Smart specialization has rapidly acquired a central position in European Union’s regional development strategies. The basic principles of it are highly appealing and to be warmly welcomed.
Children washed ashore on the coasts of Turkey and elsewhere; refugees1 being detained in the hotspots on the Mediterranean islands, waiting either to be returned or their asylum applications to be processed; and thousands of migrants walking thousands of kilometers to reach Germany in the summer of 2015… Those are the costs of fleeing from home, where there is an ongoing civil war for years; fleeing with the hope for a better life, with human rights and dignity. And those are the incidents happened in the 21st century, in front of the eyes of the millions, which turned out to be “one of the largest forced movements of people since the end of World War II” as described by scholars and the media.
”Young people are very critical and motivated, it’s just that they don’t agree with what has been called the politics as usual”, says Political Scientist Ferran Davesa. Davesa has found that there is a big gap between what the youth expect and their experience of the way society actually works.
Professor Kemal Kirişci gave a guest lecture about EU-Turkey relations on the Faculty of Management last week. A lot has changed since Kirişci’s last visit to Tampere 40 years ago. During this time, Kirişci has seen the end of the Cold War with its profound consequences including the rise and fall of European integration and EU-Turkey relations. But what has actually happened? What are the reasons behind these developments?