About the Korea Economic Institute (KEI)


KEI was founded as the first U.S. “non-profit” institution or “think-tank” in 1982 solely dedicated to promoting dialogue and understanding between the Republic of Korea (ROK) and the United States on economic, political, and security relations.

KEI is led by President & CEO Donald Manzullo, J.D., former Chairman of the Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, and Vice President Mark Tokola, LL.M., a 38-year veteran U.S. diplomat and former Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Seoul.

  1. Academic Symposium: since 1989, KEI has organized four panels of experts to present papers on issues related to the Korean peninsula at academic conferences. KEI now attends the annual International Studies Association conference. The papers discussed at this symposium are subsequently published in KEI’s Joint U.S.-Korea Academic Studies journal.
  2. Academic Paper Series: since 2008, KEI has recruited 8 to 12 outside scholars each year to present papers at KEI on timely topics related to the Korean peninsula. The papers are then subsequently published annually in KEI’s On Korea journal.
  3. Korea’s Economy: since 1984, KEI and the Korea Institute for International Economic (KIEP) have annually recruited 8 to 12 outside scholars, usually equally divided between Korean and non-Korean authors, to write papers for this economic-themed journal published by KEI.
  4. University Programs: since 1993, KEI has travelled to approximately 12 to 15 colleges and universities across North America each year to discuss U.S.-Korea relations with interested students. Typically, there is a U.S.-Korea policy forum with outside experts; a career panel discussion; and Six Party Talks simulation exercise where students role-play diplomats from the respective countries in the denuclearization negotiations with North Korea.
  5. Future of Korea: since 2001, KEI has partnered with the World Affairs Council to bring representatives from the U.S. State Department and the Korean Embassy to visit 6 to 8 cities across the U.S. every year and discuss the latest in U.S.-Korea relations with Americans outside of Washington, D.C. who are interested in foreign policy and international trade.
  6. Ambassadors' Dialogue: since 1992, KEI has escorted the U.S. Ambassador to Korea and the Korean Ambassador to the U.S. to 4 or 5 U.S. cities to discuss the latest in U.S.-Korea relations before interested civic, academic, and business audiences.
  7. Opinion Leaders Seminar: since 2001, KEI and KIEP have co-hosted an off-the-record Track 1.5 forum at KEI for top policy experts from both Korea and the U.S. to engage directly in a confidential and frank exchange of views on U.S.-Korea economic, political, and security issues.
  8. Korean-America Day: since 2008, on or around January 13th of every year, KEI has hosted a marquee luncheon in Washington, D.C. to honor the contributions of Korean-Americans to U.S. society.
  9. National Assembly Visit: once a year, KEI invites between 7 to 9 members of the Korean National Assembly to update their knowledge on U.S.-Korea relations through meetings and dialogue with key U.S. policymakers and thought-leaders on Korean affairs.
  10. Korea Club: since 1996, KEI has helped host approximately 9 dinner events each year at a Korean restaurant in Northern Virginia for interested Washingtonians to hear from prominent experts, in an informal setting, discuss issues related to the Korean peninsula.

In addition, KEI hosts special programs in response to current events outside the framework of the abovementioned signature initiatives such as the forum that analyzed the results of the 2014 Congressional mid-term elections and its effect on U.S. relations with Northeast Asia.

KEI also maintains an active website (www.keia.org) that features live-streaming of KEI public events; The Peninsula Blog; Korean Kontext podcasts; a robust social media presence (Twitter, Facebook etc.); and a daily compilation of the most important news stories from Korea (written in English).

KEI is a non-for-profit, educational organizations partnered with the Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP) (http://www.kiep.go.kr/eng/), a public policy research institute funded by the Government of the Republic of Korea. KEI is registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) as an agent of KIEP. The required registration statement and the materials on this website are available for public inspection at the Department of Justice. Registration does not indicate U.S. government approval of the contents of this website. KEI is not engaged in the practice of law, does not render legal services, and is not a lobbying organization.