School of Global and International Studies announces new faculty, including chair in Korean studies

Former Ambassador Mark Minton and Asia-Pacific relations and security expert Adam Liff also join faculty

  • June 22, 2015


BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University’s School of Global and International Studies has announced three new and important faculty appointments -- including its first endowed chair in Korean studies -- that deepen IU’s longstanding commitment to the study of East Asian and Pacific nations.

Seung-kyung Kim will become the founding Korea Foundation Chair in Korean Studies and director of IU's new Institute on Korean Studies and serve as a professor in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures. She is currently the chair of the Department of Women’s Studies and director of the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Maryland, where she also served as founding director of the Asian-American Studies Program.

Lee A. Feinstein, dean of the School of Global and International Studies, said these three faculty appointments are only the beginning of an ambitious effort to enhance IU’s traditional strengths while adding new dimensions.

“Deepening IU's longstanding commitment to the study of Asia is a top priority in light of the growing role of Asia and the Pacific," Feinstein said.  "With these new colleagues, we are significantly expanding the scholarly and career opportunities available to our talented students."  

Also joining the School of Global and International Studies is Mark C. Minton, president of The Korea Society in New York, former U.S. ambassador to Mongolia and a diplomat for more than 30 years, who will become a professor of practice in East Asian studies and diplomacy.

Adam Liff, a post-doctoral fellow in the Princeton-Harvard China and the World Program, will join the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures as an assistant professor.

The Korea Foundation Chair in Korean Studies has been made possible through the generosity of the Korea Foundation, the key institution for Korea's public diplomacy launched in 1991 to broaden understanding of Korea in the global community; as well as donations from alumni Young-Jin Kim and William (Won Suk) Joo, and a third, anonymous Korean alumnus.

In 2012, IU announced that a $1.5 million grant from the Korea Foundation and the three Korean IU alumni would establish the university's first endowed chair in Korean studies. It also was the first endowed chair to be established in the school.

The School of Global and International Studies is investing in global studies, adding more than 25 new tenure track positions to its 250 core and affiliated faculty. In August, the school will move into a new $53 million state-of-the-art building, where more than 70 languages will be taught. 

“I am really excited about the future of Korean studies at Indiana University, which has already established itself as a leader in area studies in the U.S.,” Kim said. “I look forward to this unique opportunity to expand and strengthen Korean studies at Indiana and position the university in the vanguard of Korean studies in the U.S.”

More about the new SGIS faculty members:

In addition to her appointment in women’s studies, Kim also serves on the faculty in the departments of anthropology, American studies and Asian-American studies at Maryland. A Fulbright Fellow in Korea in 2004-05, she focuses her research on the intersection of transnational migration, education and the family.

Kim is a fellow of the Korean Family in Comparative Perspective Laboratory for the Globalization of Korean Studies, funded by the Academy of Korean Studies. She received her doctorate in anthropology and graduate certificate in women’s studies from the City University of New York.

Her publications include “Class Struggle or Family Struggle?: Lives of Women Factory Workers in South Korea" (Cambridge University Press, 1997; reissued in paperback in 2007 ), “The Korean Women’s Movement and the State: Bargaining for Change" (Routledge, 2014) and "Feminist Theory Reader: Local and Global Perspective" (Routledge 2003, 2009, 2013).

She is working on a book project titled, “Global Citizens in the Making?: Transnational Migration and Education in Kirŏgi Families,” which was funded by the Social Science Research Council.

Minton joined The Korea Society as president in 2010. Before joining, he played a leading role in America's relations with Asia during a distinguished 32-year career as a senior foreign-service officer. He served as U.S. ambassador to Mongolia from September 2006 to September 2009 and was deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Seoul, Korea.

He also served as the country director for Korea and as deputy country director for Japan, as well as serving in other positions at the U.S. Department of State, in various diplomatic posts in Japan, as a Pearson Fellow with the U.S. Senate and at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations. He previously taught for a year as the Diplomat-in-Residence at the City College of New York. He earned a master’s degree in history from Yale University.

Liff also is a research associate at Harvard University’s Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies and at the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies. His primary fields of research are international relations and security studies, with a focus on contemporary security issues in the Asia-Pacific region. He earned his doctorate in politics from Princeton University.

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Seung-kyung Kim

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Mark C. Minton

Mark C. Minton

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