Asst. Prof. Berk Esen of the Department of International Relations has received the Sakıp Sabancı International Research Essay Award for his study “Elective Affinities Between Democratic Backsliding and Populism: The Cases of Turkey and Hungary in Comparative Perspective.”
The Sakıp Sabancı International Research Awards are Turkey’s only academic awards in the social sciences with an international outlook. First given in 2006, they are presented annually to honor the memory of businessman and philanthropist Sakıp Sabancı, who was also honorary chairman of the Sabancı University Board of Trustees. The awards include both an overall “Jury Prize” and three essay awards, one of which went to Dr. Esen this year; the essay awards, also selected by jury, are given to researchers under age 45. The 2018 awards were presented on April 10 in İstanbul.
The stated purpose of the Sabancı Research Awards is to “encourage research on all aspects of culture, society and politics” and to recognize “distinguished examples of fresh research with a view to engaging intellectual attention on Turkey’s role in the contemporary world.” In the last 13 years, they have been given for work in areas ranging from economics to foreign policy, history and social dynamics. The theme for the 2018 awards was “Challenges to Democratic Governance and Living Together in Turkey and the World.”