Core Faculty

Carol Benedict


Carol Benedict (Ph.D. Stanford, 1992; M.A. Stanford University, 1985; B.A. University of California at Santa Cruz, 1980) is the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Chair in the Edmund Walsh School of Foreign Service and the Department of History, Georgetown University. She teaches courses on the Republic of China (Taiwan), modern China, and global history. Her research focuses on the social and cultural history of nineteenth- and twentieth-century China with a particular focus on the social history of medicine and disease, women and gender history, and the history of Chinese consumer culture. Benedict’s publications include Bubonic Plague in Nineteenth-Century China (Stanford, 1996) and Golden-Silk Smoke: A History of Tobacco in China, 1550-2010 (University of California 2011). Golden-Silk Smoke was awarded the American Historical Association’s 2011 John K. Fairbank Prize in East Asian History. The book was also a finalist (one of two) for the 2013 Southeast Conference of the Association for Asian Studies book prize.

Professor Benedict served as Chair of the Georgetown Department of History from 2012 to 2016. In 2013, she received the Georgetown University Distinguished Achievement in Research Award and in 2005, she was a recipient of the Georgetown College Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Victor Cha

Professor, D.S. Song-Korea Foundation Chair in Asian Studies

Victor D. Cha (Ph.D. Columbia, 1994; MA Oxford, 1986; BA Columbia, 1983) holds the D.S. Song Chair in the Department of Government and School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He has been a member of the Georgetown faculty for over two decades, joining in 1995. In 2009, he was named as Senior Adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC. He left the White House in May 2007 after serving since 2004 as Director for Asian Affairs at the National Security Council (on public service leave from the University). At the White House, he was responsible primarily for Japan, the Korean peninsula, Australia/New Zealand and Pacific Island nation affairs. Dr. Cha was also the Deputy Head of Delegation for the United States at the Six Party Talks in Beijing, and received two Outstanding Service commendations during his tenure at the NSC. He is the author of five books: 1) Alignment Despite Antagonism: The United States-Korea-Japan Security Triangle (Stanford University Press) (winner of the 2000 Ohira Book Prize), 2) Nuclear North Korea: A Debate on Engagement Strategies (Columbia University Press, 2004 with Dave Kang), 3) Beyond the Final Score: The Politics of Sport in Asia(Columbia, 2009); 4) The Impossible State: North Korea, Past and Future (HarperCollins, 2012); and 5) Powerplay: Origins of the American Alliance System in Asia (Princeton University Press,2016). He has written articles on international relations and East Asia in journals including Foreign Affairs, International Security, Political Science Quarterly, Survival, International Studies Quarterly, and Asian Survey.

Dr. Cha is a former John M. Olin National Security Fellow at Harvard University, two-time Fulbright Scholar, and Hoover National Fellow, CISAC Fellow, and William J. Perry Fellow at Stanford University. He is currently a fellow in Human Freedom (non-resident) at the George W. Bush Institute in Dallas, Texas. Dr. Cha serves on 10 editorial boards of academic journals and is co-editor of the Contemporary Asia Book Series at Columbia University Press. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Fulbright Association. He has been the principal investigator on 21 major research grant projects, ranging between $40,000 and $1.6 million from private foundations and the U.S. government. He has testified before Congress numerous times on Asian security issues. In 2018, he joined NBC and MSNBC as a contributor. Prior to joining NBC, he had been a guest analyst for various media including CNN, ABC, CBS, The Colbert Report, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, Fox News, PBS, HuffPostWall Street Journal, CNBC, BBC, and National Public Radio. His op-eds have appeared in the Washington Post, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Bloomberg, USA Today, Foreign Policy, Japan Times, FEER, and Financial Times. He works as an independent consultant helping clients in sectors ranging from business and finance to entertainment.

Michael Green

Professor, Chair in Modern and Contemporary Japanese Politics and Foreign Policy

Michael Green (Ph.D. Johns Hopkins SAIS, 1994; M.A. Johns Hopkins SAIS, 1987; B.A. Kenyon College, 1983) is Director of Asian Studies and Chair in Modern and Contemporary Japanese Politics and Foreign Policy at the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He is also senior vice president for Asia and Japan Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). He served on the staff of the National Security Council (NSC) from 2001 through 2005, first as director for Asian affairs with responsibility for Japan, Korea, Australia, and New Zealand, and then as special assistant to the president for national security affairs and senior director for Asia, with responsibility for East Asia and South Asia. Before joining the NSC staff, he was a senior fellow for East Asian security at the Council on Foreign Relations, director of the Edwin O. Reischauer Center and the Foreign Policy Institute and assistant professor at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University, research staff member at the Institute for Defense Analyses, and senior adviser on Asia in the Office of the Secretary of Defense. He also worked in Japan on the staff of a member of the National Diet.

His current research and writing is focused on Asian regional architecture, Japanese politics, U.S. foreign policy history, the Korean peninsula, Tibet, Burma, and U.S.-India relations. His most recent book is By More than Providence: Grand Strategy and American Power in the Asia Pacific since 1783 (Columbia University Press, 2017). Dr. Green is also a nonresident fellow at the Lowy Institute in Sydney, Australia, a distinguished scholar at the Asia Pacific Institute in Tokyo, and professor by special appointment at Sophia University in Tokyo. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Aspen Strategy Group, the America Australia Leadership Dialogue, the advisory boards of Radio Free Asia and the Center for a New American Security, and the editorial boards of the Washington Quarterly and the Journal of Unification Studies in Korea. He also serves as a trustee at the Asia Foundation, senior adviser at the Asia Group, and associate of the U.S. Intelligence Community.

Diana Kim

Assistant Professor
Diana Kim (Ph.D. University of Chicago, 2013; B.A. Korea University) is an Assistant Professor in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. Her research and teaching focuses on the transnational politics and history of markets across Southeast and East Asia, with particular interest in the regulation of vice, illicit economies, theories of crime and disorder, state formation, and legacies of Empire and colonialism. Her first book, entitled Empires of Vice, develops a comparative study of the rise of opium prohibition in British Burma, Malaya, and French Indochina since the late 19th century. Diana has worked as a consultant for the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and her scholarship has been awarded prizes from the American Bar Foundation and the Social Science History Association.

Christine Kim

Visiting Assistant Professor

Christine Kim (Ph.D. Harvard; MIA Columbia; B.A. University of Virginia) is an Associate Professor of Teaching in the School of Foreign Service of Georgetown University. A historian by training, she teaches courses on modern Korea and East Asia at both the undergraduate and graduate levels; topics include comparative colonialisms, twentieth century conflicts, political symbolism, and film. Her research and writing focus on national identity, material culture, and political movements. The King Is Dead (forthcoming) explores the ways that colonization and modernization influenced Korean polity and identity during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. She is also engaged in a study examining cultural heritage and arts management in Korea in the twentieth century. Kim is the recipient of numerous fellowships, including ones from the Department of Education (Fulbright-Hays), the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Korea Foundation, the Academy of Korean Studies, and the East-West Center.

Joanna Lewis

Associate Professor
Joanna Lewis (Ph.D. University of California-Berkeley; A.B. Duke University) is associate professor of Science, Technology and International Affairs at Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service and faculty affiliate in the China Energy Group at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. She is also a Lead Author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report and an adviser to multiple foundations, governmental and non-governmental organizations working on energy and climate issues in China. Dr. Lewis is currently leading a National Science Foundation-funded project on International Partnerships and Technological Leapfrogging in China’s Clean Energy Sector. She also leads the Georgetown US-China Climate Research Dialogue as part of the new Georgetown Initiative for US-China Cooperation on Global Issues. Dr. Lewis has conducted research in China on energy technology and innovation and climate change policy for over 15 years. Her recent book, Green Innovation in China was awarded the 2014 Harold and Margaret Sprout Award by the International Studies Association. Her research has appeared in journals such as Science, Energy Policy, Global Environmental Politics, and Nature Energy, as well as in numerous edited volumes on environmental policy and on contemporary Chinese politics. Dr. Lewis is the editor of a new book series with Oxford University Press, Studies in Comparative Energy and Environmental Politics. Previously, Dr. Lewis was a Senior International Fellow at the Pew Center on Global Climate Change and a researcher in the China Energy Group at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. She served as the technical director for the Asia Society’s Initiative for U.S.-China Cooperation on Energy and Climate, and has also worked at the White House Council on Environmental Quality, the National Wildlife Federation and the Environmental Defense Fund. She has been a visiting scholar at Tsinghua University, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the East-West Center.

Kristen Looney

Assistant Professor

Kristen Looney (Ph.D Harvard, 2012; B.A. Wellesley College) is an assistant professor of Asian Studies and Government at Georgetown University, where she teaches courses on Chinese politics. Trained as a comparative political scientist, she is completing a book manuscript on the politics of rural development in East Asia, focusing on state-led modernization campaigns in China (1980s-2000s), Taiwan (1950s-1970s) and South Korea (1950s-1970s). She is also interested in rural governance and party building under authoritarianism. Dr. Looney’s research has been supported by the Chiang Ching-Kuo Foundation, the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship Program, the Fulbright-Hays Program, the Blakemore Foundation, the Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowships Program, and the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard. She is fluent in Chinese and has some training in Korean language as well.

Evan Medeiros

Professor of Practice, Penner Family Chair in Asian Studies; Cling Family Distinguished Fellow in U.S.-China Studies

Evan S. Medeiros (Ph.D. London School of Economics and Political Science; M.Phil University of Cambridge; M.A. University of London; B.A. Bates College) is the Penner Family Chair in Asia Studies in the School of Foreign Service and the Cling Family Distinguished Fellow in U.S.-China Studies. His research and teaching focuses on the international politics of East Asia, U.S.-China relations and China’s foreign and national security policies. He has published several books and articles and regularly provides advice to global corporations and commentary to the international media.

Dr. Medeiros’ expertise is a unique blend of research expertise and practical experience. He previously served for six years on the staff of the National Security Council as Director for China, Taiwan and Mongolia – and then as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Asia. In the latter role, Dr. Medeiros served as President Obama’s top advisor on the Asia-Pacific and was responsible for coordinating U.S. policy toward the Asia-Pacific across the areas of diplomacy, defense policy, economic policy, and intelligence. He was actively involved in all aspects U.S.-China relations for six years, including several U.S.-China summits.

In recent years, Dr. Medeiros advised multinational companies on Asia in his role as Managing Director for Asia-Pacific at Eurasia Group, the global political risk consultancy. Prior to joining the White House, Dr. Medeiros also worked for seven years as a senior political scientist at the RAND Corporation. From 2007-2008, he also served as policy advisor to Secretary Hank Paulson working on the U.S.-China Strategic Economic Dialogue at the Treasury Department.

James Millward

James A. Millward (Ph.D. Stanford University; M.A. University of London; B.A. Harvard University) is Professor of Inter-societal History at the Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University, teaching Chinese, Central Asian and world history. He is also an affiliated professor in the Máster Oficial en Estudios de Asia Oriental at the University of Granada, Spain. His specialties include Qing empire; the silk road; Eurasian lutes and music in history; and historical and contemporary Xinjiang. He follows and comments on current issues regarding the Uyghurs and PRC ethnicity policy.  Millward has served on the boards of the Association for Asian Studies (China and Inner Asia Council) and the Central Eurasian Studies Society, and was president of the Central Eurasian Studies Society in 2010. He edits the ”Silk Roads” series for University of Chicago Press. His publications include The Silk Road: A Very Short Introduction (2013), Eurasian Crossroads: a History of Xinjiang (2007), New Qing Imperial History: the Making of Inner Asian Empire at Qing Chengde (2004), and Beyond the Pass: Economy, Ethnicity and Empire in Qing Central Asia (1998). His articles and op-eds on contemporary China appear in The New York TimesThe Los Angeles Review of BooksThe New York Review of Books and other media.

Irfan Nooruddin

Professor, Al Thani Chair in Indian Politics; Director, Georgetown University India Initiative; SFS Faculty Chair

Irfan Nooruddin (Ph.D. University of Michigan; B.A. Ohio Wesleyan University) is the Hamad bin Khalifa Professor of Indian Politics and the Faculty Chair of the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown. He directs the Georgetown University India Initiative, a university-wide initiative that advances research and teaching around India and its role in world affairs and creates a platform for high-level dialogue among American and Indian leaders from government, business, civil society, and the academy.

He is the author of Elections in Hard Times: Building Stronger Democracies in the 21st Century and (Cambridge, 2016) and Coalition Politics and Economic Development: Credibility and the Strength of Weak Governments (Cambridge, 2011). Dr. Nooruddin specializes in the study of comparative economic development and policymaking, democratization and democratic institutions, and international institutions. He has been a Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC, and is a Team Member with Lokniti: Programme on Comparative Democracy at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, New Delhi. More information is available at