Authored by Fulya Memişoğlu, this report, entitled “The Syrian Community in Turkey: Perspectives, Prospects, and Policies”, centers on the environment accommodating the Syrian community in Turkey by understanding and analyzing the policies made to regulate the influx of Syrians feeing from the civil war and to facilitate their social integration into society.
To examine how the policies targeting Syrians have tended to address the process of integration on legal, economic, and social levels, a fieldwork study was conducted from September 2017 to December 2017 with Syrians in the cities of Gaziantep and Istanbul.
Throughout the fieldwork, in-depth interviews were conducted with Syrians from diverse professional backgrounds including educators, journalists, legal experts, civil society representatives, business owners, physicians, and students. Additionally, two workshops—the first in Gaziantep and the second in Istanbul—were organized with Syrians in October 2017 and December 2017, respectively.
The report aims to contribute to the policy-making process pertinent to migration management and social integration of the Syrian community with actionable policy recommendations.
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Global identities: Embedding the Middle East and the North Africa Region in the Wider World
Contributed by Gülşah Dark, the research paper was published within the MENARA Project
This paper outlines the ways in which the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has been embedded in global identity processes and structures in the post-2011 period. It assesses MENA social and political developments in relation to global ideational and identity factors. It shows, global or universalist identity perceptions, in the form of support for human rights and democratic values, also influence the MENA region.
Dynamic global youth identities and cultures also influence an exceptionally “young” region and vie for the loyalty of youth against other identities. Changing dynamics of ethnic and religious identities among diasporas, which link the region with the wider world, modify social and political contexts within the MENA, especially some of its post-2011 conflicts.
Challenging the State in the Middle East and North Africa: The Role of Identities
Contributed by Zeynep Gülöz Bakır, the research paper was published as part in MENARA Project
Since independence, states in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region have been dominant players in shaping the regional order. The purpose of this paper is to explore and define challenges to the state and their role in shaping identities in the MENA region, and to evaluate their regional roots. The paper emphasizes two key aspects of nationalism in the region. The first concerns the existence of multiple identities and layers of identity that co-exist in the MENA region and which do not necessarily clash with each other. The second is that nationalism and national identities are not a recent phenomenon in the region. This paper shows that there are similarities as well as differences among the three major sub-regions of MENA in terms of the impact of identities at three levels of analysis.
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