FEUTURE comprises six thematic dimensions of EU-Turkey relations, namely, politics, economics, security, energy, migration, and identity that structure FEUTURE’s research across four levels of analysis: the EU, Turkey, the neighbourhood and the global scene.

The political dimension engages with Turkey’s overall political performance in its quest for EU membership taking into account political change (government, leadership and ideology), progress and stagnation in Turkey’s democratization along with the shifting trends in public opinion.

The economics dimension focuses on the direction, magnitude and quality of economic ties between the EU and Turkey, as well as between Turkey and the neighbourhood and the global scene (notably the US and the BRICS countries-Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa), as well as the implications of major political economy questions including Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Eurasian Customs Union (EACU) on the future of EU-Turkey economic relations.

The security dimension analyzes the security dynamics of EU-Turkey relations in the context of the Cyprus conflict, the Eastern Neighbourhood and the Caucasus, the Middle East such as Iran, Syria and Iraq (including the Kurdish question), and the global level, e.g. the US, China and Russia. Moreover, Turkey’s membership of NATO and Turkish ambitions for becoming an independent regional power affect its security ties with the EU.

The energy dimension focuses on Turkey’s key role as an energy hub for Europe at the heart of the Southern Corridor which also contributes to the EU’s energy security. Besides, the harmonisation of Turkish energy/climate policies with the EU acquis, energy relations with Russia, energy cooperation in the Eastern Mediterranean, and broader global trends affecting energy markets and their implications for EU-Turkey relations will be under scrutiny. 

The migration dimension assesses the evolution of Turkish and EU asylum policies and their impact on EU-Turkey relations in a broader sense focusing on skilled migration flows between Turkey and the EU and irregular transit migration from Turkey to the EU.

The identity dimension evaluates the construction of Turkish and European identities taking into account the role of key issues including religion, secularism and nationalism with a comprehensive time frame starting from the late Ottoman modernisation and early Republican period, up until the Cold-War and the post-Cold War period.

The elaboration and exploration phases (Phases 1 and 2) of the project culminate in an extrapolation phase in FEUTURE integrates new knowledge and tests the implocations of three ideal-type future scenarios for EU-Turkey relations: conflict (growing estrangement), cooperation (engagement without accession) and convergence (Turkey’s EU membership e.g. with internal differentiation).

We engage in a trans-disciplinary exchange within an elite survey and with the knowledge-user community from the four levels of analysis exploiting the full range of virtual and social media as well as traditional means. FEUTURE’s work plan guarantees the coherence of its research approach by streamlining work in one conceptual, one synthesis, two organisational and six thematic work packages. Joint workpackage meetings and three FEUTURE conferences assure intensive horizontal exchange. FEUTURE will achieve academic, policy relevant and structural impact beyond the project’s lifecycle.

The consortium will be lead by Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Wessels (University of Cologne) as coordinator and Dr. Nathalie Tocci (Istituto Affari Internazionali), as scientific coordinator, with Dr. Funda Tekin (University of Cologne) as project director.

The kick-off conference was held on 26-27 May 2016, hosted by Istanbul Bilgi University.


Funding: European Union-Horizon 2020 


Main Tasks within FEUTURE

Work Package Leader: 

WP7   “Identity and Culture Drivers” (Assoc. Prof. Dr. Bahar Rumelili)

Contribution to: 

WP1   “Conceptual and Analytical Toolkit” 

WP5   “Energy and Climate Drivers”

WP8   “Synthesis of Research Findings and Policy Recommendations”

WP9   “Dissemination and Outreach”

WP10 “Overall Project Coordination and Management”


Start/End: 2016-2019


Project Website: http://feuture.eu