January 18, 2022


Ruediger Frank

Dr. Ruediger Frank is professor of East Asian Economy and Society at the University of Vienna, where he heads the Department of East Asian Studies. He was born and raised in socialist East Germany and lived for five years in the Soviet Union, experienced German Unification first hand as a 21-year-old, and then spent one semester as a language student at Kim-Il-Sung University in Pyongyang in 1991/1992. He holds an MA in Korean Studies and International Relations, and a Ph.D. in Economics. On the basis of these skills and experiences, he has written extensively on various topics related to North Korea, including economic history during the 1950s, the connections between ideology and economic reform after the 1990s famine, the transformation of state-socialism, tourism and trade, the political economy of unification and many more. He has been working in various Korea-related councils of the World Economic Forum since 2011-2021 and was named one of the 50 most influential German economists by the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in 2012. He tweets as @RFrankVienna.


Not monolithic: The need to better understand North Korea’s internal dynamics

Designing effective DPRK policies requires ditching narrative of ‘one heart and mind’ and recognizing diverse groups

Ruediger FrankRuediger FrankJanuary 7, 2022