European Institute of Istanbul Bilgi University has a Vacancy for a Post-Doc Researcher

Department: European Institute of Istanbul Bilgi University

Length and Duration of Contract:

  • 01 January 2019 – 31 December 2023
  • part-time (50 % workload)
  • The contract will be initially for one year, and can be renewed.

Salary: The monthly salary for the part-time Post-Doc position is between Gross 3,000 Euro and Gross 3,600 Euro

Director of Project: Prof. Dr. Ayhan Kaya

Title of ProjectNativism, Islamophobism and Islamism in the Age of Populism: Culturalization and Religionization of What is Social, Economic and Political in Europe

Job Description: The research aims to analyse the current political, social, and economic context of the European Union, which is hit by two fundamental crises, namely the global financial crisis and the refugee crisis, which have together led to the escalation of fear and prejudice among some segments of the European public vis-à-vis others who are ethno-culturally and religiously different. The main research question posed in this study is as follows: How, and why, do some European citizens generate a populist and Islamophobist discourse to express their discontent regarding the current social, economic and political state of their national and European context, while some members of migrant origin communities with a Muslim background generate an essentialist and radical form of an Islamist discourse in the same societies? In such a manner, the research is ground-breaking as it attempts to analyse for the first time two sides of the same coin to better understand the sources of discontent of populist native groups on the one hand, and radical young Muslims with migration background on the other hand. So far, social scientists have studied these groups separately from more culturalist, civilizational and religious perspectives. The main strength and novelty of this ground-breaking study is to understand and explain the malaise of both ‘native’ and ‘immigrant origin’ youth simultaneously through a scientific method by de-culturalizing and de-religionizing what is socio-economic, political and psychological in origin. So far, existing studies have focused on one or the other of these two phenomena, while this study will study them together for the first time. The study shall understand and explain the relationship between Islamophobic extremism and Islamic extremism in Germany, France, Belgium and the Netherlands among the native youth populations, and Turkish and Moroccan-origin youngsters.

This ERC Advanced Research will employ a half-time post-doc researcher, a Social Psychologist, based in Istanbul with an expertise on youth, Islamophobia, populism, antisemitism and radicalization. The social psychologist will be based in Istanbul, and will from time to time travel for short periods to the other countries (Germany, France, Belgium, the Netherlands) included in the research as well as to Morocco for a few workshops during the entire research project. Throughout the whole project, the PI will work together with a full-time post doc researcher (political scientist) and a part-time post-doc researcher (social psychologist, or psychologist) in Istanbul to discuss about the conduct of the research from an interdisciplinary perspective. The Social psychologist is expected to bring a psychological perspective to the research in terms of the inclusion of an extensive literature review on radicalization of youth from a Psychology and Social Psychology perspective, as well as of the preparation of interview questions and analysis of in-depth interviews to be conducted in four countries (Germany, France, Belgium and the Netherlands). The applicant will also be expected to disseminate the findings of the research internationally by means of conference papers, peer-review articles, social media posts, media appearances, and other relevant channels. 

Place of Work: Istanbul Bilgi University, SantralIstanbul Campus


  1. Essential
  • PhD in Psychology or Social Psychology
  • Expertise on youth radicalization
  • strong publication track record commensurable with a starting academic career
  • citizenship of Turkey, or an EU country, and ability to travel
  • strong organizational skills
  • strong communication skills


  1. Desirable
  • previous experience in youth studies and working in international teams
  • ability to use NVIVO other relevant computer skills


  • Proficiency in English is required.
  • Other languages such as German, French, Dutch will be an important asset.

Contact details: For more information please contact Didem Balatlıoğulları

Deadline:  Closing date for applications is 15 October 2018.

How to Apply:  Via electronic mail to Didem Balatlıoğulları (

To be included:

  • a letter of intent
  • a detailed CV
  • two or three of the applicant’s most relevant academic publications
  • three academic references with contact details

Selection: those who are shortlisted will be invited for an interview. The final decision will be made until the beginning of November.