Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - MERGE - Migration and the Middle East

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Refugees in Turkey: A successful deal for whom?

A MERGE discussion in cooperation with TRANSMIT

Online Panel TRANSMIT_Logo1.png

Friday 14 January 2022

15:00-17:00 (CEST)

Link to the panel:

Turkey is host to the world's largest refugee population including 3.6 million Syrians. The country's acute economic crisis and the worsening humanitarian conditions in Afghanistan threaten the already challenging situation of refugees in Turkey with a growing anti-(Syrian) migrant sentiment that cuts across different sections of Turkish society.  In the TRANSMIT research project, we collected rich survey data on the life and wellbeing of Syrians and their Turkish host communities. Our findings demonstrate the actual outcomes of the so-called EU-Turkey refugee deal, which has often been presented as a “diplomatic achievement”, for Syrian refugees in Turkey. By presenting parts of our findings, we aim to shift the focus of migration policy debates, towards the lived realities of those most affected by them, and provide our panelists with an empirical ground to discuss the current situation and future perspectives. 



Dr. Zeynep Yanasmayan

is the head of the Migration Department at the German Centre for Integration and Migration Research (DeZIM). She is an interdisciplinary scholar working at the intersection of political science, sociology, and socio-legal studies with research interests on citizenship, migration and mobility studies, governance of religious diversity, transnationalism and diaspora politics. She is the author of The Migration of Highly Educated Turkish Citizens to Europe: From Guestworker to Global Talent (Routledge) and co-editor of The Failure of Popular Constitution-Making in Turkey: Regressing to Autocracy (CUP). Her work has previously been published in Ethnic and Racial Studies, Citizenship Studies, Political Geography and Law and Social Inquiry.



Dr. Sibel Karadağ

is an Assistant Professor at Kadir Has University in Istanbul. She is also a 2021/2022 Mercator/IPC Fellow. She received her BA and MA from Sabancı University and her MSc in Social Policy from the London School of Economics. She obtained her PhD in Political Science and International Relations from Koç University, which was on border governance in the Aegean Sea. In the 2018/2019 academic year, she was a Fulbright Fellow at Yale University. In addition to her numerous international project reports, her articles have been published in journals, including Geopolitics, Turkish Studies, and Comparative Migration Studies.




Dr. Simon Ruhnke

is a post-doctoral Researcher at the Berlin Institute for Empirical Migration and Integration Research (BIM) of the Humboldt University of Berlin where he coordinates the project "Transnational Perspectives on Migration and Integration (TRANSMIT)." He received is PhD in Economics from the University of Utah in 2021 for his work on the health and healthcare access of undocumented immigrants in the U.S. His research focuses on the intersection of migration and health, as well as determinants of (im)mobility and immigrant self-selection.


The panel will be moderated by Dr. Özge Yaka.