Presentation at Philips Exeter Academy

Managing Director Geoffrey will be making presentations in Boston in early November at Exeter and Harvard University in the Boston area. These will be off-the-record sessions. The Strange World of Pyongyang: Helping North Koreans Learn About Economics & Business and Learning How North Koreans Think Phillips Exeter Academy Assembly Talk 10.15am November 1, 2011

This will be a general introduction to what it is like doing fieldwork in North Korea and an attempt to dispel the common media trope of North Koreans as brainwashed unthinking automatons.

-------------------------------------------------- Assembly Speaker Gives Glimpse Inside North Korea

Some excerpts from coverage of the talk in Lion's Eye at Philips Exeter Academy:

"I want to focus on understanding how we look at North Korea. The main issue with North Korea is that it is a very poorly understood country. We still don't really know a lot about the country despite much having been written in the media."

With that opening, Geoffrey See – founder and managing director of Choson Exchange, a nonprofit focused on economics, business and legal training of young North Korean government officials – began his assembly talk. By drawing on his own experiences from multiple visits to Pyongyang over the last year, See was able to give PEA students a glimpse behind North Korea's shrouding curtain...

To close his talk, See left his audience with several questions: "If you believe North Korea is run by a single dictator and the country is not changing, is it possible to reach a negotiated solution to the nuclear crisis? On the other hand, if you believe North Korea is changing, that it is a more complex country, does that give you more options on how to effect positive change in the country?" See added by way of ending, "How we understand North Korea affects what kind of foreign policy solutions we put forth in trying to tackle issues such as human rights, economic development or the nuclear issue."