TİKA: development assistances as a case of implementing soft power in Turkish foreign policy
Erkan, Hakan Sezgin (2016) TİKA: development assistances as a case of implementing soft power in Turkish foreign policy. [Thesis]
The 21st century marks an era of major changes in the Turkish foreign policy with the introduction of two new terms to the political literature: soft power and development assistance. Both terms gained popularity in the world politics after the Cold War, as states started to incorporate soft power and development assistance actively to the practices in relation to their foreign policies. Following the end of the Cold War, the world politics was gradually shaped around the term development assistance. For states, being a development assistance provider became a major issue in the international arena. Although it was not until 1960s that states systematically adopted the idea of being donor countries for development assistance, such assistance became quite popular after the Cold War Era. During that period, various development agencies were founded or some already existent institutions were transformed into providers of development assistance. In that, development assistance was generally benefited by states in implementing their soft power within the scope of their foreign policies. Looking to a specific case in this respect, TIKA – the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency – has gradually become the main provider of development assistance to various countries as a part of the Turkish foreign policy. This dissertation is focused on comprehending the role of TIKA in changing the Turkish foreign policy on the basis of the concept of soft power. Such an analysis is made possible through scrutinizing current geopolitical theories and understanding the possible connection of such theories to realist and constructivist theories. As a matter of fact, the frame of the dissertation is essentially formed on the basis of an in-depth analysis of basic theories on geopolitics and their implications in realist and constructivist theories of international relations. The focal point will dwell on the soft power in the Turkish foreign policy that has been grabbing attention since 2000s. Furthermore, development assistance provided so far by TIKA for various countries will be under scrutiny as a case study in relation to the implementation of soft power.
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