Emanuel Pastreich serves as the president of the Asia Institute (asia-institute.org), a think tank that builds bridges between individuals in Asia and around the world to respond to the greatest challenges of our time: climate change, the impact of technological change on human society, the rapidly shifting nature of international relations and the spread of a culture of anti-intellectualism. He is also independent candidate for President of the United States and has attracted tremendous attention globally for his book “I shall Fear No Evil” (September, 2020) which is based on the campaign speeches he delivered after declaring his candidacy in February, 2020.
The Asia Institute has offices in Washington D.C., Seoul (Republic of Korea), Hanoi (Vietnam) and Tokyo (Japan).
Pastreich has written articles about the environment, technology, globalization, international relations and business in Asia for such journals as Japan Focus, Foreign Policy in Focus & the Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies and Global Asia. He writes frequently on East Asian politics, culture and international relations for the Korea Times, Foreign Policy in Focus and for his blog, circlesandsquares.asia. He writes in Chinese primarily for Duowei and Guanchazhe, in Japanese for Huffington Post Japan and in Korean for Pressian, JoongAng Ilbo and “The Tomorrow.”
Pastreich has published four books in English: The Novels of Park Jiwon: Translation of Overlook Worlds (Seoul National University Press, 2011) , The Observable Mundane: Vernacular Chinese and the Emergence of a Discourse on Popular Narrative in Edo Japan (Seoul National University Press, 2012)), Selected Publications of the Asia Institute (Asia Institute Press, 2014) and Earth Management: A Dialogue on Ancient Korean Wisdom and Its Lessons for a New Earth (Best Life Media, 2016).
He has published five books in Korean:
Jigugyeongyoung Hongik e seo dap eul chatda [Earth Management: Finding the answer in the Hongik tradition] ( Hanmunhwa, 2016); Insaeng eun sokudo anira banghyang ida: Habodeu baksa eui hanguk pyoryugi [Life is a Matter of Direction, Not of Speed: Records of a Robinson Crusoe in Korea] (21st Century Books, 2016); Hangukin man moreuneun tareun daehanminguk; habeodeudae baksa ga bon hanguk ui ganeungseong [A Different Republic of Korea of which only Koreans are ignorant: A Harvard Ph.D.’s views on Korea’s potential] (21st Century Books, 2013); Segye seokhak hanguk mirae reul mal hada [Scholars of the World Speak Out About Korea’s Future]. Dasan Books, 2012: Hangukin man morratteon deo keun daehanminguk [A Korea Greater than Koreans imagined Possible] (Redwood Books, 2017).
Pastreich’s book Hangukin man moreuneun tareun daehanminguk; was recognized by President Park Geun-hye as her favorite book and later designated as a national security book by the Ministry of Defense. His book Hangukin man morratteon deo keun daehanminguk was designated by the Ministry of Education as a Sejong Book for special recognition by public libraries.
Pastreich has published two books in Chinese: Kuahai qiuzhen: Hafo boshi lun zhongmei weilai （跨海求真： 哈佛大学博士论中美未来） [Searching for the Truth on Both Sides of the Ocean] (Milky Way Publishers, Hong Kong, 2016) and Weilaizhongguo: Guanyu renlei yu diqiu mingyun 未来中国：关于人类与地球命运 [Future China: Concerning the fate of humanity and the Earth] (Xiandai wenhua Publishers, Hong Kong). He has published one book in Japanese, Bukiyo saraba, chikyuondanka to kenpokyujo [A farewell to arms: the crisis of global warming and the peace constitution] (Toho Publishers).
Pastreich has served as a consultant for government organizations, local government, NGOs, businesses and the media in Korea, but also in Japan and the United States.
Pastreich started his work in international relations as Director of the policy think tank KORUS House (2005-2007) at the Korean Embassy in Washington D.C. in 2005. The seminar series that he ran at the Korean Embassy became a central location for the discussion of policy related to Northeast Asia for two years.
He also served as the editor-in-chief of the official online newspaper produced by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs “Dynamic Korea.” Under Pastreich’s leadership, Dynamic Korea expanded to be a critical source of objective analysis on contemporary issues in Korea, and across Asia, to a degree rare for a government publication.
Pastreich was appointed as advisor to Lee Wan-goo, the governor of Chungnam Province in the Republic of Korea in 2007 where he worked on international affairs with local government. He also did similar consulting work for Daejeon City, Gwangju City and Seoul.
He focused primarily on science and technology from 2009, as adviser to t he president of Daedeok Innopolis, Korea’s premier technology cluster located around Korea’s main science university KAIST.
He wrote extensively on science policy and his research projects together with the Korea Institute for Bioscience and Biotechnology, the Korea Institute for Nuclear Safety, the Korea Institute for Geoscience and Materials, the Korea Research Institute for Standards and Science and Seoul National University. established him as a major figure in science policy.
He was co-founder with Professor Yang Jiwon of KAIST of the Daejeon Environment Forum, a regular meeting of experts in the environmental sciences in the Daedeok Cluster with officials of Daejeon City and other citizens groups for discussions about making the city more sustainable. He continues to work on environment and climate change at the Asia Institute today.
Pastreich started his career as an assistant professor of Japanese literature at the University of Illinois (1998-2005). He also served as an associate professor at Kyunghee University (2011-2018). He has taught at Harvard University, George Washington University, and the Korean Institute of Foreign Affairs and National Security.
Pastreich received a B.A. in Chinese literature from Yale University (1987), a Master’s Degree in comparative culture from the University of Tokyo (1992) and a Ph.D. in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University (1997). He studied abroad at National Taiwan University (1984-85) and Korea University (1998).
He also serves as visiting scholar at the Korean Economic Institute, as visiting scholar at the Center for Korean Studies at George Washington University, as associate at the Council on East Asian Studies at Yale University, and as a member of the academic council at CCG (Center for China and Globalization) in Beijing.
He is fluent in English, Chinese, Japanese, French and Korean.