Stiftung Mercator and Istanbul Policy Center Fellowships, Istanbul, Turkey

Deadline: 1 April 2013
Open to: Young academics and professionals with minimum Master degree
Fellowship: Monthly net payment of 2,700 EUR, family allowance of a maximum 500 EUR net per month and a lump sum travel allowance of 1,500 EUR net


Stiftung Mercator and Istanbul Policy Center at Sabancı University invite academics and professionals with an interest in Turkey to apply for a fellowship program that aims to strengthen academic, political and social ties between Turkey and Germany, as well as between Turkey and Europe. The program is based on the premise that in an increasingly globalized world, acquisition of knowledge and the exchange of people and ideas are preconditions for meeting the challenges of the 21st century. Mercator – IPC Fellows work at Istanbul Policy Center (IPC), an independent policy research institute with global outreach located in the center of Istanbul.

IPC’s mission is to foster academic research and its application to policy making. The Center is firmly committed to providing decision-makers, opinion leaders, academics and the general public with innovative and objective analyses of key domestic and foreign policy issues. IPC offers the Mercator – IPC Fellows access to a broad network of academics, civil society activists and decision makers as well as a unique platform for sound academic research to shape hands-on policy work. Likewise, fellows profit from Sabancı University’s exceptional intellectual capital and vast reserves of scientific knowledge.


In the 2013/14 round, at least six Mercator – IPC Fellowships are available for outstanding young academics and professionals who have significant prior work experience. The fellows will be expected to work on academic or practical projects at IPC. A Master’s degree (or equivalent) is required for this position, but a PhD degree is strongly preferred. Applicants without a PhD degree will only be accepted if their work experience and expertise meet the program requirements to the jury’s satisfaction. Projects which focus on the German-Turkish nexus are likewise preferred. Applicants cannot apply for fellowships to fund their PhD dissertations.

Fellowships are available for 6 to 12 months and are predominantly, but not exclusively, granted to applicants from Germany or with a strong connection to German society. Unless the fellows are required to travel to complete their individual projects, they are encouraged to be physically present in Istanbul for the duration of their fellowship.

Fellowship areas

The fellowship program will be open to academics and professionals who work in one of the following three thematic areas:

  • EU/German-Turkish relations
  • Climate change
  • Education

Project proposals can be of an academic or practical nature. However, in order to ensure the socio-political impact of fellowship work, applications should also include a proposal for at least one project designed for public outreach, such as an event or publication.


Mercator – IPC Fellows will receive a monthly net payment of 2,700 EUR. Additionally, fellows may be entitled to a family allowance of a maximum 500 EUR net per month, and a lump sum travel allowance of 1,500 EUR net. The 2013/14 fellowship round begins September 1, 2013 and the deadline for applications is April 1, 2013. Please send your applications and direct further questions by email to Mr. Daniel Grütjen (see below for contact details). All applicants will receive a notice of receipt by email. Applicants are responsible for submitting complete applications. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Selection criteria

Mercator – IPC Fellows will be selected by an international jury consisting of leading experts in the three thematic areas. In choosing an applicant, the jury will place particular emphasis on:

  1. Academic and professional merit, based on the applicant’s publications and work experience;
  2. Academic and political relevance of the applicant’s project to one of the three thematic areas;
  3. The general impact of the project on EU-Turkish and especially German-Turkish relations;
  4. The applicant’s connection to German society;
  5. The coherence and feasibility of the applicant’s project;
  6. The value of the project’s public outreach dimension;
  7. The applicant’s language skills. A very good command of written and spoken English is mandatory. Knowledge of German and Turkish is an advantage.

Application procedure

All applications must be submitted in the form of a single PDF document1 and must contain the following documents written in English (incomplete applications will not be considered):
a) A cover letter;
b) A completed application form
c) A CV, including a list of all academic publications;
d) Copies of relevant academic transcripts and/or diplomas (no translations needed);
e) An abstract containing a detailed description of the applicant’s project. The abstract should not exceed 5 pages (2 cm margin, 1.5 cell spacing, 12pt Times New Roman font). This abstract must include:

  • Discussion of the research/project topic, relevant research questions/project objectives and an explanation of the academic and political relevance of the project;
  • An overview of the state of research or similar projects in the field;
  • An overview of the theoretical and methodological approaches to be applied in the project (if relevant); A bibliography or background information related to the topic.

f) A second abstract with a short description of at least one additional project designed for public outreach, such as an event or a publication. The abstract should not exceed 2 pages (2 cm margin, 1.5 cell spacing, 12pt Times New Roman font). This abstract must include:

  • An outline describing the project’s format and time frame;
  • A description of the target group, political relevance and predicted impact of the project;
  • A budget plan and a list of possible partner institutions.

If the fellowship project described under e) is of a practical nature and already contains a public outreach component, it is not necessary to attach a second abstract.
g) A timeline of the proposed project;
h) Two letters of recommendation from professors or employers.

Contact addresses

Daniel Grütjen, Mercator – IPC Fellowship Program Coordinator
Telephone: +90 (0)212 292 49 39 ext. 1403

Yasemin Berrak Tuna, Mercator – IPC Fellowship Program Assistant
Telephone: +90 (0)212 292 49 39 ext. 1418

For more information, please read the program guidelines or visit the official website.

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