Joseph Kim

Associate and Expert-in-Residence, Freedom and Democracy
George W. Bush Institute

Joseph Kim serves as Associate and Expert-in-Residence, Freedom and Democracy at the George W. Bush Institute. He was born and raised in North Korea. At the age of 12, his father died of starvation and he was separated from his mother and sister.

In 2006, Joseph escaped North Korea and went to China. In China, he connected with an international NGO called Liberty in North Korea (LiNK). A year later, he left China for the United States and claimed refugee status under the North Korean Human Rights Act, signed by President George W. Bush in 2004. 

In 2013, Joseph delivered a TED Talk on the importance of hope and published a memoir, “Under the Same Sky”. Joseph interned as a research assistant at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Korea Chair. He is a former America Needs You Fellow and Council of Korean Americans PSI Intern.

He completed a B.A. in political studies from Bard College and published a thesis titled, “Marketization in North Korea is Corrupting the Corrupted”.

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Read the article Sharing My Story at My Alma Mater, Bard College.
Sep 14, 2021

Sharing My Story at My Alma Mater, Bard College

By: Joseph Kim
Joseph Kim, Assistant and Expert in Residence on the Human Freedom Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute, returned to his alma mater, Bard College, last month to speak to students as part of the school's Language and Thinking Rostrum Series. Kim graduated from Bard in 2019 and the discussion was moderated by one of his former professors, Peter Rosenblum.
Read the article Hannah Song -- Liberty in North Korea.
Nov 3, 2020

Hannah Song -- Liberty in North Korea

Hosted by: Andrew Kaufmann, Joseph Kim

Hannah Song, CEO of Liberty in North Korea, dreams of a day when all of the people of North Korea can enjoy freedom -- and is doing everything she can to make that come true, one individual at a time.

Read the article Another U.S. - North Korea Summit is a Win for North Korea.
Jul 24, 2020

Another U.S. - North Korea Summit is a Win for North Korea

By: Joseph Kim
In July, South Korean President Moon Jae-in proposed another U.S.-North Korea summit before the U.S. presidential election in November. The Bush Institute’s Expert-In-Residence, Joseph Kim, explains why this would only be a win for North Korea.
Read the article Suppression of Information Empowers North Korea’s Regime.
Jun 30, 2020

Suppression of Information Empowers North Korea’s Regime

By: Joseph Kim
The absence of a press not only prevents North Korean citizens from realizing and maximizing their full potentials and liberties, but also poses significant security challenges for the U.S. government in its dealings with the North Korean regime.
Read the article Will Kim Jong-un’s Death Bring the North Korean Regime to an End?.
May 11, 2020

Will Kim Jong-un’s Death Bring the North Korean Regime to an End?

By: Joseph Kim
Kim Jong-un’s recent reappearance put the rumor that he was dead to rest. The story, although proven false, begged an important question—would Kim Jong-un’s death bring the North Korean regime to an end? The Bush Institute's Joseph Kim weighs in.