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  • Author: Tugçe Ersoy Oztürk
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: The influence of religion in the foreign policy has recently begun to be discussed among the scholars of international relations field. That the role of religion as an attribute of individuals and communities and in its institutional connections with the state cannot be ignored has started to be widely accepted. This study argues that besides the material reasons stemming from realpolitik, there are also behind the scene, certain “cultural codes” that have played an important role on the actions and discourses of Turkey's leaders on the foreign policies and especially on the deterioration of Israeli - Turkish relations. This study seeks to find the effects, if there are, of religion in the Israeli - Turkish relations by exemplifying Turkey in its relations with Israel to see whether the recent rupture is a result of the religious orientation of AKP government.
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Israel
  • Author: Deniz Göle
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: This article aims at presenting policy recommendations for Turkish decision makers with a view to address Turkey's needs to ensure effective and timely development assistance to fragile states. The analysis begins with a quick look at the controversial relation between aid, growth and poverty in order to provide a basis for understanding aid effectiveness as well as some of the ongoing debates and limitations in the development assistance field. It then gives an insight on the current state of Turkey's development assistance to fragile states and briefly explains major characteristics of Turkey's aid policies and practices in fragile state contexts. The study focuses on describing the necessity for shifting Turkey's development assistance paradigm and is concluded with recommending a new paradigm along with its operational framework in three pillars namely; Institutionalizing Peace, Building the Functional State and Risk Distribution.
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Paul Kubicek
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: The “Turkish model” has been upheld as a positive example for Middle Eastern countries, particularly in light of the Arab Spring. While Turkey is, in many respects, successful—it has a dynamic economy and in recent years has made great strides toward political liberalization— and the current Turkish government has high standing in the Arab world, this paper will argue that the applicability of a “Turkish model” to other settings is limited. In part, this is due to confusion over what the “Turkish model” precisely is or should be. For many years, the “Turkish model” was taken to be Kemalism, or a statist, authoritarian, secular order imposed “from above” with the goals of modernization and Westernization. More recently, the “Turkish model” would mean embracing a more moderate-type of political Islam, exemplified by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). While the AKP has proven to be successful in Turkey, it came to power in conditions very different than those that prevail in the Arab world at present. In particular, the AKP has evolved to reconcile itself to secularism in Turkey and embraced a program of Europeanization through accession talks with the European Union, an option not on the table in Arab states. Finally, a comparison of the political culture of Turkey with that in much of the Arab world reveals significant differences in values and priorities between the two cases.
  • Topic: Democratization
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Moritz Pieper
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: Turkey's role in the Iranian nuclear dossier is often portrayed as that of a 'facilitator' and 'mediator' in scholarly analyses. NATO member Turkey was seen as a potential bridge-builder between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the 'Western camp' of negotiators. During prime minister ErdoÄŸan's first legislature, however, Ankara's and Washington's foreign policy outlooks and strategic priorities started to diverge in the course of Turkey's new regional engagement in what has been theorized as a 'Middle-Easternization' of Turkish foreign policy. It is Turkey's location as a geostrategic hub in a politically instable region that informed Turkey's 'Zero problems with neighbors' policy and foreign minister DavutoÄŸlu's advocacy for a 'Strategic Depth' in Turkey's foreign and regional policies. Ankara emphasizes its need to uphold sound relations with its neighbors and publicly stresses an unwillingness to go along with Western pressure on Iran, and insists on the principle of non-interference and Iran's right to use nuclear power for peaceful purposes. All the same, Turkish-Iranian relations are undergoing a deterioration in the wake of the Syrian civil war at the time of writing, with both sides supporting diametrically opposite causes and factions. Turkish-Iranian fundamentally differing conceptions of regional order will also impact upon Turkey's leverage power to defuse the Iranian nuclear crisis. This paper therefore adds a timely contribution to our understanding of a multifaceted and nuanced Turkish foreign policy toward Iran that can be a critical complement to 'Western' diplomatic initiatives in the search for new paradigms for a new Middle East order.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Iran, Washington, Turkey, Middle East, Arabia, Syria
  • Author: Vahit Yucesoy
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: Well-researched, and well-documented, L'Iran et la Turquie face au Printemps arabe (Iran and Turkey in the face of the Arab Spring), written by authors Mohammad-Reza Djalili and Thierry Kellner, sets out to analyse the Arab Spring from the vantage point of two major non-Arab powers of the Middle East. Given the shortage of academic books on the reaction of these two major powers to the Arab Spring, the authors' book comes at a very pertinent time.
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Bulend Aydin Ertekin
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: According to the common idea, "the economic power determines the political power." By this general principle, when we look at the powerful states, we see that these states (countries) have, at the same time, the powerful political effect on the other actors. In this paper, some trade and economic data of Turkey are shown in order to localize its place in the World rankings. By this purpose, this paper argues the fact that Turkey which, being one of the countries belonging G-20, has tried since 1991 to play a big role in its bilateral relations in Caucasia, Central Asia and Middle East (CCAME). However, when the data of international business of Turkey and those of each one of the countries of Central Asia treated in the contents of research are studied, it is seen very clearly that the influence of Turkey in Central Asia is not very dominant or does not create a dominating effect over the economic plan in spite of the existence of the diplomatic effects, visa facilities and the visits based upon the cultural level and mutually testified. Without any doubt, although nobody can deny the existence and the probability of the gradual growth of Turkey's relations in CCAME's countries, Turkey, whose face is turned mainly towards the occident and the large majority of trade made within the European countries,tries to be an influential actor in the determined areas. Naturally, in spite of the celebration of Nawruz with the Turkic World, acting as a Muslim country in Middle East, and accepting the norms of European Union as a European democratic and laicized country in Europe, Turkey presents several identities and makes it a multi-colored actor who can be used in favor of Turkey's interests.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Globalization
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Alica Vidlickov
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: This article examines the Turkish-Armenian relations, its development throughout the history and the situation between those two countries since Recep Tayyip Erdogan became the prime minister of Turkey in 2003 resulting in the change of the Turkish foreign policy. The main focus is on the problems between Turkey and Armenia stemming out from the different view on the happenings in 1915 and the recognition of the so called Armenian genocide. The article analyzes the decision-making of the individuals, the international organizations and the states when it comes to the question of the so called Armenian genocide and the reasons of the decisions made by individuals and states. These decisions are subjected to criticism on the basis of the reality image theory by Ibrahim Canbolat (1993) and the Thomas theorem (1928) as well as other criteria. States are the most important actors in the article because they form the foreign policy and the influence of this particular problem of the decisions of states influences the relations between Turkey and the EU as well as other world powers. Turkey's importance and image are still worsened due to these reasons and unfortunately, it seems that states have no interest in finding the truth.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Genocide
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Armenia
  • Author: Mustafa Yetim, Cengiz Dinc
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: Turkey's foreign policy toward the Middle East has gone through a radical change over the decades. Earlier periods were marked by almost a complete neglect. However, since Özal, Turkey's interest toward the region has constantly increased. Especially in the last few years of the AKP government, in line with the new foreign policy vision, the Middle East has started to occupy a central place in Turkish foreign policy. In this article, underlying factors of this changing policy and newly envisioned regional role for Turkey will be analyzed. Turkey now pursues a pro-active and multidimensional foreign policy; and the Middle East seems to be the most suitable area for Turkey to implement a successful foreign policy based upon its new parameters.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Yavuz Selman Duman
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: This paper analyzes the main intuition behind the concept of Regional Innovation System (RIS) and the corresponding policy implications in a literal notion. The aspects that are the reasons of regional disparities in terms of innovation such as clusters, agglomerations, research and development (R) will be investigated via observing whether development agencies, clusters, industrial zones and universities which overall are contributing factors in regional development exist or not. Aligned with these aspects, this paper analyzes the reasons for the disparities between regions. Consequently, policy approaches and innovation strategies towards the regions that are distinguished due to disparities (as peripheral, metropolitan and industrial regions) will be presented. The following will constitute of the analysis of Turkey's Aegean, Marmara, East Anatolia and Southeast Anatolia regions with respect to the results reached in the prior analysis. The objective is to investigate the characteristics of the corresponding regions and determine the aspects for the developmental gap between them. The policy applications regarding regional innovation systems, the effects of universities in the mentioned regions and the adopted policies within the process of EU membership are presented. The literal analysis indicates that although in the recent years there have been improvements regarding regional development, previously it has been the western regions that received the most attention. These findings could be verified in a further research with a thorough statistical analysis using regional data on labour productivity, capital investment, expenditure on R, registered patents and economic growth.
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Begüm Burak
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: This paper attempts to analyze Turkish politics in the post-1980 period with a special reference to the relationship among the state elites, political elites and societal actors, and its impact on the constitution of civil society in Turkey. After the 1980 military intervention, the political and economic realms of Turkey witnessed a relative degree of liberalization through Özal's neo-liberal policies. The January 24 economic decisions paved the way for economic liberalization as well as letting new economic and societal actors emerge. These new economic actors were different from the prevailing economic actors which used to enjoy a considerable amount of opportunity spaces in the economic sphere. Together with the Özal governments, Islamic segments started to become powerful in both political and economic realms. This paper analyses the chief traits of Turkish politics and economics and their impact upon civil society aftermath the 1980 coup in general, and the relationship and/or interaction among the state elites, political elites and societal actors in particular. The engagements of newly-emerging societal and economic actors into Turkish political scene and the challenge of these actors against the so-called “Kemalist-Republican” elites are also illustrated in the paper. Moreover, state-Islam interaction, politics-Islam interaction as well as Kemalism-newly-emerging societal and economic actors interaction will be studied with a special emphasis to the post-1980 period. The major argument of the paper is that, in Turkey, both civil society issues and political issues reveal outcomes which are primarily shaped by the nature of the relationship between state elites and political elites in general and by Turkish political culture in particular.
  • Topic: Civil Society
  • Political Geography: Turkey