Naoko Aoki is a nonresident senior fellow with the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security’s Asia Security Initiative. She is an expert in East Asian political and security issues. Her research has examined topics such as the North Korean nuclear problem, American alliances in Asia, including the US-Japan alliance, and emerging defense technologies in the Indo-Pacific region. She is also a scholar at the Center for International and Security Studies at Maryland.

Previously, Aoki worked as a nuclear security fellow in the US House of Representatives and was a Stanton nuclear security fellow and an adjunct political scientist at the RAND Corporation. She was formerly with Kyodo News, Japan’s largest news agency, reporting on the Japanese government from Tokyo before serving as a Beijing correspondent. She has visited North Korea eighteen times on reporting trips.

Aoki has appeared as a commentator for East Asian issues in major media outlets that include PBS, BBC, the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal. She regularly writes commentaries in publications including Foreign Policy and the National Interest. She holds a PhD from the University of Maryland and an MA from Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies.