© Korea Chair – Vrije Universiteit Brussel – 2018


KF-VUB Korea Chair Holder


Dr Ramon Pacheco Pardo is KF-VUB Korea Chair at the Centre for Security, Diplomacy and Strategy (CSDS) of the VUB Brussels School of Governance.

He is also Professor of International Relations at King’s College London. He is an Adjunct Fellow (Non-Resident) with the Korea Chair at CSIS, Non-Resident Fellow with Sejong Institute, and Committee Member at CSCAP EU. Prof. Pacheco Pardo has held visiting positions at Korea University, the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, and Melbourne University.

His publications include the books Shrimp to Whale: South Korea from the Forgotten War to K-Pop (Hurst and Oxford University Press, 2022) and North Korea-US Relations from Kim Jong Il to Kim Jong Un (Routledge, 2019). Prof Pacheco Pardo has been editor of Millennium: Journal of International Studies and currently sits in the editorial boards of East Asia: An International Quarterly, EU-China Observer and Global Studies Journal. He has participated in track 1.5 and 2 dialogues with South Korea, North Korea, China, and Japan. Prof Pacheco Pardo has testified before the European Parliament and advised the OECD, the European External Action Service, the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the United Kingdom’s Cabinet and Foreign & Commonwealth offices. He is a frequent media commentator on North East Asian affairs and EU-East Asia relations.



KF-VUB Korea Chair Senior Researcher

Dr Tongfi Kim is a KF-VUB Korea Chair Senior Researcher at the Centre for Security, Diplomacy and Strategy (CSDS) and Assistant Professor of International Affairs  of the VUB Brussels School of Governance.

He received his Ph.D. in political science from Ohio State University and previously worked at Purdue University, Griffith University, and Peace Research Institute Frankfurt. His research centers on security studies and the international relations of East Asia.

He is the author of The Supply Side of Security: A Market Theory of Military Alliances (Stanford University Press, 2016). In addition, he has published on topics such as military entanglement, U.S.-South Korea alliance, U.S.-Japan alliance, maritime disputes, the role of leaders in intra-alliance bargaining, nuclear non-proliferation, middle-powers, China’s rise, and political effects of demographics.



CSDS Senior Associate Researcher

Linde Desmaele is a Senior Associate Researcher at the Centre for Security, Diplomacy and Strategy (CSDS) at the Brussels School of Governance (BSoG-VUB). She is the recipient of a Belgian-American Educational Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship in support of her research at the Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies (SIWPS) at Columbia University. She is currently based at Columbia University as a visiting scholar.

Linde’s research focuses on American grand strategy, US-Europe relations, neoclassical realism and the Korean Peninsula. In her PhD, she focused on the evolution of the role of Europe in American grand strategy as Washington rebalances to the Indo-Pacific region. Her research has appeared in European Security, International Studies Review and Strategic Studies Quarterly.

Previously, Linde was a visiting scholar at SIWPS (Spring 2020) and the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University (Fall of 2018). She received her PhD in 2021 from the BSoG-VUB. She holds an M.A. from Seoul National University’s Graduate School of International Studies (South Korea), and an MA from KU Leuven (Belgium).



CSDS Project Officer

Paula Cantero is a Project Officer at the Centre for Security, Diplomacy and Strategy (CSDS) of the VUB Brussels School of Governance. Among other projects, she supports the KF-VUB Korea Chair with daily operations. Paula previously worked at the European External Action Service, European Delegation to the Republic for Korea, in the Political Section. 

Paula obtained a M.A. in International Relations from Yonsei Graduate School of International Studies and a B.A. in Japanese Studies from Ghent University. From 2013 to 2017, she lived in South Korea where she completed a Korean language training as part the KGSP scholarship programme.



KF-VUB Korea Chair PhD Researcher


Maximilian Ernst is a PhD researcher at the Brussels School of Governance. His research focuses on Asia-Pacific security, in particular Chinese foreign policy towards regional states, including South Korea. He received his B.A from the Johannes-Gutenberg University Mainz and his M.A. from Yonsei University. He previously worked as Junior Political Affairs Officer at the EU Delegation to the Republic of Korea in Seoul and as Consultant for KOTRA in Hamburg, Germany. In 2020, Maximilian completed a transatlantic fellowship with AICGS at Johns Hopkins University. In 2021, Maximilian was an NCAFP emerging leader on Korean Peninsula Security. Since April 2022, he assumes the position of a social scientist at the Cyber and Information Domain Service Command (KdoCIR) of the German Armed Forces in Bonn.



KF-VUB Korea Chair Visiting Fellow

Hyewon Park is a Visiting Fellow for the KF-VUB Korea Chair at the Centre for Security, Diplomacy and Strategy (CSDS) of the Brussels School of Governance. Ms. Park is a government officer from the Ministry of Education (MOE) of the Republic of Korea. She has worked as Director of a Social Policy Analysis team and other divisions in MOE for 17 years. She studied Administration and Policy at the Seoul National University Graduate School of Public Administration in South Korea. 

Her subject of research is “Making an Inclusive Education Safety Net and Strategies for Strengthening Public Responsibility for Education”. She is aiming to analyse education equality and design policies to promote social integration and address social polarisation.



KF-VUB Korea Chair PhD Researcher

Jihye Kang is a PhD researcher at KF-VUB Korea Chair at the Centre for Security, Diplomacy and Strategy (CSDS) of the Brussels School of Governance. 

Jihye obtained a M.A in European Affairs from Sciences-Po Paris after graduating from Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul. Since 2015, she has been working for the Korean Mission to the EU as an analyst. 

Jihye’s doctoral research focuses on Korea-EU relations on multiple levels, including an assessment of economic relations, security affairs, and cooperation in other sectors such as environment and digital policy.

Former Members



Visiting Fellow

Young-in Lee joined the KF-VUB Korea Chair as a Visiting Fellow from October 2019 to October 2021. She conducted research on the cultural policy of the EU. Young-in is an International Relations Official of the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA), which is part of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Korea. She joined MMCA in 2011, and has been in charge of international project initiatives and cooperation with institutions abroad. Previously, she worked as Managing Editor at the National Museum of Korea and as Head of Program Team at the Busan International Film Festival.

Young-in obtained a M.A. in Critical Studies from the School of Cinema-Television of the University of Southern California. She is currently a PhD candidate in International Relations at the Graduate School of International and Area Studies of Hankuk University of Foreign Studies.



Visiting Fellow

Young-hun Kim joined the KF-VUB Korea Chair as a Visiting Fellow from August 2018 to July 2020. His research focused on ‘A Case Study on the Integration of the EU for the economic unification of North and South Korea’. He is currently working at the South Korean Ministry of Unification.



Visiting Fellow

Sung Kyoo Ahn joined the KF-VUB Korea Chair from January to December 2020 as a Visiting Fellow conducting research on NATO with a focus on its relations with Russia, the US and China. He has obtained a PhD degree from Sungkyunkwan University and wrote a dissertation on Russia’s offensive military posture during the post-cold war period.