Project Description

A project by the Research and Teaching Area "Comparative Political Sciences and Political Systems of Eastern Europe" at Humboldt Universität zu Berlin in cooperation with the Law Faculty at Bilkent University in Ankara.

Despite having undergone extensive changes, Turkey's current constitution is still based on constitutional principles enacted after the military coup of the 12th September 1980. The prevalence of these undemocratic principles continues to obstruct the complete democratization of the country. Despite improvements respective the rule of law, basic rights, and civil/military relations, the currently valid constitution is still a source of friction for many political conflicts and cannot cope with an increasingly pluralized and polarized Turkish society. The political system, settled in the constitution, is increasingly called into question; we thus find the country within an atmosphere of upheaval, making the outcome difficult to predict.

In the interdisciplinary research lab scientists analyze "Turkish constitutional politics" from different disciplinary and methodological perspectives. The central question concerns the "democratic potential" of Turkish constitutional politics. Past, current and future processes of constitution-making shall be classified in this project. Furthermore, the question of whether the process and results of current struggles for a new constitution can have a balancing effect on existing social conflicts remains to be answered.

Regular research lab meetings and the project homepage offer a platform for members of the lab to present extracts of their work. What is special here is that not only finished work, but also work in progress, will be presented. Public lectures offered on a quarterly basis as well as other public events in Berlin, e.g. together with Network Turkey, offer further insights into the research lab and its work.


Prof. Dr. Silvia von Steinsdorff
Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Institut für Sozialwissenschaften
Unter den Linden 6
10099 Berlin
+49 30 2093 66570