Transformation of Muslim World in the 21st Century
International ILEM Summer School was performed under the cooperation of Scientific Studies Society (ILEM) and Prime Ministry of Republic of Turkey, Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB) and Office of Public Diplomacy (KDK) in Bağlarbaşı Campus of Istanbul 29 May University between August 24-30, 2013. The main theme of First International ILEM Summer School was “Transformation of Muslim World in the 21st Century”. The organization was successfully completed in coordination with all partners from the preparation to activation process and 44 scholars from 23 different countries participated in the program.
Along the Summer School, three lectures with 8 hours, two forums, three workshops and social activities was carried out. In the first day of the program, Dr. Savaş Barkçin, the Chief Adviser to the Prime Minister of Turkey, gave the opening speech with the title of “ The Muslim World: Today and Tomorrow”. Dr. Barkçin, in his presentation, firstly talked about the fundamental issues in the Muslim World and the problems stemming from westernization and modernization process. Secondly, through forecasting to the future of Muslim World, Dr. Barkçin tried to make a projection to the participants about what can be done.
Dr. Salman Sayyid from Leeds University of Britain argued the main crises and problems of Muslim World through fundamental structure of global politics in his lecture entitled “Global Politics and Changes in Muslim World”. Dr. Sayyid tried to query Euro-centric academic and political perception and its impact on the Muslim World’s today.
Dr. Abdulwahab al-Affandy from Westminster University of Britain tried to explain tradition and perception of the science in the Islamic World in the course of tradition and revival concepts at the session entitled “Tradition and Revival: The Intellectual Future of Muslim World”. He has shared information about various approaches developed through those concepts.
Deputy Director of IRCICA, Dr. Sadık Ünay in his presentation named Political Economy of the Change in Muslim World discussed dominant economic system in the context of global economic system and influence of global economic policies on the Muslim World. Additionally, Dr. Ünay, made some important observations on economic relations among Muslim countries.
Participants discussed secularization as one of the most important problems of the Muslim World and its influence on policy making process in the Muslim world within the forum titled “Islam- Secularism and Politics after the Arab Revolutions” under the moderation of Cemalettin Haşimi, Coordinator of Public Diplomacy Office. In addition to this, participants had a good opportunity to discuss how secularism process shapes religion-politics relations, and local, regional and global dimensions of the transformation in the Middle East with the Arab revolutions.
Dr. Mehmet Babacan moderated a session in the forum titled Future of the Muslim World: Role of the New Actors in the program. Participants inquired the question of new actors in Islamic World in the light of the realities and experiences of their own countries. From this point, participants tried to find some ways to understand what kind of steps would play important role in the future of Muslim World.
There were three workshops in the program under the titles of “Political Change in Muslim World”, “East- West Relations: Conflicts and Negotiation” and “Intellectual Tradition and Studies in Muslim World”. In these workshops, participants presented their papers and contributed to make deeper discussions on the problems and experiences of the Muslim World from different perspectives.
Besides academic and intellectual lectures and discussions, there were many social programs in the Summer School. Uskudar Tour and visit to historical Topkapi Palace were made in first days of the program. Visit to prominent Suleymaniye Library and Mosque was in the fourth day of the program. Participants joined to Historical Peninsuala Tour in the fifth day of the program.
In the sixth day of the program, Dr. M. Emin Soydaş from Çankırı Karatekin University made a presentation on the Ottoman Music during visit to Yenikapı Mevlevihanesi and participants watched a short concert including examples from traditional Turkish music. In the last day of the program participants enjoyed in Bosphorus Cruise Tour after the closing session.