Byunghwan Ben Son

Byunghwan Ben Son

Byunghwan Ben Son

Associate Professor

International & Comparative political economy, Exchange rates, Economic crisis, Democratization, Asian Politics

Byunghwan Son is an Associate Professor of the Global Affairs Program and Director of Asia-Pacific and Northeast Asian Studies. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from University of Missouri (Columbia). His research interests lie in the intersection of political behaviors (individual and collective) and economic conditions. His recent research topics include democratization, democratic support, public confidence in governments, international reserves, currency crises,  exchange rate regimes, Asian politics, and social science methodology. Before joining George Mason, he taught in College of Wooster (Ohio) and Korean Air Force Academy (South Korea). 

Personal Webpage

Selected Publications

2014. "Inequality and Democratic Support," Journal of Politics. 76-139-151. (with Jonanthan Krieckhaus, Nisha Bellinger, and Jason Wells). 

2015. "Economic Coercion and Currency Crises in Target Economies," Journal of Peace Research. 52: 448-462. (with Dursun Peksen) 

2016. "Policy Choices in Hard Times: the case of democratization and currency devaluation," International Political Science Review. 37: 453-469.

2016. "Are the Poor the Weak Link?: Economic Crisis, Income Level, and Democratic Support in South Korea." Journal of East Asian Studies. 16: 219-237.

2018. "Democratization and Currency Crises in Latin America," Journal of International Relations and Development. 21: 442-463. (with Jonathan Krieckhaus)

2018. "The Mysterious Overvaluation of KRW in the 1990s," The Pacific Review. 31(5): 573-597.

2019. "Political Parties and Foreign Direct Investment Inflows Among Developing Countries" Political Studies. 67: 712-731. (with Nisha Bellinger)

2020. "Democracy and Reserves" Foreign Policy Analysis. 16(3): 417-437.

2020. "Interpersonal Trust and Confidence in Labor Unions: the case of South Korea," Journal of East Asian Studies. Forthcoming. DOI:

2020. "Doi Moi and Vietnamese Threat Perception of Chinese Economic Growth," Japanese Journal of Political Science. Forthcoming. DOI:

2021. "Presidential Approval Ratings and Foreign Exchange Market: The Case of the Korean Won during the Park Government" Asian Survey. Forthcoming. DOI:

2021. "Security Threats and Investment: North Korean Threats and the South Korean Stock Market" Pacific Focus. Accepted for Publication. (with Chungshik Moon).



PhD. University of Missouri-Columbia, Political Science (2013)

M.A./B.A. Yonsei University (Seoul), Political Science