June 2018 INSITER Study Trip Concluded


On June 14, 2017, the annual study and research trip of INSITER with the group of MA students of “European and International Affairs” of the Turkish-German University Istanbul was concluded. This year the students visited, Brussels (May 31- June 8) and Berlin (June 9-14). The journey served the purpose to experience real life politics first-hand 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.

The program 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). Alongside the joint visits to institutions the internationally composed group of students could engage in a simulation exercise that dealt with the post 2020 EU budget negotiations and democratic norm violations in Europe. The visit was also supported by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

Visit to German Bundestag, German Chancellery and Further Institutions in Berlin

In the second week of the INSITER study trip the group of MEIA students of the Turkish German University visited a number of political institutions in Berlin, Germany. The meetings were held inter alia with Edgar Lenski, European Law Department of the German Chancellery, Axel Schäfer, Vice-President of SPD group at the German Bundestag and member of the  BundestagWolfgang Merz, German Ministry of Finance and Kim-Mailin Weinrich, German Foreign Office.

In addition to the visits to official  institutions the stay in the German capital also served the purpose to exchange views with researchers and practitioners from Berlin-based think tanks and interest representations, notably the Institute for European Politics (IEP)Polis 180 and the German Banking Industry Committee. 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. Students and organisers are extremely grateful for the precious time and the valuable input from the different hosts and institutions.

INSITER Visit to European Parliament and European Policy Center

The annual INSITER study trip of the Turkish-German University’s MA programme “European and International Affairs” (MEIA) continued with various interesting meetings in Brussels, inter-alia with talks with Dr. Ingeborg Gräßle, Member of the European Parliament and Janis Emmanouilidis, Director of Studies at the European Policy Center (EPC). The Brussels visit was realized in close cooperation with partner universities, the University of Cologne and Sciences Po, and included students from University of Cologne, Sciences Po, and Charles University Prague.

Visitors group Ingeborg GRAESSLE

The exchange with Janis Emmanouilidis at the EPC focused on the effects of the Brexit process on the political atmosphere in the EU, possible collateral damages of the process in terms of unity in the EU and the threat of populism. The students and the INSITER team are thankful for the warm welcome and the enlightening exchanges.

Kick-Off of the 2018 INSITER Study Visit to Brussels and Berlin

On May 31, the annual INSITER study trip of the Turkish-German University’s MA program “European and International Affairs” has officially started. The program which takes place in the framework of the INSITER project, is also supported by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. In the next two weeks, it will take the students to Brussels and Berlin to gather first-hand insights in European decision-making and EU-Turkey affairs. A draft of the full program can be found here.

On June 1, 2018, the program was launched with a meeting with Tobias Grothe, Permanent Representation of the Federal Republic of Germany to the EU in Brussels. Mr. Grothe talked to the MEIA students about the institutional structure, mission and tasks of the Permanent Representation of the Federal Republic of Germany. The students also had the opportunity to discuss EU-Turkish and German-Turkish relations with Mr. Grothe.

The study visit continued with various interesting meetings in Brussels, inter-alia with visits to the Permanent Delegation of Turkey to the European Union and Permanent Representation of the Federal Republic of Germany to the NATO. Students met with Felix Kroll, expert at the Permanent Representation of the Federal Republic of Germany to NATO. The exchange focused on the main tasks of the Permanent Representation, Common Security and Defense Policy of the EU, Turkey-NATO dialogue and  NATO’s core tasks in crisis management and collective security. On the same day the students also met with Burak Erdemir, Deputy Permanent Delegate at the Permanent Delegation of Turkey to the European Union.




Meeting of the INSITER Advisory Board

On May 17, 2018 the third 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 2017-18,  midterm evaluation by the European Commission, additional potential cooperation partners, and on the planning of upcoming project activities, such as the study trip to Brussels and Berlin and the international simulation exercise in Brussels. The group also exchanged ideas on potential follow-up projects and applications post INSITER.

Upcoming Conference: “New political challenges for Germany, Turkey and the EU – V”

On behalf of the Turkish-German University, the University of Cologne, the Jean Monnet Module INSITER- Inside the Turkey-EU Relations, Migration and Integration Research Center ( TAGU) and German Academic Exchange Service DAAD we are pleased to invite you to participate in the 5th Joint Conference “New political challenges for Germany Turkey and EU” on May 18, 2018. The conference takes place in the premises of the Turkish-German University in Istanbul (Beykoz) and will bring together scholars from Turkey and EU countries who are engaged in EU studies and Germany-Turkey relations.

The conference program foresees a welcome address and three thematic panels:

  • Present and Future of EU-Turkey Relations
  • EU, Turkey, Germany Triangle in view of the Refugee Crisis
  • German-Turkish Diaspora Policies: Latest Trends and Impact on Bilateral Dialogue

The final program can be downloaded by clicking  here. In order to attend, please complete your registration by contacting pib@tau.edu.tr

INSITER Coordinator @ VIADUCT Annual Conference

INSITER Coordinator Ebru Turhan participated in the first annual conference  of the Erasmus+/Jean Monnet Academic Network “VIADUCT – Enhancing Visibility of the Academic Dialogue on EU-Turkey Cooperation” that took place in Brussels on 26-27 April 2018. The conference was co-organised by the Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA) and the Centre for Turkey and EU-Studies (CETEUS) of the University of Cologne. Turkish-German University serves as an official partner of the VIADUCT Jean Monnet Academic Network.

At the annual conference Turhan chaired the working group “PEOPLE”, which dealt with the key divers of and barriers to the functioning of the EU- Turkey Statement on the management of irregular migration.


INSITER-Yaşar University Roundtable on EU-Germany-Turkey Trio took place in Izmir

INSITER Jean Monnet Module at the Turkish-German University together with the UNESCO Chair on International Migration at the Yaşar University realized on 5 April 2018 a roundtable titled “Turkey-EU-Germany Relations at a Crossroads: What Future Awaits the Trio?” in Izmir, at the premises of the Yaşar University.

The roundtable was chaired by Prof. Dr. Aylin Güney, Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences at the Yaşar University, and kicked off by the introductory remarks of Dr. Rainer Lassig, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Izmir. The first panelist, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Alexander Bürgin, Jean Monnet Chair at the Department of Political Science and International Relations at the Izmir University of Economics, discussed Germany’s role and evolving position within the EU in view of the multiple crises and the diverse constraints on German influence in the EU, and addressed Germany’s impact on EU-Turkey relations.

Dr. Ebru Turhan, INSITER Coordinator at the Turkish-German University, elaborated on the uniqueness of the critical crossroads the EU-Turkish dialogue has recently encountered and discussed Germany’s increasingly visible role as a key veto player in EU-Turkey relations. The final panelist of the roundtable, Dr. Ayselin Yıldız, UNESCO Chair on International Migration at the Yaşar University, disclosed the latest developments in Germany’s immigration and integration policies, their impact on German-Turkish relations and discussed Germany’s prospective role in the further evolution of the EU’s migration policy.

Around 60 academics, civil society representatives and students from various universities in the Izmir region participated in the roundtable.

New Roundtable: Turkey-EU-Germany Relations at a Crossroads: What Future Awaits the Trio?

On April 5, 2018, following the EU-Turkey Summit in Varna, INSITER together with the UNESCO Chair on International Migration at the Yaşar University will organise a roundtable titled “Turkey-EU-Germany Relations at a Crossroads: What Future Awaits the Trio? “.

The roundtable will take place at 2:30 pm in the premises of the Yaşar University in Izmir and bring together academics, students and civil society representatives focusing on EU-Turkey-Germany dialogue.

The roundtable will be chaired by Prof. Dr. Aylin Güney (Yaşar University) and will include following speakers:

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Alexander Bürgin (Izmir University of Economics)
Dr. Ebru Turhan (Turkish-German University / INSITER Coordinator)
Dr. Ayselin Yıldız (Yaşar University)

Panel on Turkey’s Place in Europe and the World

INSITER Coordinator Ebru Turhan discussed together with Sinan Ülgen (EDAM) and Piotr Zalewski (The Economist) the current state of play in EU -Turkey relations at a panel titled “Turkey in Today’s World Map” on 17 February 2018 at TÜSIAD headquarters in Istanbul. The panel was organized by the Alumni network of Turkey Europe Future Forum.  The panel was chaired by James Rizzo (Stiftung Mercator). Throughout her speech Turhan particularly focused on the key drivers of recent bilateral dialogue, Germany’s role in the formation of the relations between Turkey and the EU and on the future institutional architecture of EU-Turkey affairs.