Wrenn Yennie Lindgren

Senior Research fellow

Wrenn Yennie Lindgren is a Senior Research Fellow and Head of Center for Asian Research at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), as well as an Associate Research Fellow at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI).

Her main research interests are: foreign policy analysis, international relations in East Asia and the Indo-Pacific, the politics and foreign policy of Japan, and Asia-Arctic diplomacy.

Recent research projects have focused on: Japan’s foreign and security policy legitimation; infrastructure power and responses to China’s Belt Road Initiative (BRI); Japan’s multilateral engagement, including NATO-Japan relations; identity politics in Sino-Japanese relations; Japan-Russia energy cooperation; Japan’s engagement in Southeast Asia; and alternative alignments in the Indo-Pacific. In addition, since joining NUPI in 2013, Wrenn has worked on issues related to Asia-Arctic diplomacy.

Wrenn currently leads the multi-year project Roads to Power? The political effects of infrastructure projects in Asia (ROADS) , funded by The Research Council of Norway. She also co-leads the international research project ‘Coercive and Emotional Diplomacy in East Asia: Japanese Responses’, funded by Nordforsk, and co-developed and participates in the projects Chinese Anger Diplomacy (ANGER) and China and Evolving Multilateral Craftmanship in the Age of Digitalization (CHIMULTI), both funded by The Research Council of Norway.

Wrenn’s peer-reviewed work has appeared in, inter alia, The Pacific Review, The Hague Journal of DiplomacyJapanese Journal of Political Science, Asian Perspective, Asian Politics & Policy, Polar Geography and Journal of Eurasian Studies. She co-edited the volume China and Nordic Diplomacy (Routledge, 2018) and contributed chapters on Japan to the volume Kinship in International Relations (Routledge, 2018) and The Routledge Handbook of Arctic Security (Routledge, 2020).

Wrenn holds a PhD in International Relations from Stockholm University and master's degrees in International Policy Studies (Monterey Institute of International Studies, U.S.) and Asia and Middle East Studies (University of Oslo). She has extensive fieldwork experience in Japan and was a Japan Foundation Fellow at Meiji University from 2018-2019 and visiting fellow at Waseda University`s Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies (GSAPS) in Tokyo.


2016-2021 Stockholm University, PhD in International Relations

2018-2019 Visiting Researcher and Japan Foundation Fellow, Meiji University, Tokyo

2012-2014 University of Oslo, MPhil Asia and Middle East Studies

2007-2011 Monterey Institute of International Policy Studies, MA International Policy Studies

2009-2010 Waseda University Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies, Tokyo, Visiting Graduate Student

2008-2009 The Inter-University Center for Japanese Language Studies, Stanford University, Yokohama

2004-2007 Pepperdine University, BA International Studies and French

Work Experience

2021- Senior Research Fellow, NUPI

2017- Associate Fellow, Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI)

2013-2021 Research Fellow, NUPI

2016-2017 Visiting Research Fellow, Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI)

2011-2013 Communication Consultant, Freelance

2011 Junior Fellow, Office of the Rector, United Nations University (UNU), Tokyo

2010 APEC Liaison, Economic Section, U.S. Embassy Tokyo, U.S. Department of State

2010 Intern, Political Section, U.S. Embassy Tokyo, U.S. Department of State

2007-2008 Graduate Research Assistant, East Asia Nonproliferation Program, James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies

2005-2007 Teaching Assistant, French Department, Pepperdine University

2006 Intern Analyst, International Affairs and Trade Section, U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO)

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