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The Centre for Applied Turkey Studies (CATS) analyses political and social developments in Turkey and relations between Turkey and Europe. Its tailored formats and products supply information to relevant political decision-makers and the public in Germany and Europe. CATS also creates confidential venues for informal exchange between important actors.

CATS aims to provide input for shaping long-term relations with Turkey, to contribute to strategy-driven and coherent Turkey policy in the EU and its member states, and to help place the relationship on realis-tic foundations. Turkey is understood as an actor with pronounced regional – and occasionally global – ambitions.

Alongside its own research, CATS will intensify European/Turkish networking in the field and create a shared framework for discussion about the EU’s future relationship with Turkey (CATS network). This will make CATS the hub and curator of an international network of think tanks. CATS will collaborate with European and Turkish think tanks and distribute project funding and scholarships.

CATS research priorities:

  • Turkey’s relationship to Europe and the EU
  • Turkey’s role in the global system conflict
  • Turkey’s positioning in the Middle East and relations with the Islamic world
  • Turkey’s partnerships with emerging powers
  • Social, political and economic developments in Turkey


With its broad foreign policy expertise, SWP is well-placed to ensure that the regional and political con-ditions and dynamics that shape Turkish politics are always taken into consideration.

CATS began work in September 2019, initially focussing on the task of setting up the research division. A conference with European partners in November 2019 will mark the official launch.

The Centre for Applied Turkey Studies (CATS) is funded by Stiftung Mercator and the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Centre for Applied Turkey Studies of SWP coordinates the CATS Network.

SWP Podcast

Günter Seufert, Ilke Toygür
EU-Turkey relations: Between democracy and transactionalism

Following the European Council meeting last week which suggests a dual approach for Turkey-EU relations, William Noah Glucroft talks to Günter Seufert and Ilke Toygür about the most important issues that are confronting the EU-Turkey relations with a special focus on the next steps.


Alan Makovsky, Ilke Toygür
New US President - Boost or Blow for EU's Tricky Ties with Turkey?

Damien McGuinness talks to Alan Makovsky and Ilke Toygür about what a Biden presidency means for EU-Turkey relations. Will it improve that rocky relationship? And what does the US expect from the EU?


SWP Research Papers

Sinem Adar, Günter Seufert
Turkey’s Presidential System after Two and a Half Years

An Overview of Institutions and Politics


Sinem Adar
Eine Neubetrachtung der poli­tischen Einstellungen türkischer Migranten in Deutschland

Analyse des Wahlverhaltens jenseits von »Loyalität gegenüber der Türkei« und »Mangel an demokratischer Kultur«


Working Paper