About Us


Sino-NK analysts are a community bound by common concerns for scholarship, transnational studies, and analytical rigor. The Korean peninsula is the center of our analytical gaze, but the region around it plays a vital role. Likewise, our individual production is accompanied by a concern for professional development and mentoring.

Founded in December 2011 by a group of young academics committed to the study of Northeast Asia, Sino-NK focuses on the Sino-North Korean borderlands and the transnational links that bind China, the DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, or North Korea), and the Republic of Korea (or South Korea). Using multiple languages and an array of disciplinary methodologies, Sino-NK provides a steady stream of China-DPRK and DPRK-South Korea documentation and analysis covering the culture, history, economies, and foreign relations of these complex nation-states.

Work published on Sino-NK has been cited in such standard journalistic outlets as The Economist, International Herald Tribune, and Wall Street Journal, and our analysts have been featured in a range of academic publications, including Asian Perspective, North Korean Review, Review of Korean Studies, and Korea Analysis, to name but a few. Ultimately, Sino-NK seeks to function as a bridge between media discourses and a more specialized world, that of the academic and think tank debates that focus their research and analyses around the China, the DPRK, and the Republic of Korea.

Evolution of Sino-NK

In late 2011, Adam Cathcart founded SinoNK.com using a standard weblog platform with a mission to develop Sino-NK into a “premier resource for the study of contemporary Chinese influence in North Korea, the Chinese outlook on the DPRK, the historical relations between the Workers’ Party of Korea and Chinese Communist Party, and the shadows cast over the relationship by the (ongoing) Korean War.” He was joined shortly thereafter by Charles Kraus as co-editor, along with Steven Denney and Darcie Draudt as senior editors. Dr. Cathcart’s initial objective has since been accomplished, and a new broader objective proclaimed: “analyzing the borderland dynamics, transnational ties, and history of Northeast Asia.” The arrival of Christopher Green, a respected journalist and North Korean specialist, in July 2012 greatly accelerated the possibility of this new mission.

As an evolving organization, our standards for disseminating information and analysis have progressively increased since Sino-NK’s establishment. In the summer of 2013, the editors of Sino-NK decided to expand operations by upgrading the website and expanding the remit of Sino-NK’s analytical reach.

After transitioning to a new web platform on September 17, 2013, Sino-NK re-doubled its efforts at professionalization and maintaining high standards for research, writing, and editing. What began as an individual academic weblog developed into a hub for reliable analysis, source translation, and grant-funded outputs, frequently cited by journalists and academics and inclusive of essays by, interviews with, and reviews of some of the top scholars and practitioners in the field.

Sino-NK is currently transitioning to a platform for promoting working papers and new research, reviewing new publications in the field, and providing knowledge translations for its member’s scholarly publications.