All the President’s Men: Institutions and key players in Erdogan’s Turkey

This is a hybrid event

Over the past two decades, the Turkish state has transformed from an imperfect parliamentary system to a highly centralized presidential regime. State institutions are increasingly political and informal in their day-to-day operation, and unusually susceptible to the influence of business groups, religious networks, regional cliques and organized crime. In theory, the “Erdogan System” pits these networks against each other to compete in the achievement of government objectives. In practice, this leans the Turkish state into a top-heavy pattern of megaprojects, geopolitical brinkmanship and export promotion, all of which externalizes the Turkish state. While Turkey’s footprint across the map widens, its citizens now see a precipitous decline in the quality of their lives. As Turkey nears elections scheduled for 2023, a field of opposition politicians are now campaigning on populist platforms and systemic change. This talk will reflect on how the Erdogan system is evolving, and where it might lead beyond 2023.