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Stephan Haggard

Director of the Korea-Pacific Program
UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy
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About Stephan Haggard

Stephan Haggard is a member of the Board of Directors at the Korea Economic Institute and the Lawrence and Sallye Krause Professor of Korea-Pacific Studies at UC San Diego. He also serves as the university’s director of the Korea-Pacific Program. He teaches courses on the international relations of the Asia-Pacific at UC San Diego’s School of Global Policy and Strategy covering political economy as well as security issues. He has done extensive research on North Korea in particular. In addition, he has a long-standing interest in transitions to and from democratic rule and the current phenomenon of democratic backsliding.

His most recent books include “Developmental States” (2018) on the rapid growth of East Asia. His work on North Korea includes three books with Marcus Noland: “Famine in North Korea: Markets, Aid and Reform” (2007), “Witness to Transformation: Refugee Insights into North Korea” (2011) and “Hard Target: Sanctions, Inducements and the Case of North Korea” (2017). His work on transitions to and from democratic rule includes “Dictators and Democrats: Masses, Elites and Regime Change” (2016) and the forthcoming “Backsliding: Democratic Regress in the Contemporary World” (2020).

He has provided commentary for major news outlets, such as CNN International and currently writes for the Korea Economic Institute’s Peninsula blog. He is editor of the Journal of East Asian Studies.

Dr. Haggard received his doctorate in political science from UC Berkeley.

The Moon administration had three overlapping--yet subtly distinct--motives in responding to the invasion of Ukraine. The first is a global public goods rationale: to stand against a blatant violation of international norms. This rationale has figured centrally in South Korean policy statements so far, and has put Korea in a follower position, looking to the…

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Region: Europe, Asia

May 17, 2022

There is a long tradition of considering North Korean leaders’ public appearances as a potential source of information on the regime’s priorities (see for example: Haggard, Herman, and Ryu; Pyo and Hur; Kim and Lee).  We now have ten full years of this data for Kim Jong-un through the South Korea Ministry of Unification portal,…

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Region: Asia

April 15, 2022

Given the paucity of data on North Korea, the food prices provided by Rimjingang and DailyNK are often used for a variety of analytic purposes: to monitor seasonal fluctuations that most affect the poor; as a wider proxy for inflation; and as an indicator of larger constraints on the economy, including sanctions and the border…

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Region: Asia

March 31, 2022

In a previous post, we asked the question of whether the Korean electorate was becoming more polarized, looking at the ideological differences across all citizens and those who identified most strongly with the two major parties. Our findings were that politics was becoming somewhat more polarized, but more sharply among partisans than the general public.…

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Region: Asia

Most analysis of the extended nuclear crisis that first broke in 2002 has focused, quite legitimately, on the realm of high politics: the diplomatic and military strategies of the contending…

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Region: Asia

October 6, 2016

Park Geun-hye’s Trustpolitik envisioned incremental, step-by-step exchanges, including economic ones, that would build trust. The strategy was disrupted by North Korean provocations during the first half of 2013 and had…

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Region: Asia

June 16, 2014

During the 1972 U.S. presidential campaign, “Deep Throat,” later revealed to be Associate Director Mark Felt of the FBI, counseled Washington Post journalists Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein to “follow…

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Region: Asia