Kivanc Atak studied Political Science and International Relations at Bogazici University, Istanbul. He received his Master’s degree in Political Science at Central European University, Budapest. In 2009, he enrolled in the PhD program in the Department of Political and Social Sciences at the European University Institute, Florence. In December 2013, he defended his dissertation titled “Police, Protest and Democracy in Turkey: From Gazi to Gezi” under the supervision of Prof. Donatella della Porta. In his thesis, Atak investigated the relationship between the policing ideas and practices, and the social reality of protests under democratization in Turkey. Based on quantitative and qualitative methods of analysis, the findings of his doctoral research suggested that patterns of protest and patterns of policing evolve in interaction with each other, yet this interaction is politically contingent on how contentious “threats” are fabricated in state discourse, particularly in the ideas that shape and regulate policing practices. In this sense, democratization generated certain positive effects on policing as well as protests in Turkey, but far from being a linear path this also embedded a concomitant process of de-democratization. Currently, Kivanc Atak is employed in the research team of the ERC project “Mobilizing for Democracy” coordinated by Prof. Della Porta. In broad terms, Atak has been working in the field of political sociology and comparative politics. More specifically, he is interested in social movement studies, the politics of policing and state control over public dissent, theories of the state and critical theory. He has forthcoming publications in internationally edited volumes, and his recent short article on the June’13 uprisings in Turkey is published in French in La Revue Internationale et Stratégique.
Research interests : protest policing, politics of the police, state repression, political change