4th Prague Populism Conference

Current Populism in Europe: Culture, History, Identity


Afternoon Session II: Turkey: populism or authoritarianism?

Tuesday, 22 May

13:15 – 15:00


Chair + discussant: Pelin Ayan (Anglo American University, Prague)

Selim Erdem Aytaç (Koç University, Istanbul)

Determinants of Preference for Populist Politicians: Evidence from Turkey

Selim Erdem Aytaç is an assistant professor in the Department of International Relations at Koç University in Istanbul, Turkey. He received his PhD from Yale University in 2014. His research interests lie in comparative political behavior with a focus on democratic accountability and political participation. His previous work has been published or is forthcoming in Journal of Politics, Political Behavior, Perspectives on Politics, Comparative Political Studies, and Journal of Conflict Resolution, among others.


Emre Erdogan and Tugce Ercetin (Istanbul Bilgi University)

The Populist Rhetoric of the ‘New’ Media of ‘New Turkey’ during the April 16th Referendum

Emre Erdoğan was born in Istanbul in 1971. He graduated from the Galatasaray Lisesi and from the Political Sciences Department of Boğaziçi University, where he also completed his MA and PhD. He has been working in the public opinion and marketing research sector since 1996 and became one of the founders of the Infakto RW (2003). He is expert on quantitative techniques, sampling, and political methodology and the author of numerous papers about foreign policy and public opinion, political participation, volunteerism, and social capital. He has conducted various research projects on Europeanization and European perceptions of Turkey, othering and empathy, polarization, populism, and seasonal agricultural workers. Currently, he is an associate professor teaching social statistics and research method course at Istanbul Bilgi University, maintaining his position as the co-head of the department.

Tuğçe Erçetin, PhD Candidate in Istanbul Bilgi University Tuğçe Erçetin was born in İstanbul in 1988. She is fourth year PhD student. She received her master’s degrees in political science from University of Essex with a thesis examining the perceptions of Armenian minorities in Turkey. Also, she completed her second master’s degree in international Relations department from Bilgi University, focusing on ordinary people and their nationalist poems during the Cold War period. She completed her undergraduate studies in the same department at Kadir Has University, completing with high honor award. She was also a research assistant for a project in relation to Othering and Empathy. Currently, she is maintaining her research assistant position for a project on populism in Istanbul Bilgi University.


Omer Tekdemir (University of Leicester)

The Left-wing Populist Moment and Kurdish Progressive Nationalism in Turkey

Dr Omer Tekdemir is an Associate Researcher and Lecturer in politics and international relations at the School of History, Politics and International Relations, University of Leicester, UK. Previously, Dr Tekdemir taught at the Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Westminster (London). His peer-reviewed academic articles have appeared in the British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, National Identities, Ethnicities, Peace Review: Journal of Social Justice and Journal of Southeast European and Black Sea Studies.  Dr Tekdemir’s research interests include political theory, political economy, international relations, discourse analysis, populism, identity, religion, conflict and peace, within the Middle Eastern, Turkish, and Kurdish area studies.