The Ohio State University at Newark


Ohio State Newark North Korea Expert Contributes to National Discussion

NEWARK, OH, Jan. 17, 2018 — At The Ohio State University at Newark, students discover world-class teaching minds passionate about connecting to other disciplines as they discover new ways to see the world. People like nationally recognized North Korea expert Mitchell Lerner, Ph.D., associate professor of history and director of Ohio State’s Institute for Korean Studies. Recognized by media powerhouses like “The Washington Post” for his insight on U.S. foreign policy, Lerner is a regular contributor to the national discussion. In countless different ways, the teaching minds at Ohio State Newark help people navigate an increasingly complex world.

Mitchell Lerner, recent interviews/articles:

C-SPAN Radio “LBJ tapes: USS Pueblo 50th Anniversary” (Jan. 20, 2018, 6 p.m.)

American Historical Association session “The North Korean Nuclear Crisis in History” (Jan. 7, 2018)

Guest columnist Cleveland.com “To change North Korea, choose soft powers instead” (Jan. 5, 2018)

Presentation at Colorado School of Mines “Insiders view of Korea” (Oct. 12, 2017)

Korea and the World podcast (Sept. 18, 2017)

The Ohio State University Department of History seminar“Nuclear North Korea: America’s Options” (Sept. 7, 2017)

Interviewed on WOSU's "All Sides" with Ann Fisher about the situation in North Korea.49:36. (Apr. 26, 2017)

“Washington Post” article “We won’t go to war with North Korea on purpose. But we might by accident.” (Aug. 24, 2017)

Ohio State Insights Politics and Policy “The U.S.’s North Korea Problem” (Aug. 2017)

“Washington Post” article “China can’t tame North Korea. The U.S. has to.” (July 5, 2017)

“Columbus Dispatch” interview “What can U.S. do to North Korea to avenge death of Otto Warmbier? (June 20, 2017)

Lerner’s research and teaching focus is on modern American diplomatic and political history during the Cold War, with an emphasis on United States-East Asian relations. He is the director of Ohio State’s Institute for Korean Studies, and Ohio State Newark’s LeFevre Fellows community service program.

His first book, “The Pueblo Incident: A Spy Ship and the Failure of American Foreign Policy,” won the 2002 John Lyman Book Award for the best work of U.S. Naval History, and was named by the American Library Association as one of fifty "historically significant works" that would not have been published after the passage of Executive Order 13233. It was also nominated for the Pulitzer and Bancroft Prizes.

He is also the editor of “Looking Back at LBJ,” a collection of essays about the Johnson Administration published in 2005, and “A Companion to the Presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson.” He has published articles about modern American politics and foreign policy in numerous anthologies and journals, including “Diplomatic History,” “Diplomacy & Statecraft,” “The Journal of East Asian Affairs,” “Presidential Studies Quarterly,” “Southwestern Historical Quarterly,” and the “Journal of Cold War Studies.” He is currently at work on a policy history of the Johnson Administration, as well as a broad study of U.S.-Korean relations during the Cold War.

Lerner was elected to the governing council of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations in 2008, and is on the advisory board of the North Korea International Documentation Project, directed by the Cold War International History Project at the Wilson Center for Scholars. He has also served as a Fellow at the University of Virginia's Miller Center for Public Affairs, and in 2005-06, he held the Mary Ball Washington Distinguished Fulbright Chair at University College-Dublin. He has received fellowships and grants from the Korea Foundation, the Lyndon Johnson Presidential Library, the Dwight Eisenhower Presidential Library, and the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, where he won the Kovler Fellowship in Foreign Intelligence in 2001. He has served as editor of Passport: The Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations Review and on the teaching committee for the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations. In 2005, he won the OSU Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching. Lerner received his Ph.D. from the University of Texas-Austin and his B.A. from Brandeis University.

The Ohio State University at Newark offers an academic environment that’s inclusive of diversity, challenging but supportive with world-renowned professors and access to Ohio State’s more than 200 majors. It’s where learning comes to life. Research, study abroad and service learning opportunities prepare students for their careers in ways they never expected.