The JM Chair is basically aiming to spread expertise on Europeanization and promote European values and intercultural dialogue among diverse groups of persons. It is envisaged to have a special impact on five target groups: 1. young faculty members at the University, including departments other than International Relations; 2. an increasing number of international students (as Turkey and IKBU are becoming and increasingly attractive education destination) predominantly from the Middle East, Caucasus, and African countries (around 350 university-wide at the moment) and Erasmus and other exchange students; 3. school pupils of different ages, who will be reached through the special emphasis placed on Istanbul Kemerburgaz University’s “Children’s University” (established in 2013); 4. school teachers who will receive special training on the incorporation of European values into the curriculum; and 5. international scholars who will be invited to participate in JM workshops, conferences and seminars. A specialized website, news releases on the occasion of JM events and a proposed book will lend necessary visibility and transparency to the project.
Taking into account the European Commission’s annual progress reports on Turkey, the topics of equality and justice appear to be the foremost European values, which deserve special emphasis in the context of Turkey’s ongoing candidacy for EU membership. The European Year for Development 2015 seems to be the right time to launch a JM Chair in Turkey by placing its emphasis on the explanation and promotion of European values. At the same time, intercultural dialogue needs to be placed at the center of Turkey-EU Relations. Through its proposed activities, the new Jean Monnet Chair is expected to make a significant impact in this area.The proposed JM Chair will make a special effort at providing space for intercultural dialogue in various forms. It is expected that through the proposed program (teaching activities, events and deliverables) a substantial contribution will be made to the development of European studies at the department and university, in Turkey, to the international discussion of Turkey-EU relations, to intercultural dialogue, as well as to education and information of non-academic stakeholders like teachers and pupils, civil society members and policy-makers.
The Jean Monnet Programme will be very instrumental in reaching out to larger groups of civil society in Turkey in order to sustain the Europeanization process. One of the striking innovations of the proposed Chair is that it will ensure that European integration and European values will also reach secondary school pupils and teachers through the Children’s University at IKBU, founded in 2012. As IKBU is the only university located in the Bağcılar District, the largest and one of the most diverse (including large numbers of Syrian refugees and Kurdish migrants) areas in Istanbul, the JM chair will have immense opportunities for social outreach and impact. Next to other ongoing projects at IKBU (particularly the Children’s University), the existing JM module of Prof. Kaiser, has already produced a well-working synergy with the Local Governor’s Office in Bağcılar.
In addition, a large impact is expected on the growing number of international students (350 at the moment) from a variety of countries in the Middle East and Africa. From the beginning of their studies at IKBU (orientation week) they will be introduced to the JM chair activities and opportunities (lectures, fieldtrips etc.). Thus, in time, they will take the acquired expertise on European integration far beyond the borders of Turkey. For Turkish students, the specialized courses of the JM chair will provide very important training and distinguished career opportunities in a country that is engaged in accession negotiations with the EU, and is in need of EU experts at all levels of governance and civil society.
The target groups of this project are mainly school pupils, university students, who would usually not be introduced to the European Studies field, students originating from non-EU countries, EU countries, and members of the local district authorities responsible for the implementation of national education curriculum. For these purposes, 4 courses, 4 workshops for the Children’s University, 4 field trips, 3 public lectures, 1 workshop for the spreading of JM activities at other universities, 1 conference and high-level research on the Europeanization of Turkey’s migration and integration policies, 1 website, 1 E-book, and several advocacy programs are proposed in this project. Each event will be evaluated by the participants themselves through survey technique in order to make sure that the JM Chair holder and her team will get feedback for the improvement of the JM Chair as well as for the formulation of future projects. Finally, the JM Chair will make sure in using both conventional and non-conventional techniques of dissemination such as the publications, websites, press releases, and social media that the activities will be disseminated in the widest possible manner.
JEAN MONNET CHAIR EVENTS