For this qualitative study, it is of special importance to make the selection process transparent and comprehensible, not least because the statements of the approximately 80 chosen activists and experts will make up the central database for the subsequent analysis.
In spring 2014 experts on the issue of women's movements in Turkey were identified during two months of explorative field research in Ankara. In addition, field observations were made and literature, the Internet, and archives were studied in order to further concretize the research question. The researchers had already been visiting meetings and organisations beforehand as a way to get into contact with potential interview partners. Informal talks helped to verify the expert knowledge and to build mutual trust.
The selection of interview partners is intended to cover a wide range of the diverse perspectives on women's movements in Ankara. Personal features of the interview partners, such as profession, age, and ethnic background, shall reflect the heterogeneity of the women's and political movements within this metropolis of five million inhabitants.
Together with scientists from Istanbul, the research team chose 20 experts out of the Ankara research field with whom they conducted interviews in autumn 2014. Because of their functions and duties within the organisations and institutions, these people carry a special responsibility for activities and debates within the women's and gender political movements in Ankara. At the same time, they have privileged access to information relevant to the research questions such as how decision-making procedures and alliance policies are made and carried out.
Among the experts on women's movements in Ankara are members from institutional academics and from civil society. Hence interviews were conducted with experts at universities and research centers as well as with activists organized within the religious-conservative, kemalist, feminist, socialist, or LGTB*-oriented (women's) organizations and alliances.