current book project, “The Great Power Next Door” (under contract with Columbia University Press), is a historically informed analysis of when and how China has chosen to militarily intervene in the Korean Peninsula. Previously, she was a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Politics and East Asian Studies at Oberlin College, a POSCO Visiting Fellow at the East-West Center, a nonresident James Kelly Korean Studies Fellow with the Pacific Forum CSIS, an East Asia Institute Fellow, and a Korea Foundation-Mansfield Foundation scholar of the U.S.-Korea Scholar-Policymaker Nexus program. Most recently, she served as the Korea Policy Chair and a senior political scientist at the RAND Corporation.

Dr. Mason Richey is professor of international politics at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (Seoul, South Korea), Senior Contributor at the Asia Society (Korea), and co-author of the tri-annual US-Korea relations analysis chapter in Pacific Forum’s Comparative Connections. His research articles on US, Korean, and European foreign/security/defense policy have appeared (inter alia) in Pacific Review, Global Governance, and Foreign Policy Analysis. Most recently he is co-editor of the volume The Future of the Korean Peninsula: 2032 and Beyond (Routledge, 2021).

Scott A. Snyder is senior fellow for Korea studies and director of the program on U.S.-Korea policy at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Mr. Snyder is the author of South Korea at the Crossroads: Autonomy and Alliance in an Era of Rival Powers (January 2018). Mr. Snyder also served as the project director for CFR’s Independent Task Force on policy toward the Korean Peninsula. Prior to joining CFR, Mr. Snyder was a senior associate in the international relations program of the Asia Foundation, where he founded and directed the Center for U.S.-Korea Policy and served as the Asia Foundation’s representative in Korea (2000–2004). He was also a senior associate at Pacific Forum Center for Strategic and International Studies. Mr. Snyder has worked as an Asia specialist in the research and studies program of the U.S. Institute of Peace and as acting director of Asia Society’s contemporary affairs program. He was a Pantech visiting fellow at Stanford University’s Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center during 2005–2006. Mr. Snyder received a BA from Rice University and an MA from the regional studies East Asia program at Harvard University.