Day 1 / Agents of Change on a Divided Peninsula
MARIUS GRINIUS joined the Canadian Foreign Service in 1979 after serving in the Canadian Army for 12 years. His early overseas postings included Bangkok, NATO/Brussels and Hanoi. Assignments back in Ottawa included desk officer for nuclear arms control, Director for Asia Pacific South and then Director for South East Asia. In 1997 he was posted back to Vietnam as Ambassador.
Marius spent 1999 to 2004 in Ottawa where he worked in the Privy Council Office in Social Policy, Western Economic Diversification and then again in the Privy Council Office as Director of Operations in the Security and Intelligence Secretariat. In 2004 he was named Ambassador to South Korea and added accreditation to North Korea in 2005. He made four official visits to Pyongyang. In 2007 Marius was posted to Geneva as Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations and the Conference on Disarmament. He returned to Ottawa in 2011 for a secondment to the Department of National Defence as Director General International Security Policy. Marius retired in 2012 after 45 years of service to Canada. He is a graduate of the Royal Military College, Class of 1971.
JENNIFER MCCANN is currently pursuing a doctorate in comparative politics at the University of Toronto. After graduating from Mount Allison University with a BA in international relations and Asian studies, she went on to earn an MA in Political Science at Yonsei University where her thesis addressed contemporary South Korean refugee policy. Her current research focuses on the intersection of international human rights norms and national identity in East Asian states. Jennifer is also a founding editor of a soon-to-be published interdisciplinary student journal associated with the Asian Institute at the University of Toronto. The journal’s objective is to foster greater dialogue among a wide range of scholars interested in the Asia Pacific region.
JACK KIM is the founder and former executive director of HanVoice, the largest organization in Canada advocating on behalf of North Korean human rights and refugees. He is also on the board of Jayu: The North Korean Human Rights Film Festival, and is the Managing Editor at Jangmadang, the only blog in Canada devoted completely to North Korean issues. He frequently consults decision-makers in Canada with regards to North Korean issues, and has been part of private consultations with the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, among others. During the day, Jack is an immigration lawyer at Fragomen (Canada), the largest immigration firm in the world.
DR. HYUNJIN SEO is an Assistant Professor of Strategic Communication in the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Kansas. Prior to her graduate studies, Seo was a foreign affairs correspondent for South Korean and international media outlets. During that time, she traveled extensively to cover major international events including six-party talks on North Korea’s nuclear issues and gatherings of world leaders such as the United Nations and Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit talks. Professor Seo’s current research interests lie at the intersection of digital media, civic engagement and international communication. She has conducted research on how social collaborative networks, facilitated by digital communication technologies, help mobilize movements or address social problems at local, national or international levels. She has also consulted to U.S. and Korea-based nongovernmental organizations regarding their social media strategies and relations with international press.
DR. MICHAEL ROBINSON is an Adjunct Professor of History and a Professor in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at Indiana University Bloomington. His research interests are focused on modern Korea in the early to mid-20th century, with a particular interest in the period of colonial rule between 1910-1945. His publications “Korea’s Twentieth Century Odyssey: A Short History” (2007) and “Korea Old and New: a History” (1991) are both widely used texts in lecture halls and classrooms on Korean history. Professor Robinson is currently writing a monograph on the origins, evolution and significance of broadcasting during the colonial period, and he teaches courses on Korean civilization, modern Korean history, the history of Asian immigration to the US, cultural identity and nationalism in East Asia, and East Asian popular culture.
Day 2: Korea in a Global Context
TINA JIWON PARK is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of History at the University of Toronto. Her doctoral research examines a century of Canadian-Korean relations from the 1880s to the 1980s, ranging from missionary encounter to trade and immigration. Tina is also a co-founder and executive director of the Canadian Centre for the Responsibility to Protect, a non-profit research organization based at the Munk School of Global Affairs. Tina has advised the Inter-Parliamentary Union on their recent resolution on the Responsibility to Protect principle. On campus, Tina teaches senior undergraduate students in the international relations program on modern history and Canadian foreign policy. A recipient of numerous awards for her scholarly and extra-curricular contributions, Tina is a member of the International Delta Kappa Gamma Fellowship and the Governing Council at the University of Toronto.
DR. SEUNG HYOK LEE is an Assistant Adjunct Professor at Renison University College (University of Waterloo) as well as the Project Coordinator of Japan Futures Initiative and Research Associate at the University of Waterloo. He is a visiting scholar affiliated with the Asian Institute at U of T, and a consultant for the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada’s “Canada-Korea Middle Power Strategies Project.” His research interests include the influence of societal dynamics on governments’ security foreign policy making process, with a regional focus on contemporary South Korea-Japan and Japan-North Korea bilateral relations. Dr. Lee is also interested in the theoretical analysis of foreign policy change with an emphasis on mass media, “opinion entrepreneurs,” and societal discourse, as well as the role of nationalism of domestic societies on inter-negotiations surrounding disputed territories and historical issues in East Asia.
CHRISTINE AHN is the founder of Women De-Militarize the Zone and initiator of a 2015 international women’s peace march across the de-militarized zone (DMZ) for peace and reunification of Korea. She is the co-founder of the Korea Policy Institute, Global Campaign to Save Jeju Island, National Campaign to End the Korean War and Korean Americans for Fair Trade. She is a policy analyst with expertise in Korea, globalization, militarism, women’s rights and philanthropy. She is the editor of Shafted: Free Trade and America’s Working Poor and contributor to The Revolution Will Not be Funded: Beyond the Nonprofit Industrial Complex. She has addressed Congress, the United Nations and the National Human Rights Commission in South Korea. Ms. Ahn is a regular commentator in the media, including Al-Jazeera, BBC, CNN, Democracy Now!, Huffington Post, NBC, NPR, and Voice of America. She is a columnist with Institute for Policy Studies’ Foreign Policy In Focus and The Nation, and her op-eds have appeared in The International Herald Tribune/The New York Times, Asia Times, and the San Francisco Chronicle. Ms. Ahn is Senior Fellow with the Oakland Institute and on the National Advisory Board of Peace Action. She has worked with Global Fund for Women, the Institute for Food and Development Policy/Food First, Grassroots Global Justice, and the Women of Color Resource Center. She helped produce Fashion Resistance to Militarism, a popular education fashion show on the impact of militarism on our lives that has been re-produced in over 20 cities globally. Ms. Ahn holds a master’s degree in public policy from Georgetown University and a certificate in ecological horticulture from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She has been inducted into the OMB Watch Public Interest Hall of Fame and recognized as a Rising Peacemaker by the Agape Foundation.
DONALD RICKERD is a graduate of Queen’s University, and has studied at St. Andrews University, Balliol College, Oxford and Osgoode Hall Law School. Formerly the Master of Winters College at York University, Mr. Rickerd has also served as the President of the Donner Canadian Foundation, the W. H. Donner Foundation in New York, and the Max Bell Foundation. Currently, he is the Associate Director of the Asian Business and Management Program at York University and is a Senior Fellow of Massey College.
KWANG-KYUN CHUNG , Consul General of the Republic of Korea in Toronto, joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea in 1985. After he joined the Ministry, he went to graduate school in Law at the National Cheng-Che University in Taipei, Taiwan. With 28 years of experience as a foreign diplomat, he has not only served in many different embassies and Consulates such as Los Angeles, Singapore, Beijing and Tokyo but also took on the roles of director for the Asian Affairs bureau, South-West Asia and Oceania division, and China division of the Ministry. Also, he was appointed as a director-general for foreign and security policy at the Prime Minister’s Office in 2010. As Consul General of the Republic of Korea in Toronto since 2011, Mr. Chung has continued to make a greater effort to further strengthening Korea’s cooperative relations with Ontario and Manitoba in every field including trade, investment, culture, education, tourism and etc.