About Us

Columbia Global Centers | Istanbul serves as a hub for Columbia programs and initiatives relevant to Turkey and the region. The Center aims to contribute to the academic and research environment of Turkey across a variety of fields, while also allowing members of the Columbia community to increase their knowledge and explore academic opportunities within Turkey. The Center works in collaboration with local universities, non-governmental organizations and public institutions to design cross-cutting, innovative programs and partnerships with different Schools, Centers and Institutes within Columbia. Ongoing events, lectures and seminars hosted by the Center also act towards building a lively and engaged community of local and international alumni, students and faculty.

Columbia Global Centers | Istanbul was launched in November 2011 and became fully operational in January 2012. The Center is governed by a Board of Directors comprised of Columbia University senior administrators, and receives guidance from a University-wide Faculty Steering Committee and the Office of Columbia Global Centers. An Advisory Board composed of prominent academics, public figures and business leaders also provides oversight, ongoing leadership and counsel regarding the Center’s activities. 

A Look at Columbia Global Centers | Turkey with Center director Ipek Cem Taha
Director's Message

Columbia Global Centers | Istanbul has been an important hub for connecting Columbia University to the vast intellectual and cultural resources of Istanbul, Turkey and the region. Launched in 2011 and operational since 2012, the Istanbul Center has established itself as a reputable and trusted partner both for Columbia campus counterparts, and for local, national, and regional collaborators.

Since our inception, we have embarked on a wide range of programs, including burning issues of our times. From refugee health to gender equality; entrepreneurship to arts and culture; politics of memory to archaeology, civil society to sustainability, we have covered much ground.

With the 2013 addition of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation’s city laboratory, Studio-X, to our operations, we have been able to extend our community further, reaching architects, makers, curators and the creative segments of society at large, linking further with multifaceted issues relating to Istanbul and other global cities.

In 2016, we are also excited to inaugurate the Sakıp Sabancı Chair and Center at Columbia University, which will open new horizons to scholars and students aspiring to deepen their knowledge and understanding of Turkey and our region. We strongly believe that the Sakıp Sabancı Chair on Turkish Studies will prove to be an invaluable addition to Columbia campus and to our work in Istanbul.

Our world needs dialogue and collaboration, perhaps more than any other time in history that we know of. In actuality, all the requirements for cooperation, mutual understanding and globally connected initiatives are available in our advanced state of communication.

Today, we need that spirit of exploration and deep study around key issues in a connected manner, alongside the will and discipline to listen to the other. I believe and hope that the Columbia Global Centers as a network, and the Istanbul Center, as a key node, are honoring that global and human spirit.

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required
Alumnus of Columbia University? *
Email Format