ProjectIDandTFP – ‘The world is bigger than five’: Identity, discourse, and the transformation of Turkey’s foreign policy…

Basic data

‘The world is bigger than five’: Identity, discourse, and the transformation of Turkey’s foreign policy since 2011
01/09/2022 to 31/08/2024
Abstract / short description:
ID&TFP examines Turkey’s foreign policy reorientation during the 2010s and contributes to academic debates on foreign policy
transformation and foreign policy's role in domestic politics. During the Justice and Development Party (AKP)’s first decade in power,
it prioritised Turkey’s European Union (EU) membership and sought to increase Turkey’s influence through soft power instruments.
However, soon after the Arab Spring protests broke out in 2011, the AKP began asserting its ambition to shape the Middle East in its
vision by supporting political actors affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Libya and Syria. It has been portraying Turkey
as the leader of the Muslim world, championing the Palestinian cause, building an international coalition to combat Islamophobia, and
calling for the reform of the international order. ID&TFP seeks to understand (a) why a reorientation was perceived as necessary and
possible by the Turkish decision-makers and (b) the role it has been playing in the AKP governments’ efforts to change the domestic
order in its attempt to extend its religious-nationalist hegemony over Turkish politics. It connects foreign policy and domestic politics
through a focus on identity, and offers to study a wide range of primary sources to understand the articulation of Turkish identity in the
foreign policy discourse and to explain how identity has been instrumentalised in domestic politics. Through the case study, ID&TFP
explores why and how foreign policies transform and how foreign policy is used to establish and stabilise a domestic political order,
which are issues central to foreign policy analysis. ID&TFP also contributes to the literature on discursive policy analysis by providing
a critical explanation of why particular policy discourses become dominant, how they contest the dominant orders, and understanding
of how support for or compliance with certain policies is generated.
foreign policy
European Union
Europäische Union
Middle East
Vorderer Orient

Involved staff


Institute of Political Science
Department of Social Sciences, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences

Local organizational units

Institute of Political Science
Department of Social Sciences
Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences


Brüssel, Belgium

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