Experts on North Korea, nuclearization to host UWM talk on Sept. 20

International political efforts to transform the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea from a regime shrouded in secrecy to a fledgling democracy are considered daunting but necessary by political experts.

In the words of leading politicians and political scientists, North Korea is all of these things:

  • “A serious threat to the U.S. and the rest of the world.”
  • “A completely closed and controlled society.”
  • “A de facto nuclear state.”

A Sept. 20 event at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee will provide expert insight into the North Korean nuclear dilemma so that Midwestern citizens can have a better understanding of what is happening on the Korean Peninsula.

Uk Heo

Uk Heo, distinguished professor of political science at UWM, and Gi-Wook Shin, Stanford University professor of sociology, two leading international relations scholars with deep expertise on Korean political and security affairs, will headline “What is Next in North Korea: Denuclearization and the DPRK Regime,” a free public talk from 4-5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 20, in UWM’s Cunningham Hall, Room 151, 1921 E. Hartford Ave. The talk will be moderated by Nan Kim, UWM associate professor of history, who will take questions from the audience starting around 4:45 p.m.

Gi-Wook Shin

Heo and Shin have written a combined 26 books and have published more than 130 articles on Asian politics, security and economics. Kim is author of the recently published “Memory, Reconciliation and Reunions in South Korea: Crossing the Divide.”

“Peace and stability on the Korean peninsula is not an issue that only matters to Koreans,” said Hyeon-Seon Choi, director of the event’s sponsoring organization, the Korea Foundation. “It has a larger and greater implication for the rest of the world. Many do not have access to details and insights into the North Korean nuclear problem, and thus, it is of critical importance that the general American public has the opportunity to be part of the solution. I think it is important that we engage the public in Milwaukee in a dynamic discussion on the topic of North Korea and its implication for the rest of the world, especially the U.S.”

Nan Kim

Since its inception in 1991, the Korea Foundation has served as a bridge from South Korea to the rest of the world, connecting South Koreans to the global community through a variety of academic and cultural programs and activities. In addition to the UWM event, the Foundation will host a public talk with Heo and Shin at the University of Wisconsin-Madison on Wednesday, Sept. 19.

For information and special accommodations for this free public event, please e-mail

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