Accession Number:



North Korean Decisionmaking: Economic Opening, Conventional Deterrence Breakdown, and Nuclear Use

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Technical Report

Corporate Author:

RAND Corporation, Santa Monica Santa Monica United States

Report Date:


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Discerning the decisionmaking of Kim Jong-Un and the North Koreanregime on issues of peaceful engagement and warlike actions enduresas a mighty challenge for U.S. intelligence analysts and policymakers.In this report, we seek to inform analysis of Democratic PeoplesRepublic of Korea DPRK leadership decisionmaking. To do so, weuse three discussion papers that were written to facilitate discussion ofan interagency working group. The three papers are assembled here ina single report. The first discussion paper describes decisionmakingamong different authoritarian regimes, including North Korea, andthe opening up of those economies to outside engagement. The secondpaper outlines two different scenarios that might occur when conventionaldeterrence on the Korean Peninsula breaks down and the resultingdecisions that North Koreas leadership could face. The third paperassesses DPRK decisionmaking about nuclear weapon use. The reportconcludes with some observations, drawn from the issues covered inthese three discussion papers, about DPRK decisionmaking and stabilityon the Korean Peninsula.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Economics and Cost Analysis

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