ICT Development in North Korea: Changes and Challenges

Heejin Lee, Jaeho Hwang


Conditions of ICT development in North Korea are among the least known in the world. This paper relies on interviews, documentary material, and other sources to analyze the potentials of and constraints on North Korea's ICT development. We find substantial interest in ICT diffusion at high levels in the government, which has consistently promoted economically focused ICT programs and projects, while severely constraining political uses of ICT. While North Korea can gain substantial benefits from its proximity to South Korea, nonetheless the future of ICT development in North Korea depends on geopolitical circumstances surrounding the Korean Peninsula.


Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs); North Korea; Development; Geopolitical Circumstances

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