Is Construction Business in Turkey for People or Against People?

by Sofia


© Sofia Manukyan

When I started writing about the culture of construction in Turkey, my attention was caught by an article about gentrification plans in London. People expressed their opposition to the luxury brought by “development” plans in Camden which according to them was not only a threat to the local culture, but also posed a problem in terms of affordability of the neighbourhood. “The heart of Camden is being ripped out, pubs are being converted to luxury flats no-one can afford, venues are under threat, the market is flogged off to be a casino (and yet more unaffordable flats). Rents are rising … fast”, read the event statement on Facebook. This reminded me of the situation in Istanbul.  (more…)


On Alert –TiSA is around!

by Sofia

In my neighbourhood the atmosphere is festive. And as a neighbour, I am sharing their happiness too. After years of gradual downslide into autocracy, Turkey has recently had elections (more here), where it seems everyone will have some degree of representation, from various political wings to diverse ethnic communities.

After a few days of celebration the new parliament (hopefully without any surprises) will have to face realities left from the previous one. (more…)

Don’t Frack our Human Rights

by Sofia

In March I used the opportunity to speak at Chamber of Environmental Engineers in Istanbul about shale or natural gas, the method with which it is extracted called hydraulic fracturing (fracking) and how it can impact human rights. This topic has become the focus of environmental engineers in Turkey (and hopefully, it will become central topic for all active people there) because shale gas explorations have started in Turkey in times when there is a global opposition to the method of its extraction. (more…)