#BestReads :

In times of Corona, you don't just want to sit bored at home? Then let's read together! We will introduce you here to several worth reading articles from our partners in Turkish.


Read #24

Report on Freedom of the Press in Turkey 2020-2021

The issue of freedom of the press in Turkey is no longer a controversial issue. Domestically, all critical groups complain about the government’s pressure on media more than ever before. In this context, Freedom Research Association has been monitoring the state of the freedom of the press since 2014. The latest report is titled ‘The Freedom of Press in Turkey: 2020-2021 Report’ and has been prepared by Burak Bilgehan Özpek. It is addressing the state of the press freedom in Turkey from August 1st of the year 2020 to September 30, 2021. The report examines the pressure on press organizations and journalists by using three variables: “legal restrictions”, “economic dependency ” and “polarization”.

The issue of freedom of the press in Turkey is no longer a controversial issue, and the claim of the political authority to regulate the flow of information and thought has become obvious. Both the academic literature on the subject and the political statements from the international community indicate that this issue is now a generally accepted phenomenon.

Burak B. Özpek
Burak Bilgehan Özpek, FRA

Read #22

Access to Data for Sustainable City: An Investigation on Disaster and Building Data

This report, conducted by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) and supported by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation, aims at improving innovation, urban data collection and analysis, and open data capacities in democratic civic governance in Turkey. “Access to Data for Sustainable City: An Investigation on Disaster and Building Data” focuses on (1) status quo of open data movement and ongoing studies, (2) data up-to-dateness and quality, and (3) access to data through disaster and building data in Istanbul, New York and Munich. Inspired by the experiences in the cities of New York and Munich, the report presents policy recommendations for improved access to data regarding disaster management in Istanbul.

It has become clear that in the face of disasters, the number of which has considerably increased due to the climate crisis, data-driven urban policy - making plays a central role in the disaster management process.

Dr. Özge Aktaş Mazman

Download the full report!

Read #21

Trading at the Edge: The Role of Green Technologies in Turkey-Germany Trade

The study of the “Trading at the Edge: The Role of Green Technologies in Turkey-Germany Trade" conducted by the Centre for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies (EDAM) and supported by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation have been published.

At the end of September 2021, Turkey announced that it would ratify the Paris Agreement, which it had signed in 2016. Domestic and international developments, including the European green deal, makes it inevitable for Turkey to discuss its policy choices to converge to the green transformation process that is taking place globally. This paper evaluates Turkey’s potential in the green economy from a trade perspective. It aims to provide a new methodology for Turkey in measuring the green economy. Special attention is given to Germany, which is the largest trading partner of Turkey in our definition of green products. 41 products that fell under the broad sectors of Renewable Energy and Green Infrastructure, Transport Technologies, and Green Friendly Construction were analyzed during the trade analysis.

As one of the developing countries with a promising potential for the green transition, cleaner energy, and transport construction, Turkey needs its own strategy to position itself for the upcoming discussions around the green economy policies.


Download the full report here!

Read #20

Youth Perspective on Turkey's Future

Istanbul Economics Research with contribution of FNF Turkey conducted a survey study about the views of young Turkish people regarding the future. The study was carried out with 3000 young people between the ages of 18-30 in 81 provinces across Turkey.

The distrust of new generations in politics poses a problem not only for today but also for the future of society. If politics (in the eyes of the participants) will not be beneficial in solving today's problems, current political problems will accumulate in the future. Accordingly, it is possible for populism to reproduce itself in Turkey in the future.

türkiyenin gelecegine genc bakis
Istanbul Economics Research

#Read 19

Study on the Situation of LGBTI+s Working in Turkey

The results of the " Situation of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex and Plus Employees in Public and Private Sectors in Turkey Research 2021" conducted by Kaos GL and the Gender and Women's Studies Research Center at Kadir Has University and supported by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation have been published. In the study, which also investigated the effects of the pandemic on working life, it was noted that the stress, anxiety and feeling of insecurity in the workplace decreased thanks to remote working; but still, the increase in the risk of unemployment and the difficulty of finding a job affected LGBTI+s more negatively.

[...] this year again demonstrates that we have a long way to go in order to prevent discrimination based on gender identity, sexual orientation and sex characteristics, to provide LGBTI+ individuals a peaceful and efficient work environment, to eliminate disadvantages to access employment, and to generate legal and corporate policies and civic strategies to guarantee equality in terms of social and economic rights.

Gender Studies Kadir Has
Prof. Mary Lou O’Neil and Dr. Reyda Ergün

Read #18

Education Monitoring Indicators

published by the Education Reform Initiative (ERG)

The Education Monitoring Indicators booklet is one of the products of the FNF-funded
Education Data Literacy Summer School, which was held between August 12-14, 2020.

Since its inception in 2003, ERG has worked towards ensuring children’s right to quality
education by helping to create evidence-based policies. To serve this purpose, ERG has
been publishing Education Monitoring Reports since 2008, wherein quantitative data
acquired from various sources are turned into education indicators. This document
presents these indicators, which have been used by ERG to monitor education for the last
12 years, along with their data sources and calculation methods, and it provides an
overview of the changes that have been made to the education system over the course of
the last 13 years.

This document highlights key Education Monitoring Indicators, such as data on resources
allocated for education and how these resources have changed over the years. Other
indicators, including those employed by MoNE to monitor annual objectives, such as
number of students per classroom or teacher, the percentage of private education
institutions and net enrollment rates, are also found here. Region specific indicators are
included, as they highlight regional differences in education. Moreover, indicators on
youth who are not in employment, education or training and on the PISA study are
included to enable comparison of Turkey’s education to that of OECD countries.

By publishing the Education Monitoring Indicators booklet, ERG aims to share the key
indicators they have been using for monitoring education over the course of the last 12 years
with the public and education shareholders and also to start a discussion on the adequacy
of these indicators. Although the data and the indicators shared here provide essential
information on Turkey’s education system, they nonetheless only provide a limited picture
of the whole system, thus impairing a thorough monitoring and evaluation of the changes
in education. Yet, it is possible to overcome this shortcoming by sharing more
comprehensive and detailed data with the public, promoting data literacy skills,
discussing the adequacy of the current indicators and creating new ones.

Click here to download!

Data literacy can be defined as the ability to obtain meaningful information from data. It is a necessary skill for stakeholders in terms of monitoring and evaluating education systems and actively participating in data-driven decision-making processes.

ERG Education Monitoring Indicators
Özgenur Korlu, ERG

Read #17

Language Rights and Linguistic Pluralism in Turkey

published by Bülent Bilmez

This book is based on the papers presented by specialists from different countries at a workshop series titled “Linguistic Diversity and Language Rights” that took place on 18, 19, 25-26 July 2020. The workshop series was organized by The Study Group on the Cultures of Turkey at Istanbul Bilgi University with the support of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation in Istanbul and the contribution of the Network on Language Rights Monitoring, Documentation and Reporting (Dil Hakları İzleme Belgeleme ve Raporlama Ağı, DHİBRA). During the first three sessions of the workshop series, the issues of linguistic diversity and language rights were discussed in their various dimensions. During the last session of the workshop series, human rights monitoring and reporting with respect to linguistic rights were discussed by experts in the field. The three papers presented at the last session, mostly focused on experience and observation sharing, compose the last part of the book. All papers were revised by the authors after the presentations, and most were re-written in the form of developed articles. The comments and recommendations of the discussants at the end of the sessions have contributed enormously to this revision and rewriting process.

This edited volume proposes to fill a substantial gap in Turkey about linguistic rights as an essential part of cultural plurality.

Linguistic Plurality in Turkey
Bülent Bilmez

Read #16

Defending LGBTI+ Rights in Turkey: “We are in the Same Storm but not in the Same Boat”

by Marcel Tuğkan Gündoğdu (SPoD)

Turkey’s civic space has lately been shrinking due to the tense political climate and the deterioration of the democratic institutions. The ruling party is using its growing stranglehold on the country and represses civil society leaders, civil society actors, and organizations especially in the field of LGBTI+ rights. Follow the author examining Turkey's recent developments regarding LGBTI+ Rights and civil society.


The oppressive climate has greatly affected the rights of LGBTI+ people, Human Rights defenders and organizations working in the LGBTI+ Rights field [...].

Marsel Tuğkan Gündoğan

Read #15

Pioneering Change: The Women's Movement in Turkey

As a part of our #FemaleForwardInternational campaign we present to you Burcu Karakaş, a committed and hard-working journalist who is not afraid to raise her voice. She covers a wide range of topics, like female and minority rights, migration and free speech. In this article she covers the women's right movement in Turkey, the Istanbul convention and how she sees young women as pioneers for political change.

I am first a woman and then a journalist. In a country where political oppression pervades our daily lives, so much so that it becomes, every day, harder to breathe, I am a "feminist journalist"—I see life and journalism from a feminist perspective.

Burcu Karakas
Burcu Karakaş

Read #14

Turkey's Curricula from 2005 to 2020 Gender Equality and Secularism

Various changes have taken place over the past fifteen years in the Turkish education system. Among them, the changes in the school curricular programs in 2017 and 2018 have been one of the most important. Read more about these changes in the report summary!

Toplumsal cinsiyet eşitliğine dair toplumsal bilincin arttığı bir dönemde 2018 programlarında 2005 programlarından ileriye gidilmemesi, hatta kadın haklarına dair kazanımların tasfiye edilmesi, 2018 programının önemli bir eksikliği olarak öne çıkıyor.

Education Report 2005-2020
Dr. Sezen Bayhan

Read #13

Report on Freedom of the Press in Turkey 2019-2020

Domestically, all critical groups complain about the government’s pressure on media more than ever before. In this context, Freedom Research Association has been monitoring the state of the freedom of the press since 2014. The latest report is titled ‘The Freedom of Press in Turkey: 2019-2020 Report’ and has been prepared by Burak Bilgehan Özpek. It is addressing the state of the press freedom in Turkey from January 1st of the year 2019 to June 21, 2020. The report examines the pressure on press organizations and journalists by using three variables: “legal framework”, “dependency framework” and “polarization”.

“Türkiye’de basının özgür olup olmadığı hararetli tartışmaların konusu değildir. Ortada bir gerçek vardır ve bu konu artık tartışma dışıdır.”

Press Freedom Report in Turkey 2019-2020
Burak Bilgehan Özpek

Read #12

Safety and Privacy in the time of COVID-19: Contract Tracing Applications

As the number of global COVID-19 confirmed cases passed 5 million, public and private actors are continuing to take measures to contain the pandemic. A common denominator for containing the spread of the virus has been the use of a trio of non-pharmaceutical interventions: social distancing, testing, and contact tracing for infected individuals. While there are significant scientific and political debates on both social distancing rules and the number of testing, this paper focuses on contact tracing applications (apps). Contact tracing provides authorities information required to identify anyone who has been in relatively close contact with the subject individual. Health authorities widely use this instrument to create the list of at-risk individuals who a certain patient has been in contact with. Read more about the advantages and disdavantages of contact tracing in the full report prepared by the EDAM Centre for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies! 

"Temas takip uygulamaları üzerine olan tartışma, her şeyden önce güvenlik ve gizlilik arasındaki dengeye ilişkindir."

Safety and Privacy in the Time of COVID-19: Contract Tracing Applications
Emre Kursat Kaya (EDAM)

Read #11

Turkey Free Expression Trial Monitoring Report (2019-2020)

169 cases, 15 cities, 89 convictions. Under the auspices of the Media and Law Studies Association, court monitors observed trial hearings of journalists, academics, lawyers and others between February 2019 and March 2020. Most of them were charged with terrorism-related crimes. Read the full report prepared by the International Press Institute (IPI) and the Media and Law Studies Association (MLSA)!

"Türkiye’nin Terörle Mücadele Kanunu (TMK), sıklıkla gazetecilere ve ifade özgürlüğüne karşı bir araç olarak kullanılıyor."

Turkey Free Expression Trial Monitoring
Uluslararası Basın Enstitüsü (IPI), Medya ve Hukuk Çalışmaları Derneği (MLSA)

Read #10

Democratic Citizenship and Democratic Values in Textbooks

Are you wondering how secularism and gender equality are addressed in Turkish textbooks? Read the full report prepared by Dr. Canan Aratemur Çimen and Sezen Bayhan!

"Kitaplarda indirgemeci bir yaklaşımla vatandaşlık alanının sınırları çizilirken, tarihsel değişimden ve sosyal çatışmadan arındırılmış bir politik dahil olma kavramsallaştırması yapılıyor."

Democratic Citizenship and Democratic Values in Textbooks
Dr. Canan Aratemur Çimen, Dr. Sezen Bayhan

Read #9

The Situation of LGBTI Employees in the Public and Private Sector in Turkey

You want to learn more about the experiences of LGBTI+ employees in the public and private sector in Turkey? Read the report prepared by KAOS GL and the Gender and Women's Studies Research Center of Kadir Has University.

"Çalışanların, iş hayatında cinsel yönelim, cinsiyet kimliği ve interseks durumlarını gizlemeye zorlanmaları, kişinin sadece iş saatlerinde değil iş dışında da, kendisi olarak davranamaması sonucunu doğurmaktadır."

KaosGL Rapor
Prof. Dr. Melek Göregenli

Read #8

Censorship and Self-Censorship in Turkey

This report covers cases of censorship in arts and media throughout the first 10 months of 2019 (January 2019 - October 2019). It is the third such report prepared by Susma Platform in an effort to build collective memory on violations of freedom of expression. It is evident from the cases covered in the two substantial reports, which we prepared during the State of Emergency (OHAL) and subsequently in the period of “normalized OHAL” following the enactment of the Law No. 7145 (2016-2017 / 2017-2018), that we have been going through an intense and taxing period in terms of freedom of expression.
Confiscating books, banning events, banning access to online news reports, censoring news, suspending broadcast of TV shows, public attacks, intimidation, arrests, criminal investigations, prosecution and imprisonment… It seems that this intensity and volume of restrictions do more than just strengthen and extend the scope of censorship practices, which already became systematic at the hands of the state, through various mechanisms, actors and methods; they also normalize self-censorship that hinders free speech like a brick wall. The long and diverse list of cases presented in the report attests to this conclusion.

"Susma Platformu’nun 2019 yili içinde hazirlamis oldugu kapsamli “vaka dökümünü” bastan sona okuyunca, sektirmeden adeta yilin her günü baski, yasak ve sansür haberiyle karsilasiyorsunuz. Dökümün sonunda ise bir korku filminden çikmis gibi oluyorsunuz."

Türkiye'de Sandür ve Otosansür
Susma 24

Read #7

The Future of Europe and Turkey

20 years ago at the Helsinki Council of 1999 by declaring “Turkey as a candidate country destined to join the EU”, our leaders confirmed the common future of Turkey and the EU. Since then, political, economic, geostrategic and demographic developments not only in Europe, the neighbourhood but also around the world reinforced this argument. Thus today it is time to have a new paradigm within the new political cycle of the geostrategic EU administration 2019-2024 in Turkey-EU relations with a clear accession perspective and it is also time to steer the wheel of change to the benefit of both sides.

"Türkiye müzakere sürecini yürüten aday ülke olarak terörizm, güvenlik, savunma, düzensiz göç, radikalleşme, yabancı düşmanlığı ve enerji arzının güvenliği gibi temel konularda AB için en önemli bir kazançtır."

Avrupa ve Türkiye'nin Geleceği
Faruk Kaymakcı

Read #6

Advancing Women's Political Leadership: Leave No One Behind

Women’s empowerment and gender-related barriers are on the agenda of several global and regional organizations. This article focuses on the role of International IDEA as a global organization in advancing Sustainable Development Goal 5 (SDG) in order to achieve gender equality and empowerment for all women and girls, and presents some of the gender-responsive initiatives implemented by International IDEA in undertaking its mandate to support democracy worldwide and contribute to the achievement of SDG 5. As Chair of the Board of Advisers, I would like to share some insights and first-hand information on the issue. I am going to explore the successes, challenges, and opportunities surrounding this issue in relation to advancing SDG 5 to achieve gender equality and empowerment of women and girls by 2030 from the perspective of a global democracy organization.

“Siyasi liderliğe katılımları ve burada temsil edilmeleri için kadınların önünde çok sayıda engel bulunmaktadır.”

Kadınlarını Sizasi Liderliklerinin Geliştirilmesi: Kimseyi Geride Bırakma
Emine Bozkurt

Read #5

An Ethic Evaluation of the Measures Taken Against the Outbreak

The Corona outbreak led to a conflict between the protection of public health by state decisions and individual rights. In this best read, Dr. Ercan Avcı reflects the ethical legitimacy of the measures taken against the Corona epidemy. 

"Özellikle salgın hastalıklar ve doğal afetler gibi olağanüstü dönemlerdeki halk sağlığı gereklilikleri, bireysel hakların ve kararların kısmen veya tamamen göz ardı edilmesine sebep olabilmektedir."

Salgın Tedbirlerinin Etik Açıdan Değerlendirlilmesi
Ercan Avcı

Read #4

Media Watch on Hate Speech Report May-August 2019

As in many parts of the world's, discriminatory discourse and hate speech are gaining grounds in Turkey, too. In this edition of #10BestReads, Hrant Dink Foundation analyses how some media is contributing to the polarization and enmity in the Turkish society. 

"Türkiye medyası da, uzun yıllardır, farkında olarak veya olmayarak, nefret söyleminin ve ayrımcı söylemin en önemli kaynaklarından biri olarak, toplumdaki kutuplaşmayı dikkate değer biçimde besliyor."

Medyada Nefret Söylemi Raporu Mayıs-Ağustos 2019
Hrant Dink Vakfı

Read #3

New Tools for Supporting Urban Policy: Open Data Platforms and Urban Dahsboards 

Nowadays, policy development is driven more and more by data and information. What are the New Tools for Supporting Urban Policy in Turkey? In our third article of #10BestReads, we find out together!

"Kentte yaşama oranının sürekli arttığı bir dünyada kent yaşamına dair sorunlar da artış ve çeşitlilik göstermektedir. Buna paralel olarak sorunlarla ve krizlerle baş etme yöntemlerimiz de farklılaşmaktadır."

Kentsel politikanın desteklenmesi için araçlar
Bürge Elvan Erginli, Murat Tülek

Read #2

The Social and Economic Effects of Corona

In our second article of #10BestReads, we are reading about how the economic effects of Corona are felt in Turkey. Check Arın Demir's report with first-hand insights from economists, employers and employees!

"Türkiye olabilecek belki de en kötü şekilde yakalandı bu krize. Had safhadaki ekonomik kırılganlığımıza bir de bu yaşananlar eklendi."

Koronavırus'ün Sosyal ve Ekonomık Etkileri
Arın Demir'in Ekonomist Enes Özkan ile yaptığı röportajdan

Read #1

The End of the World as we Know it: A Strategy Suggestion for Liberals

In our first article of #10BestReads, Burak Bilgehan Özpek is talking about the end of the world as we know it. Get comfortable and start reading!

"Koronovirus tehdidinin devlet kaynaklı olmaması ve insan hayatını ciddi bir şekilde riske atacak olması, devletleri bir süre jeopolitik fantazilerden koparacak ve daha gerçek, ölçülebilir işlerle iştigal etmeye zorlayacaktır."

Bildiğimiz Dünyanın Sonu: Liberaller için bir Strateji Önerisi
Burak Bilgehan Özpek