Korea-United States Journalists Exchange

American journalists visit the Wolsung Nuclear Power Generation plant in South Korea, 2011

The Korea-United States Journalists Exchange, launched by the East-West Center in 2005, is co-sponsored by the East-West Center, Korea Press Foundation and Pacific Century Institute to increase public understanding of the two countries and their relationship. The bilingual program offers opportunities for six to eight Korean journalists to visit the United States and for six to eight United States journalists to visit Korea. Following these study tours, all Korean and American participants meet at the East-West Center in Honolulu to share their experiences and new perspectives and to exchange opinions on how media coverage of each country can be improved. A total of nearly 160 journalists, including North Korean defector media, have participated in this program, and Americans have traveled inside North Korea on two different programs. The Henry Luce Foundation was also an early supporter of this Exchange. 

2017 Korea-United States Journalists Exchange

The 2017 Korea-US Journalist Exchange took place at a time of deep interest in US-South Korea relations and grave concerns about North Korea’s missile tests and threatening language. Both new governments have also proposed policy shifts that have caused much anxiety in each other’s capitals. The six American journalists who traveled in South Korea had extraordinary access to high-level officials in the new government of President Moon Jae-in. North Korea defector Joo Seong-ha, columnist for Dongha Ilbo newspaper, provided illuminating insights into life today in North Korea; and media star Sohn Suk-hee, anchor and president of JTBC’s new reporting division, provided a vivid and dramatic account of how he led his reporting team to break stories that ultimately led to the Candlelight Revolution that brought down the Park Geun-hye government. In Washington, DC the six Korean journalists learned firsthand at the State Department, Pentagon and think tanks about how North Korea and related security issues as well as trade are priorities in the US capitol and the US relationship with South Korea. They also heard from US journalists about challenges faced by American media in covering the new administration.


"Bridging the Gaps in Understanding between the United States and South Korea: The Future of the US-Korea Alliance"


July 16 – 24, 2017

Korean Destinations:

Seoul, Gwangju, and Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea

US Destinations:

Washington, D.C. and Honolulu, Hawaii

All participants will meet at the East-West Center in Honolulu for a one-day concluding dialogue.


The 2017 Korea-US Journalists Exchange was funded by the East West Center, Korea Press Foundation, and Pacific Century Institute.

Sponsors will cover:

  • All international and domestic airfares
  • Ground transportation and airport transfers
  • Lodging in each of the study-tour destinations
  • Program-related meals
  • Cultural activities and networking opportunities
  • Interpretation services during the study tour

The 2017 Korea-United States Journalists Exchange participants were:

Korean Fellows

  • Mr. Sehun Chang, The Political Desk Assistant Manager, The Seoul Shinmun, Seoul
  • Mr. Hansik Jang, News & Sports Division Integrated Newsroom TV & Radio News Executive Director, KBS (Korean Broadcasting System), Seoul
  • Mr. Yoonsub Jung, Political Desk Assistant Editor, Yonhap News Agency, Seoul
  • Mr. Chanho Kang, Editorial Board Editorial Writer, The Joongang Daily, Seoul
  • Mr. Jaejoong Kim, Opinion Desk Manager, The Kyunghyang Shinmun, Seoul
  • Mr. Jongwoo Kim, Politics Department Reporter, The Busan Ilbo, Busan

U.S. Fellows

  • Ms. Amy Brittain, Investigative Reporter, The Washington Post, Washington, DC
  • Mr. Benjamin Gottlieb, Reporter/Producer, KCRW Public Radio (NPR for Southern California), Santa Monica, California
  • Mr. Stuart Leavenworth, National Correspondent, McClatchy Newspaper DC Bureau, Washington, DC
  • Mr. Jim Michaels, National Security Writer, USA Today, Washington Bureau, Washington, DC
  • Ms. Hilary Powell, Reporter, WSBT-TV (CBS-affiliate), Mishawaka, Indiana
  • Ms. Margy Slattery, Deputy Editor, Politico Magazine, Rosslyn, Virginia


2016 Korea-United States Journalists Exchange

The 10th Korea-United States Journalists Exchange, which took place July 17–25, 2016, marked the continued importance of the Korea-US relationship. With a focus on “Bridging the Gaps in Understanding between the United States and South Korea,” the July program looked at current issues related to US-Korea relations, including the strategic Korea-US military alliance, bilateral trade, and continued North Korea threats. Korean journalists were in Cleveland, Ohio during the Republican convention for a firsthand look at the US presidential nomination process and American politics. US journalists learned about South Korea and US policies on how to deal with North Korea, Korea’s cutting-edge information technology and social media as well as travel the short distance from Seoul to see the Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea.

The program took six Korean journalists to the United States and six US journalists to South Korea met with government and business leaders, academics, non-governmental organizations, media, and other members of the community.  Following these study tours, all of the journalists will meet for a final dialogue at the East-West Center in Honolulu to report on their travel experiences and to exchange opinions on how media coverage of US-Korea issues can be improved.


"Bridging the Gaps in Understanding between the United States and South Korea"


July 17 – 25, 2016

Korean Destinations:

Seoul, Busan, and Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea

US Destinations:

Washington, D.C. and Cleveland, Ohio


All participants met at the East-West Center in Honolulu for a one-day concluding program.

The 2016 Korea-United States Journalists Exchange participants were:

The Korean Fellows:

  • Mr. Jinwoo HWANG, Deputy Reporter, Politics and Foreign Affairs, Korean Broadcasting System (KBS), Seoul
  • Mr. Jungwoo KIM, Political News Desk, TV Chosun/Chosun Ilbo, Seoul
  • Mr. Dae Jong KIM, International News Desk, Munhwa Daily Newspaper, Seoul
  • Mr. Sungjin KIM, Staff Reporter, Political Desk, Channel A/Dong A Ilbo, Seoul
  • Mr. Seungkeun KWON, International Desk, Assistant Director, NEWSIS, Seoul
  • Mr. Ji Yeong RYU, Staff, The Department of Foreign Affairs, The Seoul Daily, Seoul

The US Fellows:

  • Mr. Robert BYERS, Co-Editor, Charleston Gazette-Mail, Charleston, West Virginia
  • Mr. Frank DENTON, Editor, The Florida Times-Union and, and Vice President for Journalism, Morris Publishing Group, Jacksonville, Florida
  • Mr. Drew HARWELL, Staff Writer, Washington Post, Washington, DC
  • Ms. Susan HUANG, Producer, CNN International, Atlanta, Georgia
  • Mr. Ted LAND, Multimedia Journalist, King 5 News (NBC affiliate), Seattle, Washington
  • Mr. Mitchell LANDSBERG, Deputy Foreign and National Editor, Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles, California

Contact Information

Marilyn Li
Program Coordinator, East-West Seminars
East-West Center
1601 East-West Road
Honolulu, HI  96848, USA
Phone: 808-944-7682; Fax: 808-944-7600

You can also check the website for more program information and for a list of all East-West Center journalism fellowships and exchanges at