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Dongwoo Kim joins the Department of Economics

July 28, 2019
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Dongwoo Kim will be joining the Department of Economics at Simon Fraser University this July as an assistant professor. Most recently, he was a teaching assistant at University College London in England, where he earned his master’s of science (2014), his master’s of research (2015) and his PhD (2019) all in economics.

Although living in London was a great cultural experience, Kim feels that Vancouver is an ideal place for his young family and his budding career to flourish.

“The Department of Economics at SFU is well-recognized among academic economists, and I love the collegial atmosphere here,” he says. “I didn’t hesitate to take the offer from SFU even though I was offered jobs at other good universities as well.”

Kim’s specialty is in microeconometrics, which uses statistical analysis of economic data to understand individual behaviours. This allows for a better understanding of the effect of economic policies—such as taxes, minimum wage, and EI—on the population. At SFU, he will be expanding on his current research in “partial identification,” which relies on a weaker set of assumptions in econometric models.

“My job is to push the boundaries of human knowledge,” Kim says. “It is intellectually inspiring and rewarding, even though my contribution is small.”

Born in Daejeon, in central South Korea, Kim worked as a research economist in the Bank of Korea in Seoul for four years before moving to London for his PhD. At UCL, he interacted with well-known international economists, and he looks forward to bringing the knowledge he gained to his role at SFU.

At UCL, Kim was awarded the Ricardo scholarship, a full scholarship seldom awarded to non-European students. UCL is known for high-quality teaching, and Kim twice received their Excellent in Teaching award.

On a more personal note, Kim misses his time on stage, playing in an amateur hard rock cover band in Korea. A waning interest in hard rock in Korea (can we blame K-pop?) and compulsory military service for the male band members prevented their rise to professional stardom. Korea may have lost a musician, but SFU has gained a promising young economist.