Kim Koo Forum on Korea Current Affairs; Co-sponsored by the Korea Working Group at the Harvard Kennedy School, and Harvard Asia Center
Senior Advisor and Korea Chair, Center for Strategic and International Studies; D.S. Song-KF Professor of Government, Georgetown University
Professor Victor D. Cha holds the D.S. Song-KF Professorship in Government and International Affairs at Georgetown University. In 2009, he was also named as Senior Adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C.
He left the White House in 2007 after serving since 2004 as Director for Asian Affairs at the National Security Council. At the White House, he was responsible primarily for Japan, the Korean peninsula, Australia/New Zealand and Pacific Island nation affairs. Dr. Cha was also the Deputy Head of Delegation for the United States at the Six Party Talks in Beijing, and received two Outstanding Service commendations during his tenure at the NSC.
He is the author of five books, including the award-winning Alignment Despite Antagonism: The United States-Korea-Japan Security Triangle (Stanford University Press) (winner of the 2000 Ohira Book Prize), and The Impossible State: North Korea, Past and Future (Harper Collins Ecco, 2012) which was selected by Foreign Affairs as a “Best Book on the Asia-Pacific for 2012.” His newest book is Powerplay: Origins of the American Alliance System in Asia (Princeton University Press, 2016). He is also co-authoring a new book, Korea After Unification: Planning for the Inevitable to be published by Columbia University Press. He published articles on international relations and East Asia in journals including Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, International Security, Political Science Quarterly, Survival, International Studies Quarterly, International Journal of the History of Sport, and Asian Survey. Professor Cha is a former John M. Olin National Security Fellow at Harvard University, two-time Fulbright Scholar, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Scholar at Columbia University, and Hoover National Fellow, CISAC Fellow, and William J. Perry Fellow at Stanford University. He is a Fellow in Human Freedom (non-resident) at the George W. Bush Institute in Dallas, Texas.
Dr. Cha is a dedicated teacher and academician. He holds Georgetown’s Distinguished Principal Investigator Award for 2016, the Dean’s Teaching Award for 2010 and the Distinguished Research Award for 2011. He founded in 2012 Georgetown’s Master’s degree in Asian Studies and brought a U.S. Department of Education Title VI grant in East Asia to the University for the first time in Georgetown’s history in 2009. He has served on every major committee assignment at the University, including the University’s Rank and Tenure Committee as a presidential appointment.
Dr. Cha serves on nine editorial boards of academic journals and is co-editor of the Contemporary Asia Book Series at Columbia University Press. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Fulbright Association. He has been the principal investigator on nineteen major research grant projects ranging between $40,000 and $1.6 million from private foundations and the U.S. government.
He has testified before Congress numerous times on Asian security issues. In 2018, he joined NBC and MSNBC as a News Contributor. Prior to joining NBC, he had been a guest analyst for various media including CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, The Colbert Report, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, Fox News, PBS, Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal, MSNBC, CNBC, BBC, and National Public Radio. His op-eds have appeared in the Washington Post, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Foreign Policy, Japan Times, and Financial Times. He is a Senior Adviser to Teneo Intelligence, and works as an independent consultant helping clients in sectors ranging from business and finance to entertainment.
Dr. Cha received his Ph.D. in political science at Columbia University in 1994, his Master’s in International Affairs from Columbia in 1988, M.A. Honours in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Oxford University (Hertford College), and A.B. in Economics from Columbia in 1979.
Chaired by Carter Eckert, Yoon Se Young Professor of Korean History, Harvard University
The Korea Institute acknowledges the generous support of the Kim Koo Foundation.