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Kyle Ferrier

Fellow and Director of Academic Affairs
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About Kyle Ferrier

Kyle Ferrier joined KEI as Fellow and Director of Academic Affairs in 2015. He is charged with managing KEI’s efforts to foster collaboration between the academic and policy communities.

As part of his responsibilities, Mr. Ferrier is editor of KEI’s On Korea and Joint U.S.-Korea Academic Studies publications, working with editor-in-chief Gilbert Rozman on the latter. He also oversees KEI’s university programs, which reach hundreds of college students in the United States each year through organized lectures on timely Korea-related issues as well as a simulation on multilateral negotiations with North Korea.

Mr. Ferrier writes on U.S.-Korea relations, South Korean foreign affairs, South Korean domestic and international economic policy, and the political economy of the Asia-Pacific. He has been quoted in numerous media outlets, including the Wall Street Journal and U.S. News & World Report, and is a regular contributor to KEI’s blog, The Peninsula, and The Diplomat.

Prior to joining KEI, Mr. Ferrier worked for the Bank of New York Mellon and was a Program Assistant in the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration at the U.S. State Department. He was also a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant for the 2011-2012 grant year in Naju, South Korea. During his time in Korea, he led his students in a U.S. embassy-sponsored youth diplomacy program in Seoul, volunteered with North Korean escapees, and completed a Korean language course at Seogang University. He has held internships at the Korea Institute for National Unification, U.S. State Department, U.S. Department of Commerce, and with Senator Charles Schumer at the height of the 2008 financial crisis.

Mr. Ferrier holds an MSc in International Political Economy from the London School of Economics and a B.A. in Economics and Government and International Politics from George Mason University.

You can follow Kyle on Twitter at @kylecferrier

International observers were shocked when President Trump met with North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un in June 2018. But amid the spectacle of these two leaders putting aside their infamous…

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We are amidst a pandemic – its victims will not only be the sick but also those who will lose their livelihood as the economy shuts down to contain the…

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April 3, 2020

As of March 6, there are over 6,500 reported coronavirus cases in South Korea. It is currently the country with the second-largest number of coronavirus patients. The large number, however,…

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March 6, 2020

Do countries need allies? Do alliances necessarily require the member countries to set aside their national interests? These are the questions that the Trump administration has posed with its America-first…

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February 7, 2020

The Trump administration’s increased emphasis on the cost of the U.S.-South Korea alliance has called into question its appreciation of Seoul’s contributions and raised concerns about the future of the…

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Region: Asia

December 5, 2019

Most South Korean conglomerates have weathered the shortage much better than their global competitors. But KEI’s Kyle Ferrier notes in his latest article for the Diplomat Magazine that this could…

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April 1, 2021

In his latest column for the Diplomat Magazine, KEI Director of Academic Affairs and Fellow Kyle Ferrier noted that new challenges still need to be faced even as the Biden…

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March 12, 2021

Proposal Submission Deadline: Friday, December 4, 2020 The Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI) is issuing a call for papers for the next round of its Academic Paper Series—a program…

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October 8, 2020

There have not yet been any fatalities from the coronavirus in South Korea. Nonetheless, the public health risk is poised to have an outsized economic and political impact on the…

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February 13, 2020

Please join us for a discussion on what the THAAD dispute tells us about when public diplomacy and soft power does and does not work

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Region: Asia

April 16, 2021
Kyle Ferrier, Yong Kwon, Maximilian Ernst

President Moon Jae-in has set ambitious targets to improve South Korea’s air quality and reduce its carbon footprint, but realizing these goals will not be an easy task. While increased reliance on renewable energy is central to these plans, there are short- to medium-term limitations in scaling up production to meet high demand. Combined with planned phaseouts of nuclear and coal power, liquified natural gas (LNG) is expected to play a pivotal role in South Korea’s pursuit of balancing energy needs and environmental concerns. However, reliance on LNG brings its own unique set of issues that policymakers must successfully navigate to ensure the transition to renewables and thus net-zero carbon emissions.

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Commentators have pointed to the “Trump Effect” for falling international student enrollment in the U.S. higher education sector. When taking a closer look at student mobility trends from South Korea, however, the facts and figures tell a different story. For the past two decades, South Korea has been consistently the third largest sender of international students to the United States. But the number of South Korean students who study in U.S. higher education has been steadily falling well before the more recent general declines in international student enrollment.

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November 9, 2020
Kyle Ferrier, Dr. Stephanie Kim

After more than a year since the previous one expired, the U.S. and South Korea finally agreed to terms for a new military burden-sharing deal. The Special Measures Agreement (SMA) had previously been hostage to former U.S. President Donald Trump’s transactional approach to alliances which proved to be a looming threat to U.S.- Korea ties.…

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Region: Asia, North America

March 18, 2021

We were reminded last year that it can be difficult to anticipate the events that will dominate any given year. As 2020 began, few people expected focus of the world or the Korean Peninsula to be on a global pandemic, but that is how the year unfolded. South Korea has handled the pandemic relatively well…

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On Sunday November 15 the countries party to the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) announced that trade negotiations had successfully concluded after several years of delays. The deal will be the largest free trade agreement (FTA) in Asia and is expected to create new opportunities for growth, including for South Korea. The idea of an…

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Region: Asia

November 23, 2020
Kyle Ferrier, Sophie Joo

By Kyle Ferrier With daily new COVID-19 cases rising to over 400 recently, South Korea finds itself on the brink of a second outbreak of the virus. Looming over the possible outbreak is the government’s decision whether to elevate social distancing measures to contain the spread of infections at the expense of, at least in…

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August 28, 2020