Social / Public Effect Focused

European Studies

Turkey’s integration process to the EU gained significant momentum between 1999 and 2005. It brought along significant structural and legal reforms. The accession of Greek Cyprus to the EU in 2004 and the magnitude of the political and economic cost of the negotiations that were initiated in 2005 along with other reasons first led to the skepticism of the political authorities and then the public. At this point, both in the EU and in Turkey, certain political, economic, and social ruptures are experienced. The researchers who work as part of İstanbul Bilgi University European Studies Field of Excellence will continue to contribute to the healthy progression of Turkey’s integration to the EU by organizing scientific activities, meetings, publications, podcasts, television programs, and social media activities in order to directly inform the public especially in those areas that Turkey needs during this period of ruptures. These studies will include issues such as Green Deal, modernization of Customs Union, foreign trade policy, competition law, visa liberalization, Refugee Deal, dialogue with civil society, gender, lifelong education, migrant harmony policies.

  • Prof. Ayhan Kaya, Department of International Relations (BMA Representative)
  • Prof. Ayşe Uyduranoğlu, Department of Economics
  • Assoc. Prof.  Kerem Cem Sanlı, Department of Law
  • Faculty Member, Özge Onursal Beşgül, PhD Department of International Relations
  • Faculty Member, Mehmet Ali Tuğtan, PhD Department of International Relations
  • Faculty Member, Büke Boşnak, PhD Department of International Relations
  • Faculty Member, Pınar Artıran, PhD Department of Law
  • Faculty Member, Ali Alper Akyüz, PhD Department of Arts and Cultural Management


Support for Civil Society

  • Prof. Nurhan Yentürk, Department of Economics (BMA Representative)
  • Prof. Bülent Bilmez, Department of History
  • Prof. Kübra Doğan Yenisey, Dean, Department of Law
  • Prof. Itır Erhart, Department of Media

Child Studies

Regarded as a field that needs to be approached with an interdisciplinary and holistic perspective, child studies also require collaboration between academia and field. In view of these needs, BİLGİ Child Studies Unit was founded in our university in 2017 and it was the first ‘child studies’ unit in Turkish academia. Child Studies Unit has been conducting both scholarly and social effect focused works on ‘child studies’ in Turkey by establishing collaborations with different departments, faculties, and research centers within the university. In this field of excellence that we define as ‘Child Studies’, the working areas that we have contributed to up until now by adopting a perspective looking out for the ‘best interest of children’, the most important principle of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the working areas that we would like to contribute to are as follows:

  • Ensuring that children learn their rights and that all the actors responsible for realizing children’s rights assume their responsibility in that regard and act accordingly
  • Increasing the awareness regarding the approach of ‘child’s well-being’ in Turkey and conducting innovative studies in order to depict the state of children in the framework of this approach
  • Carrying out studies in order to increase child participation, a developing working field in Turkey
  • Conducting preventive, protective, and supportive studies for ensuring that children are protected from all kinds of maltreatment and violence and that their development is supported by focusing on matters such as prevention of child labor, child protection at sports, prevention of sexual abuse, monitoring public expenditures for children
  • Ensuring that education environments are inclusive of all children and fighting against discrimination in education
  • Conducting studies that are innovative, scientific, and social effect focused in the field of children’s mental health
  • Conducting studies in the field of ‘Protection of Child Rights in Digital World’, a quite innovative and much-needed field for child rights in the new world
  • Supporting children in all developmental areas and ensuring that their potentials are fulfilled
  • Contributing to the development of mutual awareness between academia and field regarding child studies in Turkey and the development of a holistic approach regarding children


  • Prof. Pınar Uyan Semerci, Department of International Relations, Director of Center for Migration Research (BMA Representative)
  • Prof. Kenan Çayır, Department of Sociology, Director of Center for Sociology and Education Studies
  • Faculty Member, Esra Ercan Bilgiç, PhD Department of Media


Migration and Social Inclusion

Due to the transformation and change that it leads to in social, political, legal, economic, and cultural structures of societies, migration is one of the important dynamics of social life and a significant academic field. Addressing migration, which is a universal phenomenon and has become diversified and intense, has come to the fore as one of the important elements for contributing to a fair and equitable society with all its differences in the framework of social inclusion. As COVID-19 pandemic, which has been going on since 2020, has illustrated once again, it is vital that we examine the transformations that emerge especially in the context of human mobility due to epidemics, catastrophes, climate change, our production and consumption habits, and ongoing conflicts; migration’s social effects in relation to social justice, marginalization, discrimination, polarization processes during the period referred to as post-truth era, and the needs, arrangements, possibilities, and predicaments in this field for providing scientific and social contribution.

As academics and experts coming together under the roof İstanbul Bilgi University, our principal approach in Migration and Social Inclusion Field of Excellence is to recognize differences and to strengthen scholarly and social knowledge and practices against discrimination, social marginalization, and hate speech in Turkish society with a perspective based on respect, access to fundamental rights, and social inclusion that also includes migrants.

Our work aims for realizing social change that centers around equality and wellbeing in the context of access to fundamental rights, participation, and social inclusion of disadvantaged groups including migrants with an emphasis on a fair and equitable society. In order to share the scholarly knowledge in this field with society, methods such as open access publications, online trainings, visual materials, and impact analyses will be used.

  • Prof. Emre Erdoğan, Department of International Relations (BMA Representative)
  • Faculty Member, Gülay Uğur Göksel, PhD Department of International Relations
  • Faculty Member, İlknur Hacısoftaoğlu, PhD Department of Sports Management