Columbia Inaugurates Sakıp Sabancı Center for Turkish Studies

On May 4, the University celebrated the launch of the Sakıp Sabancı Center for Turkish Studies.

May 28, 2018

The Sakıp Sabancı Center for Turkish Studies was inaugurated on May 4. Remarks were given by Lee C. Bollinger, President, Columbia University; Güler Sabancı, Founding Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Sabancı University; and Ipek Cem Taha, Director, Columbia Global Centers | Istanbul; followed by a panel discussion on “Human Rights and Hybrid Regimes.”

Here is an excerpt from our Director, Ipek Cem Taha’s remarks:

Columbia's Global Center in Istanbul, which I have led since its inception in 2011, opened my eyes to new possibilities of collaboration, and one of the fruits of that realisation is the Sakip Sabanci Center now established at the University.

Many in this room know of the great legacy of Turkish businessman and philanthropist Sakip Sabanci. We are privileged here to have Sevil Sabancı, the daughter of Sakıp Sabancı, who has initiated this gift with her family. A Board member at Sabanci Holdings and Sabanci University, Sevil is also an international sportswoman and a significant contributor to arts and culture...

Thank you Sevil.  

The Sabancı family name, for generations has been associated with business leadership in Turkey... But perhaps the most important legacies built by this name are also the great institutions dedicated to culture, education, development and philanthropy. Namely the Sabancı Foundation, the Sabancı Museum and of course - the Sabancı University.

I had the great privilege to know the late Sakip Sabanci, as a dear family friend and also as a much loved and respected public figure... He always showed us the truth, without embellishment, but with great empathy...He continues to light our path with his foresight about giving back to education, culture and building global bridges...  

At this particular moment in history, we are especially tempted to highlight our prominence through are differences.  At precisely this juncture, we are inspired to encounter initiatives which are supporting our common goals and our common fate...  Today I think, is such a day. It is a day to be inspired.”

You can read more about the Sakıp Sabancı Center for Turkish Studies launch here.