Final Output of INSITER: Open Access Palgrave Volume on EU-Turkey Relations

The Open Access edited volume co-edited by INSITER’s Academic Coordinators Ebru Turhan and Wulf Reiners (2016-17) and titled “EU-Turkey Relations: Theories, Institutions, and Policies” has been published by Palgrave in June 2021. Click here to access and download the volume for free. The edited volume functions as the final output of the INSITER module. 

The open access book explores the new complexities and ambiguities that epitomize EU-Turkey relations. With a strong focus on the developments in the last decade, the book provides full access to a comprehensive understanding of the multifaceted relationship through three entry points: (1) Theories and Concepts, (2) Institutions, and (3) Policies. Part I brings together complementary and competing analytical approaches to study the evolution of EU-Turkey relations, ranging from traditional integration theories to novel concepts. Part II investigates the institutional machinery of EU-Turkey relations by analyzing the roles and perspectives of the European Council, the European Commission, and the European Parliament. Part III offers analyses of the policies most relevant for the relationship: enlargement policy, trade and macroeconomic policies, foreign and security policy, migration and asylum policies, and energy policy. In Part IV, the volume closes with a systematic survey of the conditions under which cooperative trends in EU-Turkey relations could be (re)invigorated. The systematic setup and the balanced combination of distinguished experts from EU- and Turkey-based institutions make this book a fundamental reading for students, researchers, lecturers, and practitioners of EU-Turkey relations, European integration and Turkish foreign policy.


Dr Ebru Turhan has been awarded the VIADUCT Teaching Award with Jean Monnet Module INSITER

The VIADUCT Jean Monnet Network “Enhancing VIsibility of Academic DialogUe on EU-Turkey Cooperation” has awarded INSITER Coordinator Dr. Ebru Turhan with the VIADUCT Teaching Award for her Jean Monnet Module INSITER “Inside the EU-Turkey Relations (2016-2019)”.

Dr. Julie Smith (Cambridge University) held the laudatory speech for Ebru Turhan in the framework of the VIADUCT Award Ceremony on 23 October 2020. She stressed not only the module’s contribution to the research and teaching agenda, but also its bridge function between junior and senior academics. Being the first module on EU-Turkey relations at a rather young university, senior scholars underlined Ebru Turhan’s effort to put the EU (back) on the Turkish academic map.


Best Student Research Papers 2018-2019

INSITER is proud to publish the best student research papers written during 2018-2019 for the four lectures/seminars that are components of the INSITER project. The following papers have been chosen as the best ones to be published given their overall academic quality and the grades the students received for them:

AVU 114, Furkan Durmaz, “EU-Turkey Relations on the axis of Refugee Crisis”, read here.

AVU 101, Asiye Bilge Kırca, “The Role of European Identity in Turkey-European Union Relations”, read here.

AVU 106, Onur Alp, “U.S Foreign Policy: Why U.S Withdrew from Iran nuclear deal
An explaining with foreign policy theories “, read here.

AVU 107, Fatih Hacıbektaşoğlu, “Is European Parliament democratic or non-democratic?”, read here.

2019 INSITER Study Visit to Brussels and Berlin Successfully Finalized

On June 30, 2019, the INSITER study and research trip was concluded with the participation of MA students of “European and International Affairs” of the Turkish-German University Istanbul . This year the students visited, Berlin (June16-23) and Brussels (June 23-30). The journey served the purpose to gather first-hand insights into real-life policy making and to take teaching inside the Turkey-EU relations by enabling the students to step into the everyday work of European, Turkish and International Organizations. By getting into direct contact with decisions makers of leading political, economic and administrative institutions students were able to study the complex interaction between the EU, national and subnational level of decision-making in the ‘multi-level’ political system of the European Union and to get a hands-on perspective on how Turkey-EU relations are shaped in practice.

Diffrent from the last year, the INSITER study trip started this year with visits to a number of political institutions, think tanks and interest organizations in Berlin, Germany. The group of MEIA students of the Turkish German University held meetings inter alia with Dr. Funda Tekin, Director Institute for European Politics (IEP Berlin), Dr. Kai Olaf Lang, Division EU/Europe of German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), Christian Moos, Department Europe and international affairs, German Civil Servants Association (DBB), Wolfgang Merz, German Ministry of Finance, Julia Grzondziel, German Chancellery and Kim-Mailin Weinrich, German Foreign Office.

Finally, in order to grasp the history of Germany and Berlin, the group also went on a city tour which is guided by Prof. Dr. Hartmut Marhold (CIFE/TDU) and  focused on the political architecture of the city.

The second week the INSITER study visit was realized with various interesting meetings in Brussels, inter-alia with talks with Berber Biala Hettinga, Senior Executive Officer, Legal Affairs/Human Rights in the EU, the Amnesty International European Institutions Office, an excursion to the European Parliament, Ilka Pettinen, Project Assistant, Transparency International EU, Noel Farrell, Directorate General Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission, Łukasz Wielocha, Head of Unit iat the International Projects Department, Permanent Representation of Poland to the EU.

The full programme of the excursion can be found here.

INSITER International Simulation Exercise – 2019

On June 28 and 29 , 2019, as an integral part of the study trip week in Brussels, the INSITER students participated in an international simulation exercise with students from Cologne, Paris and Prague. The overarching idea of the exercise was to discuss serious concerns regarding compliance of member states with EU’s fundamental principles and values  in the form of a two day Moot Court of the European Court of Justice that focused on “violations of the European Union’s common values.” 

The program took place at the Palais des Académies and was partly carried out in cooperation with other international partner institutions such as the University of Cologne, Science Po and the Centre International de Formation Européenne (CIFE). 

Students had started to prepare for the simulation exercise online in April already in interdisciplinary and international teams in order to defend their position at the Moot Court. The best teams received an award for their performance. 

The final judgement of the simulation exercise’s judges can be found here.

Conference “New Political Challenges for Germany, Turkey and the EU – 2019”

INSITER realized in cooperation with the Center for Turkey and EU Studies (CETEUS), Turkish-German University Political Science and International Relations Department, Center for Migration and Integration at the Turkish-German University (TAGU) and German Academic Exchange Service DAAD an international symposium titled “New political challenges for Germany, Turkey and the EU – 2019” with the participation of around 120 international guests including academicians, representatives of non-governmental organizations and the media and students from different universities on 3 May 2019 at the Beykoz campus of the Turkish-German University.

The opening speeches of the symposium were given by the Coordinator of the German Consortium of the Turkish-German University, Prof. Dr. İzzet FURGAÇ, faculty member of the University of Cologne and Vice-President of the German Consortium responsible for the foundation of the Turkish-German University, Prof. Dr. Wolfgang WESSELS, and the head of the Political Science and International Relations Department Prof. Dr. M. Murat ERDOĞAN. Following the opening speeches, the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to Turkey Martin ERDMANN gave a keynote speech titled “A World in Disarray: What Can Be Done to Fix It? A German View”.

Following the speech of Ambassador Martin ERDMANN, the symposium has continued with the opening panel titled “Present and Future of EU-Turkey Relations”. At the panel chaired by Prof. Dr. Atila ERALP (Istanbul Policy Center), the present and future of  EU-Turkey relations have been discussed by Dr. Günter SEUFERT (SWP), Assoc. Prof. Dr. Beken SAATÇİOĞLU (MEF University), Alina THIEME (University of Cologne), and INSITER Coordinator Asst. Prof. Dr. Ebru TURHAN (Turkish-German University) based on the results of the research projects conducted by the panelists. 

Following Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Director for EU Affairs Faruk KAYMAKCI’s speech during which an interactive survey on EU-Turkey affairs was conducted and the recent developments in EU-Turkey relations were evaluated, the second session has started with the moderation of Prof. Dr. Michael KAEDING (University of Duisburg-Essen). In this session titled “Migration and Diaspora Policy in EU-Turkey Relations: Latest Trends and Impact”, Prof. Dr. M. Murat ERDOĞAN (Turkish-German University), Prof. Dr. Ahmet İÇDUYGU (Koç University) and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ayselin GÖZDE YILDIZ (Yaşar University) made presentations. In the panel various topics including the effects of the  refugee crisis on EU member states, the challenges that Turkey faces and the policies that were implemented due to the Syrian refugees in Turkey, and lastly, the role and shortcomings of the readmission agreement in solving the refugee crisis were discussed.

In the final panel of the symposium titled “Current Trends in World Politics and Reflections on EU-Turkey Relations”, latest developments and trends in world politics have been discussed from manifold angles. At this session, chaired by Prof. Dr. Mathias JOPP (IEP Berlin), Prof. Dr. Birgül DEMİRTAŞ (TOBB ETU), Asst. Prof. Dr. Deniz KURU (Turkish-German University), and Prof. Dr. Bernhard STAHL (Passau University) made presentations.

The symposium was finalized by the closing remarks of the INSITER Coordinator Asst. Prof. Dr. Ebru TURHAN,  Asst. Prof. Dr. Deniz KURU and Prof. Dr. Wolfgang WESSELS and followed by an networking dinner. The program can be read here.



Meeting of the INSITER Advisory Board

On May 2, 2019 the fourth meeting of the INSITER Advisory and Steering Board took place in Istanbul. The meeting served the purpose to jointly reflect on the programme implementation during the last three years, the key achievements of the project including teaching, publications, events and dissemination. The group also discussed potential follow-up projects and applications on EU-Turkey relations following the conclusion of the INSITER module.

Interview with DW on EU-Turkey Relations

INSITER Coordinator Ebru Turhan’s comments on the progression of Turkish accession process and possible future institutional framework of the relations between Turkey and the EU were published in Deutsche Welle’s 22 November 2018 article titled “Stratejik ortaklık mı tam üyelik mi?“. In the interview Turhan has particulary put emphasis on the likely evolution of a new partnership arrangement outside the accession framework in view of the current deadlock in accession negotiations. However, she also emphasized that it was going to be very difficult for both parties to find an alternative suitable arrangement, which is likely going to be a long process.

A Periodisation of German-Turkish Dialogue

INSITER Coordinator Ebru Turhan participated in the joint conference of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation (KAS) and German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) titled “300 Years Old German-Turkish Friendship: Status and Perspectives” and organized between 18 and 20 October 2018 in Antalya. During conference Turhan presented a paper titled “Periodisation of German-Turkish Relations and Official German Position on Turkey’s EU Accession Process: an Analysis in view of the Convergence / Divergence of the Norms and Interests”. 

Best Student Research Papers of 2017-2018

INSITER is proud to publish the best student research papers written during 2017-2018 for the four lectures/seminars  that are components of the INSITER project. The following papers have been chosen as the best ones to be published given their overall academic quality and the grades the students received for them:

AVU 114, Halil İbrahim Kısacık, “The Role of Internal and External Factors in EU-Turkey Relations: Remapping Turning Points”, read here.

AVU 101, Florian Gontek, “Was the European Parliament election 2014 second-order and how significant is the Spitzenkandidaten Procedure?”, read here.

AVU 107, Sevde Nur Gürakın, “How Does Refugee Crisis Promote Turkey’s Position in the Triangle “Turkey, Germany and the European Union”?”, read here.

AVU 106, Ece Mutlu (book presentation), “Deterrence, the spiral model and intentions of the adversary”, read here.