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Summer Course in Turkey: Urban Political Ecology on the Road



Koç University is one of the most renowned private universities in Turkey since 1993. Along with the prestige of the University, it is one of the universities with the highest education in Turkey. Koç University is a university with a modern campus in a wooded area outside Istanbul’s city center. Koç University also has the largest and richest library in Turkey where students have access to any book.


Koç University is a leading research and liberal arts university located in Istanbul, Turkey. Recognized globally for facilitating cutting edge research in its full collection of Colleges, including Administrative Sciences & Economics, Engineering, Natural Sciences, Humanities & Social Sciences, Law and Medicine, Koç University, in the twenty years since its establishment, has been distinguished by its notable contributions to the elevation of education, knowledge and service both domestically and beyond.

Office of International Programs (OIP) was established in 2010 as an hub for the internationalization efforts at Koç University, focused on reaching out to prestigious global partners, quality students, academic/research initiatives raising the global presence and prestige of Koç University. Establishing linkages with top tier institutions of higher education, an increase in full time and exchange students, joint activities and presence in global rankings.

89 percent of Koç University students have the opportunity to earn a job before graduating from a university. 100 percent of university graduates find jobs in their specialty in the year they graduate. Also, Koç University graduates continue their education at well-known universities such as Oxford, Harvard, Stanford. The academic staff of Koç University consists of teachers who have been educated in the world’s most renowned universities. The most powerful university in Turkey is politics.

Are you a grad student or a young professional interested in urban political ecology? Koç University offers exactly what you need this summer! This program is not only a chance of having a very interesting and intense global academic experience with a hands-on approach to the city, but also of discovering a dynamic, vibrant, attractive city like Istanbul.

3 weeks of theoretical readings on urban political ecology, talks with guest academicians and activists on concrete issues, and field trips along hot routes e.g. Kanal Istanbul and areas of urban transformation such as the surroundings of the Golden Horn.

The summer school is structured around three main methodological axis:
– Co-learning via lectures, guest lectures and student presentations
– Participatory observations via field trips
– Reflection via co-production of a publication on Istanbul

You can earn either 6 ECTS credits or a certificate at the end of the course.

About Us

  • The USAC Istanbul program is currently on hold.
  • Experience a culture rooted in thousands of years of history and influenced by countless civilizations.
  • Live in a beautiful waterfront city, the only city in the world to span two continents.
  • Enjoy the city’s natural beauty and deep history, one of the most fascinating and attractive cities in the world.
  • Benefit from Istanbul’s mixture of culture, art, and religion from both east and west.

The Istanbul program is ideal for students who are interested in studying in a city rich in nature, history, and culture at the literal crossroads of the world, where Europe meets Asia. Named the 2010 European Capital of Culture, Istanbul is an excellent location to study and immerse in a culture that is simultaneously ancient and modern. Istanbul is the largest city in Turkey, and the third-largest in the world, and its 5,000 years of culture and history comingles with a modern, vibrant, cosmopolitan energy. You can enroll at Bahçeşehir University in a variety of disciplines for a semester or full year. Students are encouraged to take the included Turkish for Beginners course as well as courses from disciplines including Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Communication, Economics, Engineering, and Law.

he Istanbul program is administered in the US by the USAC Central Office and in Istanbul by Director Gürhan Kara and the staff in the Office for International Students, who are responsible for the overall operations of the program abroad: securing appropriate student housing, organizing exciting field trips, and overseeing your general well-being. They will arrange your housing, assist you with registration, and provide the mandatory on-site orientation.

  • Population: 12 million.
  • Distance from Ankara: 218 miles.
  • Distance from Rome: 855 miles.

Istanbul is a beautiful waterfront city, situated on the strait of Bosphorus, and is the only city in the world to span two continents. One of the oldest existing cities in the world, you will benefit from Istanbul’s mixture of culture, art, and religion from both east and west. Cultural, archaeological, and historical sites in Istanbul include magnificent palaces, fountains, tombs, Turkish baths, churches, mosques, cisterns, and city walls that remain from the Byzantium period. It also has the attractions of a modern city, with art, design, music, fashion, shopping, and cuisine to enjoy and savor. Turkish cuisine is renowned as some of the world’s best, drawing influence from all corners of the former Ottoman Empire. The city has extensive public transportation—ferry system, metro, and buses. The climate is temperate and you’ll experience all four seasons.

Think of cities with a long, rich history and Istanbul will be among them. Founded as “Byzantium” around 660 BC, it was also known as Constantinople. Upon the founding of the Turkish Republic in 1923, the city was renamed Istanbul and it has become the cultural and economic center of Turkey. The city and region’s long and extensive history is evident in historic ruins and buildings which coexist with the high rises, art, and culture of a modern, bustling city.

When living in Istanbul, you will experience a culture rooted in thousands of years of history and influenced by countless civilizations. For centuries, Turkey has been a crossroads of religions, not only of Islam and Christianity, but also of many others now forgotten by history. A list of historical figures and civilizations that lived in, invaded, conquered, or were conquered by what is now Turkey is impressive and spans centuries.

Recommended Reading for Istanbul, Turkey

  • Istanbul: Memories and the City (Orhan Pamuk)
  • Turkey: Bright Sun, Strong Tea (Tom Brosnahan)
  • Turkish Coast: Through Writers’ Eyes (Rupert Scott, editor)
  • Ataturk: The Biography of the Founder of Modern Turkey (Andrew Mango)
  • A Short History of Byzantium (John Julius Norwich)
  • Constantinople (Edmondo De Amicis)
  • The Emergence of Modern Turkey (Bernard Lewis)

Living Accommodations for Istanbul, Turkey

Student housing is available in several locations within walking or easy commuting distance from campus. Each location offers 24-hour security, kitchens, laundry facilities, TV, wireless internet, and a daily cleaning service. Some also offer fitness centers, cafes, and study areas.

Shared apartments may also be available. If interested, the BAU International Office will be able to assist you.


Academics 70%
Support 100%
Fun 80%
Housing 100%
Safety 90%

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Degree Level Bachelors, Masters, PhD.
Timeframe Summer
Language English
Subject Areas Agriculture, Conflict Studies, Conservation and Preservation, Ecology, International Relations, Political Science, Social Sciences
Accommodation Hostel

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