Call for Application: CATS Fellowships 2023

The Centre for Applied Turkey Studies (CATS) at Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), in Berlin, is awarding fellowships to post-doctoral researchers, think tankers, and practitioners working on Turkey-related issues. Researchers who have not yet completed their PhD but have a long-standing track-record in research on Turkey may also apply.

For the year 2023, CATS is announcing the availability of fellowships on the following topics:

1. Where will economic policies and economic transformation lead Turkey in the coming years?

Possible research questions include:

  • How can Turkey's close economic relations with the EU be used to anchor Turkey in the Western camp?
  • How are economic actors in Europe and in Turkey respectively reacting to unorthodox monetarypolicy?
  • Does the resilience of Turkey's economy rest on its huge informal sector, and if so, what does this mean for European policy?
  • How do Eurosceptic political actors in Turkey bridge the country’s economic dependency on the EU with their strategic pivot to Russia and China?
  • What do recent capital inflows of non-Western origin and “hot” money from abroad mean for the trajectory of the Turkish economy and Turkey-EU economic relations?

2. How does social change in Turkey impact Turkish foreign policy and its relations with Europe?

Possible research questions include:

  • Is there an intergenerational change in the perception of Europe and the West? How have perceptions of other geopolitical actors, such as the US, Russia and China, evolved?
  • How does Turkish civil society look to Europe and how do its members perceive the years to come? What is civil society’s perception of other geopolitical actors, such as the US, Russia and China?
  • Rapid urbanisation triggered the rise of Muslim/Islamist, heterodox and ethnicity based movements and parties and broadened the Turkish middle class. What does the slowing of rural out-migration and the growing middle class mean for Turkey's political future?

3. What are the drivers of Turkey's foreign policy and how can Europe deal with them?

Possible research questions include:

  • Should Europe consider investing in and cooperating with Turkey's dynamic defence industry to prevent the country's further drift towards Russia and China?
  • What does Turkey's recent arms development tell about the country's threat perception and its foreign policy  vision?
  • Can we speak of a military-industrial complex in Turkey yet, and if so, does it exert agency in foreign policy making?
  • What can NATO and the EU offer Turkey to outweigh the benefits of military and security cooperation with Russia, rapprochement with the Shanghai Cooperation Association, confrontational policy towards Greece and Cyprus, and tendencies to utilise irregular migration?
  • Why should Europe add to its existing offers to Turkey while Turkey behaves more and more adversarial towards Europe? Should Europe instead embark on a “less for less” approach with respect to anti-European policies pursued by Turkey?
  • To what extent does Ankara’s aspiration for an autonomous foreign policy prevent rapprochement between Turkey and its Western allies? What are the limits to strategic cooperation between Turkey and the EU under their respective aspirations for strategic autonomy, given the new geopolitical

Applicants are required to provide evidence of extensive research experience and significant publications.

The selected CATS fellows might collaborate with CATS and SWP colleagues. Research results will appear in the form of peer-reviewed CATS and SWP publications. The working languages are English and/or German.

Fellowships will be granted for a period of six to 18 months, starting in June 2023 at the earliest. Unless the fellows are required to travel to complete their individual projects, they are encouraged to reside in Berlin for the duration of their fellowship. Fellows will receive a monthly grant of € 2,800, reimbursement of costs for their arrival in and departure from Berlin, and an additional budget for research trips.

All applications must be submitted in the form of a single PDF document and must contain the following components in English or German:

  • A cover letter;
  • A CV including a list of academic publications;
  • Copies of relevant academic transcripts and/or diplomas (no translations needed);
  • A written proposal containing the description of the applicant’s project (not to exceed five pages, 2 cm margin, 1.5 spaced, 12pt Times New Roman font). This proposal must include:
    • A discussion of the research/project topic, relevant research questions/project objectives and an explanation of the academic and policy relevance of the project;
    • An overview of the state of research in the field;
    • An overview of the theoretical and methodological approaches;
    • A bibliography.

Applications will be evaluated by a jury consisting of CATS team members, other experts from SWP, and experts from partner institutions, which have not applied for funding.

In choosing applicants, the jury will put particular emphasis on the following criteria:

  • Academic and professional merit based on the applicant’s publications and work experience;
  • Academic and political relevance of the applicant’s project to the relevant research fields;
  • Coherence and feasibility of the applicant’s project;
  • Value of the project’s public outreach dimension.

The deadline for 2023 Fellowship applications is 13 February 2023. Please send your application by email to Applicants are responsible for submitting complete applications. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

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