Economic Policy

Armilliara and Sunshine: From Kim Jong-il’s Fungal Diplomacy to the Mushroom Institute of Pyongyang

By | November 22, 2013

Robert Winstanley-Chesters follows the trail of North Korean charismatic politics deep into the developmental realm, from fungus’ place under the Sunshine policy to the recently rebuilt Central Mushroom Institute.

Peacemaker or Political Hostage? Prospects for the Moscow-Busan “Iron Silk Road Express”

By | November 11, 2013

The promise of profit and increased political stability in Northeast Asia are attractive to Moscow and Seoul, but do the potential benefits of the “Iron Silk Road Express” outweigh the risks that come with investing in North Korea? Sabine van Ameijden evaluates.

Forget about the “Trustpolitik,” Let’s Talk Won

By | November 07, 2013

Trust can come in many forms, but in Korea there is a serious lack of it. According to Professor Jin Jingyi of Peking University, the key is to transit away from futile attempts to foster political trust, and onto an “economics-first,” or “trusteconomik” if you prefer, approach. Steven Denney explains.

A Primer on North Korea’s Economy: An Interview with Andrei Lankov

By | October 11, 2013

In the modern era of North Korean marketization, the scope and substance of the North Korean economy are hard to establish. Nevertheless, in this new interview with Peter Ward, Professor Andrei Lankov of Kookmin University does his best to describe the current state of affairs.

Reining in Rent-Seeking: How North Korea Can Survive

By | July 02, 2013

Peter Ward proposes that the North Korean regime can reconcile the seemingly contradictory concepts of “state rule” and “market economy” by reining in rent-seeking from low- and mid-level bureaucrats and harnessing the power of the markets.

Growth Prospects and the Potential for Progress in the DPRK’s Agricultural Sector: Infrastructure and Incentives

By | June 23, 2013

Matthew Bates completes his discussion with agronomist Tom Morrison on the prospects of food self-sufficiency in North Korea. In the final installment of a three part series, Morrison finishes his discussion of agricultural reforms and delves into a dialogue about the geography of rice and potato production.