Hrant Dink Foundation, through the projects implemented under Turkey-Armenia Programme, makes efforts to build closer ties between the peoples of the two neighbouring countries. Turkey-Armenia Fellowship Scheme, initiated for this purpose within the framework of the programme Support to the Armenia-Turkey Normalisation Process financed by the European Union, aims to foster cross-border affiliation and cooperation of professionals from the two neighbouring countries, while strengthening the ties between these two cultures, and thus enhancing the sense of multi-culturalism. 

‘Multi-culturalism’ as one of the most important terms for those who work on the relations between different societies, indeed, points out to a ‘form of coexistence’ after living together or side-by-side for a long time despite the diversities within and between each other. The societies of Turkey and Armenia, which could have sustained a broad relationship on the basis of multiculturalism with their cultural proximity and transitivity, have fallen apart due to historical and recent political issues. Nareg Seferian, as a scholar, analyzes today’s narratives in these two societies towards each other. What distinguishes Nareg the most from his counterparts in the field of social sciences is his experience in number of societies throughout his life. From Brazil to India, Armenia to the US and Austria, Nareg carries the sense of belonging to different societies and cultures, and with Fellowship Scheme, he took the chance to analyze Turkey and its social dynamics closely.

Nareg has a very impressive personal background. He was born and raised in New Delhi, India. He began his higher education at Yerevan State University in Armenia with studies in political science, later receiving a bachelor’s degree in classical liberal arts from St. John’s College in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in the United States. He then did graduate studies in international affairs at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. Nareg served on the faculty at the American University of Armenia from 2013 to 2016. As part of the Turkey-Armenia Fellowship Scheme, since November 2016, he has been working at Istanbul Policy Center (Sabanci University) as a fellow researcher.

For Nareg, being in Turkey in such a period charged with many political developments is a unique experience for someone working in the field of political science. Cana Tülüş, Research and Administrative Affairs Coordinator at IPC, stresses that their joint work with their fellow is at least important for their institution as it is for Nareg. According to Tülüş, working with colleagues with different social backgrounds enriches the institutions by opening the gates of cultural diversity. That’s why Cana Tülüş believes that being part of Turkey-Armenia Fellowship Scheme as a Host Organisation is very prestigious for their institution.

Nareg Seferian and Cana Tülüş shared their experiences about the Turkey-Armenia Fellowship Scheme as well as their suggestions for future fellows and host organisations.

For more detailed information about the Fellowship Scheme, please click here.

 ‘This activity takes place within the framework of the Support to the Armenia-Turkey Normalisation Process programme, funded by the European Union’