The Memory and Peace Studies program aims to develop alternative narratives and innovative approaches to address past and present human rights violations and open up new perspectives for peace.
The program conducted pioneer research on enforced disappearances in Turkey in its early years, which resulted in several reports and an original database. Today, we have increasingly diversified our activities along two main axes:
We conduct research, organize workshops and develop digital content in the area of collective memory, dealing with the past and memorialization. We explore the transformation of the memory field in Turkey and its connections with the political sphere, civil society, and cultural scene. Relying on cases from Turkey and other regions of the world, we address the role of memory work in the struggle against impunity and seek to identify best practices for memorialization from the perspective of restorative justice. We also strive to foster youth agency and participation in the debates around Turkey’s past and the struggle for historical justice and accountability.
In our perspective, dealing with the past is articulated within the broader struggle for peace, justice, and democracy. Based on this observation, we carry out activities that support the peaceful resolution of the Kurdish issue, exploring the structural dimensions of the conflict and the prospects for peace. More broadly, we attempt to address peace issues from an inclusive and critical perspective, which articulates different temporalities and spatial scales. We seek to build bridges between stakeholders to promote collective thinking and action on cross-cutting issues such as gender, social inequalities, and racism in Turkey and beyond.
In these two areas, we cooperate with various stakeholders and partners, including young people, academics, civil society organizations, and communities of victims and survivors in Turkey. We also collaborate with transnational networks and civil society organizations active in the areas of peace and memory in the Balkans, Middle East, and beyond.