I am currently a fourth year Ph.D. Candidate at the European University Institute in Florence at the Department of History and Civilization. Focus of my doctoral dissertation is secret services and intelligence activities in the late Ottoman Empire. More specifically I focus on the reign of Sultan Abdulhamid II (1876-1909). Provisional title of my dissertation is “Agents of the Empire: Intelligence Activities during the Hamidian Era with particular reference to the Yildiz Secret Service.”
Before starting Ph.D. at the EUI, I finished my bachelor’s degree in a Dual Diploma Program (DDP); a joint program between Middle East Technical University, Ankara (METU) and State University of New York at Binghamton, Binghamton, NY (SUNY Binghamton). Due to the outline of DDP I spent the freshman and junior years at METU and the rest at SUNY Binghamton. I majored in Global and International Affairs, entailing various courses from the departments of Administration, Political Science, International Relations and History.
In January 2014, I got accepted to the Master’s Program at the University of Bilkent, Ankara to the Department of History. Traditionally divided into three sub-programs I started working at the Ottoman History program under the supervision of Prof. Evgeni Radoslavov Radushev. After perfecting my language skills in reading and understanding Ottoman Turkish paleography and completing courses on Ottoman and European History, I wrote my Master’s dissertation on the development of national consciousness of the Turkish minority in Bulgaria between the two world wars. The dissertation is available to download through this link.
During my time at the University of Bilkent, I also acted as a Teaching Assistant to the History of Civilizations course – a mandatory course for all students of the Faculty of Economics, Administrative and Social Sciences (FEASS). I designed discussion seminars on a weekly basis and for six consecutive semesters.
After successfully defending my Master’s thesis in January 2017, I started to develop an interest in the late Ottoman History, more specifically on the intelligence activities and secret services during the reign of Abdulhamid II. Since September 2017, I am working on this field under the supervision of Prof. Pieter M. Judson and Prof. Giancarlo Casale.