About Us

New Focus is distinctive in the combination of the following:

    • it offers North Korea insights, reporting and analysis rooted in an empirical understanding of the country’s workings;
    • and holds access potential into the economic and power nexus of North Korea.

This is the only independent platform editorially shaped by and informed through vetted North Korean perspectives – including those from the highest levels of its socio-political system – with networks in the border regions, in Pyongyang itself and among North Korean officials who serve abroad.

Launched in 2011, New Focus has no political or governmental affiliation and was self-funded from the very start.

Our stated aim is to prepare the ground for an authentically informed discourse on North Korea: its people not only have no free press, no freedom of speech, nor access to international media; many outside continue to interpret and report about North Korea within a framework of speculative or false assumptions, while the current DPRK leadership system enforces a disciplined doublespeak and tactical façades in order to obscure its working rationale from those born and bred outside of it.

We believe that a shared understanding of North Korea rooted in, shaped by and vetted through those with relevant empirical understanding, must begin to serve as the basis for commentary or proposals regarding the country – now or in its future.

editor@newfocusintl.com / admin@newfocusintl.com


Editorial – Korean

Jang Jin-sung is founder and publisher.

Jang is a former counterintelligence official and poet laureate under North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il. Post-exile, he worked as a senior research fellow at the Institute for National Security Strategy in Seoul, but left his post to set up in 2011 with his severance pay the first independent platform run by, through and for the North Korean people – New Focus.

His memoir, Dear Leader, was published by Random House (UK/Worldwide) and Simon & Schuster (US/Canada) in May 2014.

Hyeon Seong-il / Ko Young-hwan / Kim Dong-soo / Kim In-tae / Choe Kun-chol / Choe Ju-hwal are among our disclosed advisors.

They are former high-level officials of the DPRK whose combined first-hand experience spans North Korea’s core dynastic businesses, political, economic and military institutions, foreign policy, and its relations with African, Asian and European countries.

Our reporters are Shin Jun-shik and Park Ju-hee.

Editorial – English

Shirley Lee launched New Focus International, New Focus’s English website, in 2012. Trained as a Classicist and Persianist, she translated Jang’s memoir. She is working on a book of non-fiction about North Korea.

Yongmin Lee, Sinae Hong, Sharon Kim, Max Ernst, and Jumin Kim volunteer with translations.

All material on this website is © New Focus International and may only be used with acknowledgement.

Comments that are abusive will be deleted at the editor’s discretion.