Ahmet İçduygu, Professor of Sociology

Primary Area of Focus: Migration studies, theories and practices of citizenship, the role of international organizations, civil society, and nationalism and ethnicity.

Research Summary: Ahmet İçduygu coordinated and participated in research which well integrates theoretical approaches on migration to public policy. In addition to his own individual research projects, Prof. İçduygu has conducted various research projects for the international organizations such as IOM, UNHCR, EU, OECD and ILO. As the director of MiReKoc, he is involved in arranging and participating in a range of projects in order to motivate national and international networks and to strengthen research capacity in the field of migration. MiReKoc has become a partner in several national and international research projects funded by various institutions and agencies.

Latest Projects

EURA-NET: Transnational Migration in Transition: Transformative Characteristics of Temporary Mobility of People (European Union Funded Project)

Researchers: Ahmet İçduygu, İlke Şanlıer Yüksel

The aim of the EURA-NET project is to map the extent of temporary transnational migration and mobility in the European-Asian context and assess its implications. Case studies will be carried out of eleven countries: China, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, the Netherlands, the Philippines, Thailand, Türkiye, and Ukraine. For each of these countries, information will be collected on the national policies and legislation in place concerning temporary migration, and the quantity of temporary border-crossing movements. In a following step, each country research team will interview 80 migrants about their experiences of temporary transnational mobility, and 40-60 policy-makers about how they perceive and portray temporary transnational movements. Finally, the project will focus on the European policy and legal sphere.The project is coordinated by the University of Tampere in Finland, and for Koç University, MiReKoc is participating. EURA-NET runs from 1 February 2014 until 21 January 2017. The findings of the EURA-NET project will be disseminated in the form of policy reports, policy briefs, policy seminars, and other academic publications.

LeFAMSol (European Union funded project)

Researchers: Ahmet İçduygu, Meriç Çağlar, Ayşem Biriz Karaçay

Starting from November 2013, a two year project funded by The Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency of the EU, ‘Learning for Female African Migrants’ Solidarity: Help-Desks for Female African Migrants in the Eastern Mediterranean Region (LeFAMSol)’ Project No: 539979-LLP-1-2013-1-GR-GRUNDTVIG-GMP, is a curriculum delevopement project for hard to reach target groups of adults, oriented towards cultural mediation and peer training. The project focuses on Female African Migrant Groups aiming initially to create pool of human resources that can operate gender/ethnically delineated ‘Self- Help Desks’.

INTEGRIM (European Union funded FP7 Project)

Funded by the Marie Curie Initial Training Networks (ITN) call FP7-PEOPLE-2012-ITN, the aim of this research training programme is to structure the existing high-quality research capacity on Migration and Integration policies and processes in the European Union and neighboring countries. Based on a longstanding cooperation, the eight partners involved from Spain, Belgium, United Kingdom, Portugal, Netherlands, France, Hungary and Türkiye are fully committed to establish a joint research and training programme on public policies and processes related with migration and the integration of immigrants. The project duration is 48 months.

Başak Can , Assistant Professor of Sociology

Primary Area of Focus: Medical anthropology, Political anthropology, State ethnography, Gender

Research Summary: My research engages with medical, political and legal anthropology from a qualitative research perspective. For my dissertation, I did an ethnographic research on political violence, focusing on cases of torture and enforced disappearances in Türkiye and explored how official and non-official ways of medico-legal documentation of political violence shape and are shaped by the daily struggles of the “victims” and witnesses of violence. Specifically, I address the intrinsic and complex relationship between politics of knowledge and state violence and analyze the ways in which different actors; the relatives of the forcibly disappeared and the tortured as well as, human rights activists/organizations and forensic experts interact with the repercussions of political violence.

Burak Gürel , Assistant Professor of Sociology

Primary Area of Focus: Political economy, historical sociology, development sociology, political sociology, agrarian change, rural development, welfare state formation, China, India, emerging economies

Research Summary: I am interested in economic, political and historical sociology, comparative analysis of agrarian change, economic development, and welfare state formation in the developing world with a particular focus on Brazil, China, India, and Türkiye. My dissertation investigated the role of the state capacity to mobilize rural labor in China’s superior rural economic development performance compared to India between 1950 and 1990. I am currently working on two research projects. The first project focuses on the relationship between state intervention and the differential agrarian development performances of Brazil, China, India, and Türkiye in the last three decades. The second project investigates the political roots of welfare state development in these countries.

Çağlar Keyder ,  Professor of Sociology

Primary Area of Focus: Ottoman Empire, the contemporary Middle East and Türkiye the social structure of global cities

Research Summary:  Prof. Keyder’s research areas are political economy and sociology of law. In addition to these areas his work has focused on the historical sociology of Ottoman Empire/Türkiye, on agrarian transformations, and on urban studies.  His books include Studies in Social History (1982), State and Class in Türkiye (1987), Istanbul: Between the Global and the Local (1999), From the Ottoman Empire to the European Union (2003), and The End of Agriculture as We Knew It (2013).

Dikmen Bezmez, Assistant Professor of Sociology

Primary Area of Focus: Urban studies, Disability studies

Research Summary:  My dissertation focused on the political economy of the urban space more generally and on urban regeneration projects more specifically. Subsequently I conducted research on the rights of the disability community to the city from an urban citizenship perspective. Currently I am working in the field of Disability Studies.

Erdem Yörük, Assistant Professor of Sociology

Primary Area of Focus: Social welfare, social movements, political sociology, historical sociology

Research Summary:  My research focuses on the political causes of welfare state development. I examine how welfare policies are shaped by state efforts to contain and mobilize grassroots politics.

Fatoş Gökşen, Professor of Sociology

Primary Area of Focus: Social policy, gender and educational inequalities, media studies

Research Summary:  Social policy research in the areas of gender, educational inequalities, and environment.  Political economy of information, health communication.

Murat Ergin, Associate Professor of Sociology

Primary Area of Focus: Sociology of culture; race and ethnicity; death.

Research Summary:  Ergin’s work on cultural and moral boundaries in Turkish society investigates the processes through which groups and individuals define their identities and distinguish themselves from the others using status symbols.

These status symbols are structured by cultural consumption habits (such as music, literary and media consumption habits), residential patterns, level of education and socio-economic status among others. In a project supported by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Türkiye (TÜBİTAK, 2009-2011), Murat Ergin, Fatoş Gökşen and Bruce Rankin examined the construction and maintenance as well as transgressing of boundaries in terms of the relationships between socio-economic variables, cultural consumption habits and moral judgments.

Ergin’s earlier work on popular music examined how the boundaries between high and low aesthetic tastes were created and contested. He also worked on race, ethnicity, and nationalism in the context of early republican (1923-1950) and contemporary Türkiye, analyzing the linkages between whiteness, Turkishness, and modernity as well as “East” and “West.” His work in this area of research is concerned with examining the role of race and modernity in the formation of Turkish identity and tracing the causes of interethnic conflict and prejudices, especially regarding the Kurdish issue. Death and dying has been another social domain in which he addresses issues of cultural boundaries and identities.

In a current project supported by TÜBİTAK (2013-2015), Ergin studies death announcements published in a nationally circulated daily newspaper in Türkiye in the last 60 years and observes the ways in which class distinction, cultural capital, gendered and ethnic inequalities, and consumption patterns emerge as important categories to locate the identities of the deceased and the bereaved in social and cultural hierarchies.