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GİF İlter Türkmen Diplomacy Seminars

February 11-14, 2024.

Application Deadline: January 15, 2024, 23:59 (Turkey Time)

The GRF İlter Türkmen Diplomacy Seminars aim to bring together students who are in the final year of their undergraduate studies or currently pursuing a master’s degree. Serving as a forum for debating and scrutinizing global issues in the field of diplomacy, this program provides students with the opportunity to engage with both academic scholars and experienced practitioners. Participants are prompted, through predefined thematic topics, to direct their attention towards contemporary as well as enduring global challenges. This encourages them to adopt a comprehensive outlook on the global agenda, understand the differences between academic discourse and practical application through the insights of experts, and analyze long-term structural changes related to societal and governmental structures. Above all, this program aims to nurture a sense of fellowship within the group and encourage participants to engage with their peers and exchange ideas.

Details of the previous GRF İlter Türkmen Diplomacy Seminars program can be found here.

Program Scope

The GRF İlter Türkmen Diplomacy Seminars is open to the students in their final year of undergraduate studies or pursuing a master’s degree. The program will span four days in Istanbul, consisting of a series of seminars and simulation exercises.

The first part of the program includes a series of seminars covering various themes such as regional developments, global power competition, international organizations and multilateral diplomacy. Under these overarching themes, expert diplomats and academics will delve into numerous sub-topics ranging from the European Union to the Middle East, and from climate diplomacy to NATO. Each seminar session includes an academic and a former diplomat as speakers. Through these interactions, students can gain access to insights that encompass real-world experience and research-based understanding. Additionally, it stands as a guide for those who are in the process of building their career paths by facilitating the transfer of valuable information.

In the second part of the program, participants will engage in a negotiation simulation on EU-Turkey relations organized in cooperation with the Brussels-based think tank IPLI Foundation. Participants will come together in mixed groups to analyze the scenarios and possible crisis situations presented within the framework of the assigned roles and conduct a negotiation process by taking into account the interests, needs and different perspectives of the parties. The aim of the program is to enable the participants to understand the complexity of European Union decision-making processes and to develop important skills such as communication, compromise, critical thinking and teamwork.

Upon successful completion of the program, participants will be awarded a certificate of achievement. Moreover, if they choose to apply for GRF Community Programs (Young Academics and  Young Professionals) or for internship opportunities or job positions at GRF in the future, their applications will be given merit priority.

Program Criteria

  • To be a senior undergraduate or master’s degree student in International Relations, Political Science, or other related departments at universities
  • To have an interest in international relations, foreign policy, security, migration, climate change, etc
  • To maintain a GPA of at least 3.00/4.00 (Those who have just started their master’s degree can specify their undergraduate GPA).

Required Documents

The application form must be completed and the documents requested below must be uploaded to the relevant sections of the form.

  • CV (Extracurricular activities, clubs/organizations of which you are a member, experience abroad and certificate programs completed should be included)
  • Very good command of English (if available, language certificates or similar documents should be attached)
  • Academic Transcript
  • A short video (max. 5 mins, in English) or a motivation letter (max. 2 pages, in English) answering the following questions:

    Why do you want to attend GRF Diplomacy Seminars? What are your expectations from the program? (~2 mins / ~1 page)

    Evaluate by choosing one of the following questions (~3 mins / ~1 page):
  • What are the obstacles to collective solutions to the climate crisis, and how can they be tackled?
  • How do economic, humanitarian and new technological developments contribute to the evolution of the concept of ’security’ in the contemporary global landscape? You can focus on one region and a specific area to briefly address.
  • Considering the current state and potential future of Turkey - EU relations, what are some innovative approaches and areas of action for advancing relations and creating a sustainable and strong cooperation environment?
  • Reference Letter (Recommended, not mandatory)

NOTE: The seminars will be held physically in Istanbul, and domestic round-trip tickets, accommodation, and transportation costs for participants from outside Istanbul will be covered by GRF.

Application Process

  • Applications are open and will run until Monday, 15th January, 2024 (23:59 Turkey Time). Applications submitted after this time will not be considered.
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.
  • Candidates may be contacted for short interviews when appropriate.

In case of further questions, please contact

To view the program details, please click here.