My academic interests stem from nearly a decade of professional experience in social development and good governance in developing countries where I worked with governmental, non-governmental, and international organisations. I remain engaged in the efforts of several non-governmental organizations working on issues of access to primary education, violence against children, and child labour.
I have a bachelor's degree from Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service and a dual masters degree in development studies and urban planning from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. More recently, I was a visiting fellow at Harvard University's Department of Sociology and Bilkent University's Department of Political Science and Public Administration. At Oxford I've had the privilege of being a Clarendon Scholar and a member of St Antony's College.
I study social policy making processes in middle income countries with a focus on the role of bureaucrats. I am currently conducting the following studies as part of my doctoral research:
- A cross-country macro-comparison to investigate the relationship between bureaucratic quality and social policy outcomes in middle income countries, and to determine whether this relationship is consistent across different social policy areas;
- A historical comparative study of bureaucratic autonomy and its political and organizational determinants in Turkey;
- A comparative analysis of the effects of changes in organizational structure on bureaucrats' involvement in policy making in Turkey;
- A comparative study of social policy diffusion processes with a focus on conditional cash transfer programs in Turkey and Indonesia.
I have also been involved in a number of research projects on access to primary education, child labour, and early childhood development.