5th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center

Understanding the North Korean Regime: Research Perspectives from Japan and the United States

North Korea’s nuclear aspirations remain one of the greatest security challenges to Asia and beyond. Yet the ability to identify opportunities to constrain Pyongyang’s nuclear capabilities is limited by misunderstandings about the impenetrability, irrationality, and unpredictability of the regime which clouds strategic thinking. To overcome such misconceptions, greater efforts must be made to shed light not only on North Korean domestic politics, but also Pyongyang’s own strategic priorities and the significance of nuclear weapons. Join us for a discussion on comparative approaches to studying contemporary North Korea, understanding sources of regime resilience, and identifying forces that have shaped Pyongyang’s strategic thinking over the decades.

Registration begins at 9:15 am, a light breakfast will be provided.

The Wilson Center Asia Program's Japan Scholar Fellowship is made possible through the generous support of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation.


  • Atsuhito Isozaki

    Japan Scholar
    Associate Professor, Faculty of Law, Keio University
  • James Person

    Global Fellow
    Professor of Korean Studies and Asia Programs, JHU SAIS; Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Institute, SAIS
  • Celeste Arrington

    Korea Foundation Assistant Professor of Political Science, George Washington University
  • Robert L. Carlin

    Visiting Fellow, Center for International Security and Cooperation, Stanford University