Growing up in Incheon, South Korea, I studied public administration at Korea University (Bachelor of Public Administration; Minor in Political Science, 2003) and Seoul National University (MPA, 2005). Throughout the years in Korea, I became fascinated with how people created public institutions and then were affected by their creations.

In 2007, I moved to the United States to begin a doctoral program at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, where I deepened my institutional perspective drawing on the literature of public administration and its related fields, and developed expertise in local government management, service delivery/contracting, and public budgeting (Ph.D. in Policy, Planning & Development with Public Management track, “Essays on Fiscal Outcomes of Cities in California,” 2013).

Since 2014, I have been producing peer-reviewed publications, while teaching core MPA courses on local government management, public budgeting, statistics, service contracting, and program evaluation at Boise State University, Idaho.

Furthermore, I have had excellent opportunities of community engagement through a number of consulting projects to help Idaho’s state and local policymakers. Through these experiences, I became interested in how to make people’s lives better with the help of institutional solutions.

I enjoy hiking in free time, because mountains and lakes are beautiful here. In cooler seasons, I like going to the musical theater for both classical and modern-day Broadway musicals, among which my favorite is Billy Elliot pursuing his dream despite social challenges and Les Misérables featuring an ordinary man who ascends to divinity with persistent practices of virtue.