Project Team

Özgür Ünlühisarcıklı

Director of Ankara Office, German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF)

Özgür Ünlühisarcıklı is the director of GMF's office in Ankara, Turkey. Prior to joining GMF, he was the manager of the Resource Development Department of the Educational Volunteers Foundation of Turkey and previously, he worked as the director of the ARI Movement, a Turkish NGO promoting participatory democracy, and as a consultant at AB Consulting and Investment Services. Ünlühisarcıklı received his bachelor's degree in business administration from Marmara University and his master's degree from Koç University.

Pınar Uyan Semerci

Director, Istanbul Bilgi University Center for Migration Research

Pınar Uyan Semerci is professor at Istanbul Bilgi University Department of International Relations. Since 2007, she has been the Director of the Center for Migration Research and since 2017 she has been serving as the Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities at the same university. Holding a doctoral degree in Political Science from Boğaziçi University, her research areas specialize in social justice, human development, capability approach, poverty, child well-being, and identity formation. Moreover, she has various publications on child labour, political participation of youth, othering, polarization, migration and social policy.

Emre Erdoğan

Scientific Coordinator, TurkuazLab

Prof. Emre Erdoğan is the Head of the Department of International Relations at Istanbul Bilgi University. With a doctoral degree in Political Science from Boğaziçi University, he has served as researcher and senior consultant in various projects in academia and civil society. His research focuses on political participation, foreign policy and public opinion, child and youth well-being, methodology and statistics. He extensively studies and publishes about youth in Turkey, integration of Syrian refugee youth in Turkey, othering, polarization and populism.

Tuğçe Erçetin

Post-Doc Researcher, TurkuazLab

Tuğçe Erçetin has a BA degree in International Relations from Kadir Has University and MA degrees in Political Science at Essex University and in International Relations at Istanbul Bilgi University. She completed her PhD in Political Science at Istanbul Bilgi University. She works as post-doc researcher at Istanbul Bilgi University Center for Migration Research, and gives part-time lectures at the same university. She has been researcher in different research projects on othering, civil society and volunteerism, Syrian refugees and social entrepreneurship, and populism. Her current research interests include comparative politics, populism, political psychology, identity, migration, Turkish politics, and nationalism.

Birnur Eyolcu Kafalı

Project Assistant, TurkuazLab

After graduating from Marmara University Department of Political Science and International Relations, Birnur Eyolcu Kafalı worked in marketing and communication field in various companies. In 2015, she started her master’s degree in İstanbul Bilgi University Department of Social Projects and NGO Management. During her study, she mainly focused on gender issues and she is one of the founders of 40tilki Woman Initiative that creates an awareness about teen-dating violence. Her master thesis is about the education and gender roles in Turkey in which Purple Certificate Program is taken as case study. Her current interests include gender issues, teen-dating violence, civil society studies, education practises, information disorders and infodemic.

Ceylan Canbilek

Senior Program Officer, German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF)

Ceylan Canbilek joined The German Marshall Fund of the United States in 2005 and is currently senior program officer in the organization’s Ankara office in Turkey. Prior to joining GMF, she worked for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the International Organization for Migration, and the World Bank in Turkey. Canbilek received her bachelor’s in political science and international relations from Boğaziçi University and holds a master’s from Essex University in political economy.

Gizem Külekçioğlu

Projects Manager, Istanbul Bilgi University Center for Migration Research

Gizem Külekçioğlu has a BA in Political Science and International Relations from Marmara University, and an MA in International Relations from Istanbul Bilgi University. She joined Istanbul Bilgi University Center for Migration Research (BILGI-Migration) in 2007. At BILGI-Migration, she coordinates the organization of projects on migration and social inclusion, migration and education, child labour in rural and urban areas, polarization as well as activities on migration, art, and literature, and awareness raising about migration and migrants/refugees.

TurkuazLab Community

Elif Yahyaoğlu

Elif Yahyaoğlu graduated from Istanbul University Faculty of Law in 2017. After completing legal internship in 2019, she started Political Science and Public Administration undergraduate program at Istanbul Bilgi University. She is carrying on her education as a second year student.

Muhammed Aslan

Muhammed Aslan is a senior Psychology student at İstanbul University. He has rights-based volunteering experience with socioeconomically disadvantaged children and is now helping with preparing English subtitles for TurkuazLab videos.

Gizem Uğur

Gizem Uğur has B.Ed. degree in Psychological Counseling-Guidance and B.A. degree in Sociology from Istanbul University. Currenly she is a student M.A. in Nongovernmental Organizations Management and Social Project at Istanbul Bilgi Universtiy. She is also volunteer for children rights, oppurtunatiy equality, psychosocial supporting.

Rabia Yağmur Çoğalmış

Rabia Yağmur Çoğalmış is a third year International Relations student at Istanbul Bilgi University and is also doing a minor degree in Public Law. She has volunteered at different universities in the fields of women's rights, migration, refugees and gender equality. Lastly, she worked in the TUBITAK project on urbanization at IPC.

Şahizer Samuk Carignani

She received her PhD from Political Science at the IMT School for Advanced Studies Lucca in May 2016. Briefly, she worked for IOM Ankara on supporting the development of harmonisation policies in Turkey. Sahizer Samuk used to work as a short-term post-doc at the University of Luxembourg for a Horizon 2020 project: MOVE. In Italy, she worked at the University of Pisa, UBIQUAL, on brain drain from Italy. Currently, she works at LYNX Research Center, at IMT School for Advanced Studies, Lucca. She has publications on refugee integration, temporary migration policies, authors in exile, youth mobilities in Europe, gender and spatial mobility and policies for the highly skilled migrants.

Yeliz Kıroğlu

Yeliz was born in the Konak district of Izmir in 2001. She graduated from Buca Mehmet Akif Ersoy Social Sciences High School in 2020. She is a student of International Relations and New Media and Communication at Istanbul Bilgi University.

Hazal Özdemir

Hazal Özdemir was born in 2000 in Istanbul. She graduated from Kağıthane Anatolian High School in 2018. Currently, she is a student at Istanbul Bilgi University, Department of European Union Relations.

İdil Söker

İdil Söker is an undergraduate student at Istanbul Bilgi University in the International Relations and Economics (double-major) departments. She had voluntary work in gender mainstreaming and migration studies. Also, she coordinated the Refugee Committee in the Enka High School IB project conference. She worked in finance, legal sanction agencies, and modern art areas.