Ongoing Research

I am currently working on a few exciting projects. Here are the ones that I am currently working on (while there are a few paused projects). I will make all replication files available for these projects. For some, I plan to publish R packages as well. If you are interested in any one of them, feel free to reach out to me.

U.S. public diplomacy datasets

By extracting data from ACPD and State Department pdf reports, I created a few unique datasets on U.S. public diplomacy. The data includes the US’ public diplomacy expenditure, the number of local and American public diplomacy staff at diplomatic posts in 176 countries, and USAGM’s budget for each broadcasting service between 2014 and 2023.

To complement this quantitative dataset, I have also extracted the word frequencies of country names through distant-reading. See this blog post for an overview of the word frequency data.

I was awarded the 2023-2024 Fulbright Visiting Scholar Program to continue to work on this research project at the Institute for Public Diplomacy and Global Communication at George Washington University while on sabbatical leave, but I had to forego that opportunity for personal reasons.

I presented the findings at USAGM, as well as the 2024 ISA Annual Congress. As of early 2024, Steven V. Miller joined me in this project.

Korean high-level diplomatic visits

I created a dataset of Korean presidents’ (1948-2023), prime ministers’ (2000-2023), and other high-level authorities’ (2000-2023) diplomatic visits abroad. I run cross-sectional time-series logistic regression models of their visits. I presented preliminary findings at ISA 2023 and 2024 annual congresses in Montreal and San Francisco as well as a workshop organized by Pacific Affairs in Toronto in March 2023. This dataset became the starting point of Korean Diplomacy Data Hub.

Korea’s COVID-19 aid

I created a dataset for this research project, and wrote a working paper for KEI on a similar topic. With my co-author Jeheung Ryu, we presented the preliminary findings at ISA 2023 Annual Conference in Montreal, 2022 International Conference for Public Diplomacy, and Korean Association for International Studies 2022 Annual Conference. This paper is currently under review.

U.S. overseas diplomatic missions’ budget

I built a dataset (panel data) with U.S. overseas missions’ budget as the main variable of interest and information on the host countries (trade with the US, trade dependence on Russia and China, terrorist attacks, US troops, UNGA voting similarity with the US etc.). This dataset is complementary to the aforementioned U.S. public diplomacy spending dataset.

Public Diplomacy in Other Words

This is a very exciting project I am organizing for Journal of Public Diplomacy. Public diplomacy scholarship remains an English-language sub-field with few cross-linguistic conversations. With the aim of facilitating inclusiveness and dialogue in public diplomacy research, I launched a special issue initiative to compare non-English public diplomacy literature. In this project, the authors systematically reviewed the literature in non-English languages including Chinese, French, Bahasa Indonesia, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Turkish, Romanian, and Russian offering insights into similarities and differences and their implications for public diplomacy scholarship and practice. We presented our findings at a panel on this special issue at the 2024 ISA Annual Congress. The special issue will be published in the Journal of Public Diplomacy in 2024 June, and potentially as a book in 2025.