Schools in the Nexus of Neoliberal Urban Transformation and Education Policy Change

Bayhan Gür S., Caner A.

JOURNAL FOR CRITICAL EDUCATION POLICY STUDIES, vol.15, no.3, pp.145-173, 2017 (ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 15 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.145-173
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: No


Drawing on field research carried out on Istanbul school geography, this paper analyzes the co-constitutive relationship between school spaces and urban transformation in Istanbul, the largest city in Turkey. Following a briefd iscussion of its theoreticalf ramework, the paper describes how relocation of Istanbul inner-city public schools has become far more complicated and entangled with the cultural character of the transformation of education in Turkey and transformation of Istanbul. Revealing the close link between urban policy and education policy in the city, the paper argues that school topography in Istanbul interacts with current urban policies and this interaction facilitates the destabilisation ofpublic schools, creates new hierarchies, and perpetuates the existing nature ofpower relationships. Rather than seeing it as a unidirectional relationship, the paper points to the coconstitutive manner of this interaction and discusses possible implications of the removal of a secular school from its neighbourhood. While existing body of international literature emphasizes the racialised character of the interplay between urban renewal and urban school restructuring, this article introduces into the literature the religion/secularism dimension, which has hitherto not been discussed.