Reconciliation encompasses truth-telling, sharing of historical narratives, or dialogue to transform relations among groups affected by conflict and rebuild trust between the state and citizens so that former enemies can envision and realize a shared future. USIP supports research to evaluate and better understand the practices of reconciliation used around the world and their impact.

Featured   Publications

Japan, South Korea Must Address Mounting ‘Debt’ of Historical Atrocities

Japan, South Korea Must Address Mounting ‘Debt’ of Historical Atrocities

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

By: Tom Phuong Le

Few issues between Japan and South Korea draw as much attention and political resources while producing such ephemeral results as historical reconciliation. In two years, the countries will reach milestones for major agreements, such as the 10th anniversary of the 2015 “comfort women” agreement and the 60th anniversary of the Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and South Korea. Between these two landmark deals are several official Japanese apologies, government speeches acknowledging Japan’s colonial past, visits by Japanese dignitaries to Korean memorial sites, a public-private reparations program, government-level “friendship” initiatives and civil society efforts to grapple with so-called history issues.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Reconciliation

Beyond the Courts: History-Related Lawsuits and South Korea-Japan Relations

Beyond the Courts: History-Related Lawsuits and South Korea-Japan Relations

Thursday, January 26, 2023

By: Celeste L. Arrington

While the relationship between South Korea and Japan is fraught with a number of historical and territorial disputes, the current cycle of tensions focuses our attention on lawsuits related to the colonial era. Most notably, bilateral ties soured after 2018, when two landmark rulings from the South Korean Supreme Court ordered Japanese firms to compensate Korean plaintiffs for their wartime forced labor.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Reconciliation

How to Address the Racism at the Heart of Japan-South Korea Tensions

How to Address the Racism at the Heart of Japan-South Korea Tensions

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

By: Sayaka Chatani

Anti-Korean racism is at the heart of historic and unresolved tensions between Japan and South Korea. It will be near impossible to resolve disputes like the comfort women issue without addressing this racism. This is because the difficulty in reaching a consensus on the Japanese side often derives from the underlying tendency among many Japanese to view Koreans as “inferior” and “untrustworthy.” U.S. actors, including officials, businesses and academics, should understand the consequences of the important role they have played in perpetuating such prejudice and help right this wrong.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Global PolicyReconciliation

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Current  Projects

Resolving Tensions Between South Korea and Japan: An Essay Series

Resolving Tensions Between South Korea and Japan: An Essay Series

South Korea and Japan normalized relations in 1965, but unresolved historical disputes continue to undermine genuine bilateral reconciliation and optimal diplomatic, security and economic cooperation. Past efforts, both between the two countries and trilaterally with the United States, to help improve relations have generally emphasized a “future-oriented” approach that focused on common security and economic interests.

Reconciliation

The USIP Learning Agenda

The USIP Learning Agenda

In support of the Evidence Act and as part of the U.S. national security architecture, USIP is carrying out its own learning agenda. Peacebuilding has long been viewed as too messy and complex for evidence-based approaches — but USIP’s mix of research and practice belies that assumption.

Conflict Analysis & PreventionGenderJustice, Security & Rule of LawMediation, Negotiation & DialogueNonviolent ActionPeace ProcessesReconciliationReligionViolent ExtremismYouth

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