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Graduate Program

Taking stock of the Europeanization of civil society in Turkey: The case of NGOs

(2015) In A. Tekin & A. Güney, The Europeanization of Turkey: Polity and Politics. Routledge: New York


In this chapter, our aim is to take stock of the European Union’s impact on the development of civil society in Turkey by analyzing how Turkish nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) have been impacted by Europeanization processes. It is fair to say that until the early 1990s, due to the strong state tradition and an organic vision of society, civil society in Turkey had remained weak, dependent on and controlled by state institutions. Although domestic and global factors contributing to civil society development in Turkey since the early 1990s ought not to be disregarded, Turkey’s EU candidacy (1999-2005) and later the accession processes (2005 to present) served as catalysts in enhancing the autonomy, agenda-setting power, institutional capacity and legitimacy of NGOs in Turkey.