Professor Ayhan Kaya, faculty member of Istanbul Bilgi University’s International Relations Department and Director of the European Union Institute has been awarded an Advanced Grant by the European Research Council (ERC), one of the most prestigious research institutions of Europe. He was given the award for his project entitled, “Nativism, Islamophobism and Islamism in the Age of Populism: Culturalisation and Religionisation of what is Social, Economic and Political in Europe”.
The ERC awards Advanced Grants for scientists who perform high-level research at a global scale. Professor Ayhan Kaya’s project is the first social sciences project at a Turkish university to receive an Advanced Grant from ERC.
The main focus of Professor Kaya’s research is to study how and why some European citizens generate a populist and Islamophobist discourse to express their discontent with the current social, economic, and political state of their national and European contexts, while some members of migrant-origin communities with Muslim background generate an essentialist and radical form of Islamist discourse within the same societies.
The ERC will support the project for 5 years with a grant over €2 million.The field research will be comprised of four migrant receiving countries: Germany, France, Belgium, and the Netherlands, and two migrant sending countries: Turkey and Morocco.