Skip navigation
The Australian National University

Dr Yongwook Ryu

PhD (Harvard) BA (Hons) Auckland
Research Fellow
ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
T: 2 + 6125 7639

Areas of expertise

  • International Relations 160607
  • Government And Politics Of Asia And The Pacific 160606

Research interests

International relations theory with a focus on East Asia

Foreign Policies of China, Japan, and Korea

Economic statecraft

ASEAN, with a focus on conflict management and human rights

International organisation


Dr. Ryu was born in South Korea and grew up both in Korea and New Zealand.  He first completed his BA in Economics and Politics and International Relations at Victoria University of Wellington, graduating top of his class with K J Scott Memorial Prize.  He then moved to The University of Auckland for his BA (Hons) in Political Studies, where he graduated with First Class Honours.  Later he went on to do his AM and PhD in Government (or political science) at Harvard University as a Frank Knox Fellow, where he specialised in International Relations.

His main research expertise covers international relations of East Asia, the foreign policies of China, Japan, and Korea, ASEAN, and identity politics.  His PhD dissertation examined the different patterns of interstate relations between Northeast and Southeast Asia since the 1980s, and showed how identity-related issues have affected the contrasting evolution of interstate interactions in the two sub-regions of East Asia.  He has completed a book monograph based on his PhD thesis.

His current research projects focus on several topics.  First, he is working on two book-length projects that investigate into China's economic statecraft and historical issues in contemporary Korean politics and foreign policy.  In addition, he has three journal article projects: (1) China's threat percept of Japan; (2) socialisation within ASEAN; (3) the effect of the 'history problem'.

Dr. Ryu enjoys outdoor activities, plays the saxophone, and loves traveling and photography.  In short, he is healthy in mind and body. 

Researcher's projects

Book-Length Projects

  • China's Economic Statecraft
  • The Shadow of the Past: Historical Issues in Contemporay Korean Politics and Foreign Policy
  • Identity and Security: Identity Distance Theory and Regional Affairs in Northeast and Southeast Asia

Article-Length Projects

  • National Identity and Audience Costs: Evidence from a Survey Experiment in Japan
  • China Eyes Japan: The 'History Problem', Aggressive Intentions, and China's Threat Perception of Japan
  • Who Cares About the 'History Problem'?
  • Socialisation Within ASEAN: A Case Study of the ASEAN Secretariat

Current student projects

PhD Thesis Supervision

  • Denghua Zhang, PhD Student, "Dragon Turns Humble? Factors Driving China's Growing Aid Cooperation"

MA Thesis Supervision

  • Nagiko Hasumi (2014), "PM Abe's Political Conservatism: Analysis of Constitutional Revisionism and the 'Comfort Women' Issue.

Past student projects

MA Thesis Supervision

  • Itgel Chuluunbaatar (2013) "Mongolia's Threat Perception of China"
  • Setthapol Pacharapasitkul (2013) "China's Activism in the ASEAN Regional Forum: Beijing's Strategic Calculation vs Socialisation of China into Cooperative Norms"
  • Jian Ming Yeo (2012) "The Tale of Two Disputes: The Negotiation Attitudes and the Contrasting Outcomes of Pedra Branca and Preah Vihear Disputes"
  • Navhat Nuraniyah (2012) "Indonesia's Partial Compliance with Anti-Trafficking Treaty"

Return to top

Updated:  23 April 2014 / Responsible Officer:  Pro VC (Research and Research Training) / Page Contact:  Researchers