October 04, 2023


Peter Ward

Peter Ward

Peter Ward is a senior researcher at Kookmin University, a writer and researcher focusing on the North Korean economy, and holds a Ph.D. from the University of Vienna.


North Korea’s largest-ever banknote signals changes underfoot in monetary system

50,000-won denomination appears to be result of state efforts to push enterprises away from using foreign currency

Peter WardPeter WardJune 22, 2022

How COVID-19 and drought shaped North Korea’s priorities at latest party plenum

Leadership signaled focus on agriculture and construction as it deals with effects of long-term trade shutdown

Peter WardPeter WardJune 13, 2022

Factor markets: Who really owns the land, labor and capital in North Korea?

Actual control and right to buy and sell are increasingly determined by access to funds, not by state fiat

Peter WardPeter WardJune 6, 2022

Why some North Koreans actually benefit from sanctions on their country

Measures targeting DPRK’s weapons programs can serve interests of security institutions, military and firms

Peter WardPeter WardMay 31, 2022

Why North Korea’s pharmacies are unequipped to confront COVID-19

Private market actors are necessary for the DPRK’s drug distribution system to function, but supplies are highly limited

Peter WardPeter WardMay 26, 2022

Russia faces North Korea-level sanctions, but can’t escape them like Pyongyang

Russia’s economy is far larger and more connected to the rest of the world than the DPRK’s

Peter WardPeter WardApril 26, 2022

Why urbanized, well-educated North Korea remains paradoxically poor

While the DPRK compares favorably with wealthier countries on some metrics, political decisions still hobble the economy

Peter WardPeter WardApril 11, 2022

Book review: How interest groups shape US policy toward North Korea

New book explores how foreign governments and military-industrial complex influence US foreign policy

Peter WardPeter WardApril 7, 2022

Why Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has a limited impact on North Korea’s economy

Subsidized trade and depressed demand likely insulate the DPRK economy from food and oil price shocks — but not forever

Peter WardPeter WardMarch 29, 2022

The unique ways that capital is allocated in North Korea

The DPRK relies on Soviet-style state-directed development, with regular households expected to make up the rest

Peter WardPeter WardFebruary 18, 2022
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