On September 12, 2023, the Weatherhead East Asian Institute hosted a student dialogue featuring Ambassador and Consul General of Japan in New York Mikio Mori and Consul General of the Republic of Korea in New York Kim Euy Whan. In attendance were 10 students from across Columbia University, including the School of International and Public Affairs, the School of General Studies, and Columbia Business School. This initiative complemented recent positive developments in Japan-Korea relations and served as a meaningful precursor to high-level week at the United Nations General Assembly.
The students engaged in a dialogue covering topics of identity, security, diplomacy, soft power, and environmental cooperation. They also highlighted how their dual roles as youth and members of the diaspora have positively influenced their perspectives on each other's countries, representing significant progress from past generations. The students stressed the importance of maintaining open channels of communication, transparency, and the effective use of mass media, popular culture, and educational initiatives to enhance mutual understanding and cooperation between the peoples of both nations.
The Consuls General noted that this dialogue constituted one part of a series of joint projects to promote mutual understanding and address common social issues faced by their respective communities, such as hate crimes in the US against people of Asian descent, aging populations, and gender inequality. They thanked the students for their input and expressed hope that their insights would resonate across different levels of diplomacy.