History of religion, philosophy of religion, comparative religion, Chinese philosophies and religious traditions, and cross-cultural study of religions
Professor Ro received his B.Th. and Th.M. from Yonsei University (Korea), an MTh from Union Presbyterian Seminary (formerly Union Theological Seminary), Richmond, VA, and his PhD from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Dr. Ro has written The Korean Neo-Confucianism of Yi Yulgok, SUNY Press and co-authored The Four-Seven Debate: An Annotated Translation of the Most Famous Controversy in Korean Neo-Confucian Thought, SUNY Press. He also edited, Dao Companion to Korean Confucian Philosophy, Springer, 2019 and co-edited, Raimon Panikkar: A Companion to his Life and Thought, James Clarke & Co, 2018. He is currently working on the translation and annotated commentary of Yi Yulgok's the Essentials of Sagely Learning to be published by the University of Hawaii in 2024.
He also published several book chapters in Neo-Confucianism including “Ecological Implications of Yi Yulgok's Cosmology” Confucianism and Ecology (edited by Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Berthrong), Harvard University Press 1998, and “Morality, Spirituality, and Spontaneity in Korean Neo-Confucianism” Confucian Spirituality, Volume Two (edited by Tu Weiming and Mary Evelyn Tucker), The Crossroad Publishing Company, 2004. He has published many articles in Korean studies, Confucian studies, and comparative religion. He is a recipient of the 2004 Yulgok Scholarly Award, the most prestigious academic award in Confucian studies in Korea. He is Director of Korean Studies Center at George Mason University.
Prof. Ro teaches in the areas of comparative religion, conflict and dialogue in religion, Mysticism: East and West, and East Asian religions, especially Confucianism and Daoism.