Colloquium: Societal Influences on Development Aid Preferences – Diverging governmental positions of South Korea and Turkey

13-7On July 13, 2022, the GSPC held a colloquium with our PhD candidate Melis Baydag presenting her paper on the domestic driving forces of diverging development policy positions of South Korea and Turkey. She discussed why and under which conditions development policy preferences of seemingly similar middle-sized countries diverged in the period between 2008 and 2013.
In her presentation, Melis first described the diverging positions of the two countries towards bilateral development assistance. Her research aims to complement existing studies in the literature – which broadly explain the differences in policy positions of these countries by global, middle, or regional power strategies – through a theoretically informed empirical analysis on the role of domestic material interests and/or societal ideas in shaping development aid preferences. She argues in her paper that governmental preferences in development aid are formed in domestic politics prior to systemic influences. Therefore, the variations in governmental positions of South Korea and Turkey stem from differences in material economic interests and value-based societal ideas prevalent in their domestic politics. After explaining the theoretical framework of the paper based on the societal approach to governmental preference formation, Melis went on to analyze both countries comparatively and discussed her empirical findings.
Thank you, Melis, for your great presentation and especially for discussing your ideas with us!