Former CATS Fellows

Edgar Şar

Jun 2022 - Mar 2023

Edgar Şar was a CATS Fellow at German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP). He is a PhD candidate in Political Science at Bogazici University. He received his MA degree in Political Science with his thesis “The Relationship Between Secularism and Democracy: The Case of Turkey in the 2000s”.

Şar is co-founder of the Istanbul Political Research Institute (IstanPol), a Istanbul-based Think Tank.
His research interests include theories of secularism and democracy and democratization.

In his research project at CATS, he focused on the processes of autocratization and the role of the opposition.

Nebahat Tanrıverdi Yaşar

Mar 2022 - Jan 2023

Nebahat Tanrıverdi Yaşar was a CATS Fellow at German Institute for International and Security Studies (SWP) in-between Mar 2022 - Jan 2023, and an IPC-Stiftung Mercator Fellow at CATS in-between 2020 and 2021. She works as a freelance researcher.

Her main research areas include Turkish foreign policy, Turkey and the North African States, Turkey's policies towards the African States, Security and defence policy, transition processes in the region. She was a researcher in the Center for Middle Eastern Studies (ORSAM), a research center based in Ankara (2010-2015). Previously, she worked with PANAROMA, a foreign policy journal, FTN News Agency, and the UAE Embassy in Ankara.

Her research project at CATS examined the status of the economic, political, and social policies of Turkey and China in Africa and  further explored the interactions between China and Turkey in Africa.

Professor M. Murat Erdoğan

Apr 2022 - Jan 2023

Professor Erdoğan was a CATS Fellow at German Institute for International and Security Studies (SWP). He worked at Turkish German University (2017-2022) and Hacettepe University (1987-2017).

His academic research interests include voluntary and forced migration, refugees, and people of Turkish origin living abroad, EU, political cartoons, political behaviour and Turkish foreign policy.

He conducts comprehensive public opinion research on a regular basis and publishes particularly the “Euro-Turks-Barometer” on Turkish diaspora in Europe, and the “Syrians Barometer” on Syrians in Turkey. He is a member of UNESCO-Turkey, board member of ISC of Metropolis International and the President of IGAM-Academy. Furthermore, he is a Faculty Member of Political Science Faculty of Ankara University and Director of Mülkiye Migration Research Centre.

His research projects at CATS examined firstly political behavior of Turkish society (“diaspora”) in Germany and secondly social cohesion process of Syrian refugees in Turkey and Germany.



Dr Hamidreza Azizi

Jun 2022 - Nov 2022

Dr Hamidreza Azizi wasa CATS Fellow at German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP).

Currently he is a Visiting Fellow at SWP's Africa and Middle East Research Division. He is also an associate researcher at Clingendael – the Netherlands Institute of International Relations. Between March 2020 and May 2022, he was an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow in SWP’s Africa and Middle East Division. Azizi holds a PhD in Regional Studies from the University of Tehran and has worked as a lecturer at several Iranian universities, including the University of Tehran (2016-2018), Shahid Beheshti University (2016-2020) and Allameh Tabataba'i University (2020-2022/ virtual courses).

Azizi’s research interests include security and geopolitical issues in the Middle East and Central Eurasia, Iran’s foreign policy, Iran-Turkey relations, and Iran-Russia relations. His research project at CATS focused on potential areas of cooperation and conflict in Iran-Turkey relations in light of the changing regional geopolitics in the Middle East and the South Caucasus.

Dr Tuba Eldem

Feb 21 - Jan 22 / Feb 22 - Oct 22

Dr Tuba Eldem was a CATS Fellow at German Institute for International and Security Studies (SWP). She is an assistant professor of Political Science and International Relations at Fenerbahçe University. She holds a PhD in Political Science from University of Toronto (2013) and carried post-doctoral research at the Research College of the Transformative Power of Europe, Freie Universität, Berlin.

Her main research areas are Turkish politics and Turkish defense and security policy, civil-military relations, Turkey-NATO relations, non-traditional security threats, cybersecurity and geopolitics of cyberspace. Her research project at CATS focused on the relevance of NATO for the Turkish Armed Forces and Turkey’s future in NATO.


Dr Ilke Toygür

Sep 20 - Jun 21/ Jul 21 - Jun 22 / Jun 22 - Sept 22

Dr Ilke Toygür was CATS Fellow at German Institute for International and Security Studies (SWP). She was Analyst of European Affairs at Elcano Royal Institute and has been a Visiting Researcher in European University Institute (EUI), University of Mannheim, and Brookings Institution.

Her main research areas include Turkish politics and Turkish foreign policy, European integration, Euroscepticism, political parties and elections in Western Europe, Geopolitics of Europe and transatlantic relations.

Her research project at CATS aimed to dismantle the positions of the EU institutions with regard to the foreign policy challenges presented by Turkey.


Galip Dalay

Apr 2021 - Mar 2022 / Apr 22 - Jun 22

Galip Dalay was a CATS Fellow. He is an associate fellow at Chatham House, a doctoral researcher in the Faculty of History at the University of Oxford, non-resident fellow at the Brookings Doha Center (BDC) and was a Richard von Weizsäcker Fellow in 2020-2021.

His research focuses on the question of regionalism, regional order and governance in the Middle East, Turkish politics, Turkish foreign policy, regional Kurdish politics, Middle Eastern politics, Turkish -Russian and history and politics of Turkish -Western/European relations, and history of post-colonial and post-imperial forms of internationalism.

Dalay’s pieces and analysis have appeared on Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, Project Syndicate, Newsweek, Le Monde, Al Jazeera, Open Democracy, Middle East Eye and The World Politics Review.

Kaan Şahin

Apr 2021 - Sep 2021

Kaan Şahin was a CATS Fellow in the Policy Planning Unit at the German Federal Foreign Office since April 2021.

His work focuses on geopolitics and technology, digital sovereignty, and foreign policy in cyberspace. He has been a research fellow for technology and foreign policy at the German Council on Foreign Policy (DGAP). During his time at the DGAP, he was seconded to the Federal Foreign Office as Strategic Advisor for Cyber Diplomacy/EU Presidency. Previously, he worked with Deloitte in the area of cyber risk and the public sector. Prior to that, he received the Mercator Fellowship on International Affairs and specialized in strategies to combat hybrid threats. In this capacity, he was based with the International Institute for Strategic Studies, the Special Representative of the OSCE for the Southern Caucasus, Carnegie Europe, and at NATO Headquarters.

Suat Kınıklıoğlu

Oct 19 - Oct 20 / Feb 21 - Jul 21

Suat Kınıklıoğlu was a former member of the Turkish Parliament. He has been a visiting academic at Oxford University St. Antony’s College, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress in Washington D.C. and resident scholar at the Institute of Politics at the University of Chicago. Also, he was the founding executive director of the German Marshall Fund of the United States’ Ankara office.

His main research areas are Turkish politics and Turkish foreign and security policy, Turkish-Russian relations, Turkey’s strategic identity and political traditions in Turkish politics and Turkey-U.S. relations.

His research project at CATS focused on Turkish neo-Eurasianism and Turkish-Russian relations.


Dr Bezen Coşkun

Jun 20 - Feb 21

Dr Bezen Coşkun is an expert in foreign policy. She received her PhD degree from Loughborough University (UK). She has taught at higher education institutions and received several national and international research grants and fellowships, including Intercontinental Exchange on Leadership in Conflict Transformation Research Grant (2015), British Council Research Grant (2014), and GR:ENN European Commission FP7 Research Grant (2014).

Dr Coşkun’s fields of interest are Turkish foreign policy, Turkish migration and refugee policies, conflict analysis, Human security, gender, and foreign policy. At CATS, she was conducting research for the project Turkey as a Partner and Challenge for European Security.

Alan Makovsky

Jul 20 - Dec 20

Alan Makovsky was a senior fellow for National Security and International Policy at Center for American Progress (CAP). From 1994 to 2001, he worked at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and founded and directed its Turkey Research Program. Alan has also served as a senior professional staff member on the Committee on Foreign Affairs in the U.S. House of Representatives and worked in various capacities related to Turkey and the Middle East at the State Department.

Alan has written widely on Turkish politics. His recent publications focus on Syrian refugees in Turkey, Europe’s Turkish diaspora, and the media landscape in Turkey.

During his fellowship, he contributed to the project A comprehensive refugee strategy for Turkey and worked on US-Turkish relations.