About Us

About us

Koç University Social Policy Center (KÜ-SPM) was established in April 2010. We began our journey with the aims of developing research and applied research projects on social policy and increasing public awareness on social policy issues in Turkey.

In Turkey the field of social policies is a vast arena where citizens frequently interact with state institutions, where service exchanges and the practical use of social rights occur. Yet it is also a space in which hierarchies, contention, unmet demands and inequalities reside. In KÜ-SPM, our purpose is to increase our accumulation of scientific knowledge and experience through field research, scientific meetings, cooperative implementation projects with stakeholders and through policy analyses. We aim to strengthen the channels of communication on social policy issues between official institutions and policy-makers; advocacy, expert and other NGOs; service-receiving citizens and the academia. As social scientists interested in this field of inquiry, we value social policy-making based on scientific evidence and on the analysis of that evidence.

We can summarize what sort of research has so far been completed within our center with reference to the research topics of scholars in our executive and advisory boards:

  • Types of employment, livelihood strategies, ways of dealing with economic crises in Turkey;
  • Citizenship capacities in terms of distribution of income and habits of tax-paying;
  • Gender inequalities, gender studies, participation of women in employment and other spheres of life;
  • Youth studies, education-employment transition in young people;
  • Factors influencing school access, attendance and success of children in basic education and secondary education;
  • Studies on the development of pre-school children;
  • Socio-economic exclusion;
  • Health reform, social security reform, social services and social assistance services;
  • Rights of people with disabilities and their social inclusion;
  • Urban sociology and urban transformation;
  • Irregular migration, refugees, internal displacement;
  • Communication, media technologies, social policy studies on the protection of intellectual property rights and of privacy rights.

Our research center is always open to collaborations of knowledge production and implementation with social policy-making and policy-implementing governmental bodies, other universities, municipalities, NGOs working on social policy-related issues, EU and UN institutions and other stakeholders.

Within KÜ-SPM, located in Koç University’s Rumelifeneri Campus, there are 7 social scientists (Executive Board) and 2 researchers employed as administrative staff. In the near future, as new needs arise, we will be making announcements for employment opportunities for interns, MA and/or PhD students and post-doctorate researchers. You can still send us your CVs and research interests for future reference to ku-spm@ku.edu.tr.

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