The Rumi Forum presented “Liberalizing Turkish Education: Islam, Secularism and the Future of Democracy” with Dr. Ellen Rosskam.

Insufficient research has been conducted on the extent of the impacts of neo-liberal policies on education in Turkey , and whether such policies have impacted the growth of Islamic fundamentalism, social cohesion, social unrest, and social disparity, all areas of concern to foreign policy makers. New research examines what is known about efforts to reform educational services in Turkey by liberalizing the sector through privatization and commercialization, linkages with Islam, the future of democracy, and the implications for foreign policy.

Ellen Rosskam is a Southeast Europe Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center Southeast Europe Project. She has spent 6 months conducting research and interviews related to changes in Turkey regarding education, Islam, secularism and the future of democracy.

Dr. Rosskam will be publishing a report based on her research on Turkey . Presently she is also a Scholar within the Wilson Center ‘s Division of International Security Studies, analyzing the international security implications in the civil aviation industry post 9/11, based on the findings of a global study she presently heads in 200 countries, of 800,000 civil aviation workers. Dr. Rosskam has worked internationally for the past 17 years as a global development, social protection, social policy, and public health specialist. She has developed social policy recommendations for over 100 countries and is a specialist on Turkey .

Dr. Rosskam has advised government ministers, senior government officials, employers, trade unions, and civil society groups in numerous developing and transitional economies on strategy building to increase social protection and development. She is the author of 52 publications, and published 4 books in the last 2 years, while working in Moldova , China , South Africa , Los Angeles , Boston and Washington , D.C. Her latest book is on the liberalization of education in developing and middle income countries.

Dr. Rosskam lives in Geneva , Switzerland and obtained her doctorate from the University of Lausanne, Switzerland, a Masters Degree in Public Health at the University of California , Los Angeles , and a BA in Third World Development Sociology from the University of California , Berkeley.

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