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Newsletter Sept 2018


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The interdisciplinary programme "Blickwechsel: Contemporary Turkey Studies" explores different aspects of current Turkish society, economy, and politics in five scientific projects. Researchers at German and Turkish universities work together. The exchange of knowledge and insights creates a new perspective on Turkey and, at the same time, on Germany; it is only through the interplay of
both perspectives that a comprehensive picture can be realised.

Within the framework of this programme, Stiftung Mercator funds the academic examination of Turkey in Germany and, simultaneously, the interconnectedness of both countries in the areas of research and teaching. The public can also benefit from the virtues of the academic approach: The projects share their insights with the non-academic public in various formats, building a solid ground for a debate based on sound knowledge.


Research Lab: Constitutional Politics in Turkey II

Institute for Social Sciences at Humboldt Universität zu Berlin/ Law Faculty at Bilkent University in Ankara

Since the failed coup attempt of 15 July 2016 Turkey's constitutional politics have been in turmoil. Under the state of emergency that has since been in force, numerous executive decrees have been issued leading to the partial suspension of the rule of law. The rule by decree has massive consequences for numerous political and societal fields.
Against this backdrop, the project analyzes the constitutional state in Turkey from different disciplinary, methodological, and thematic angles and in a comparative perspective - historically, regionally and in a problem-related manner. more

How “social” is Turkey? Turkey’s social security system in a European context

Institute for World Society at the University of Bielefeld/ Department of Political Science and Public Administration at Bilkent University in Ankara 

From 1961 to the present day, Turkey has described itself as a welfare state in its constitution. More than a third of the government budget is currently devoted to social spending. Yet, the country is not normally perceived as a welfare state. Under the current circumstances, social policy has moved to the
background of political debates, but it continues to thoroughly affect people's lives. Against this backdrop, the research project locates Turkey's experience in the field of social security in the broader world of welfare states. The project investigates developments in four key areas of social security since 1980: pensions, health, unemployment, and social assistance. more

Women’s and Gender Studies at Universities in Turkey

The project examines institutionalization and transformation of Women's and Gender Studies Centres (WGSCs) in their relation to academia, state, and civil society. Following the wave of the feminist movement in the 1980s, Women's Studies as an independent academic discipline was founded in the early 1990s at universities in Istanbul and Ankara. As of 2017, about 95 WGSCs have been established at universities all over Turkey.
Based on expert interviews and document collections, the project investigates statements, websites, teaching and research activities for selected centres that provide insights into their academic and socio-political motivations. more

TRIANGLE - Blickwechsel in EU/German- Turkish Relations Beyond Conflicts

German-Turkish relations have always had a significant impact on European-Turkish relations, as Ankara and Berlin are closely associated with each other. In times of rapid change within the Turkish political system, in Brussels as well as in Berlin uncertainty dominates the political discourse on future perspectives on EU/German-Turkish relations.
By adopting a distinct academic approach, the relationship's institutional architecture and the dominant narratives shall be assessed. The aim of this comprehensive analysis is to identify possible turning points – "Blickwechsel" - that might sustainably change the EU/German-Turkish relationship. more

Atheism & The Politics of Culture in Contemporary Turkey

Centre for Near and Middle Eastern Studies (CNMS) at Philipps University of Marburg/ Department of Sociology at Bahçeşehir University in Istanbul

For a considerable period of time now, the country's ruling elite has been striving to establish its culture of a pious conservatism as the commonly accepted norm in order to consolidate its power in state and society. Morally and religiously sensitive topics or criticism of religion have systematically been banned from education and the media, freedom of and from religion seem to face increasing pressure.
Understanding culture as a site of ideological struggle and a terrain of  containment and resistance, this research project investigates contemporary discourses on atheism in Turkey. more

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Institute for Social Sciences
Blickwechsel: Contemporary Turkey Studies


Postal Address:
Unter den Linden 6
10099 Berlin

+49 30 2093 66606
+49 30 2093 66588

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