The Debt and Financialization Research Network (DE-FIRE), a project supported by the Research Institute on Turkey (RIT), has kicked off its activities in Spring 2015. In this note, we would like to share information about our inaugural events and upcoming activities.
At a time when the repercussions of debt and financialization are becoming all the more visible, DE-FIRE has been initiated by Ümit Akçay, Bert Azizoğlu, Yetkin Borlu, Ali Rıza Güngen and Elif Karaçimen in April 2015 in order to bring together researchers focusing on these topics, develop cooperation opportunities and open up channels of mutual enhancement between researchers and the public.
Members of DE-FIRE have recently published a series of op-ed articles in the Sunday Edition of the Turkish newspaper BirGun to initiate a more comprehensive debate on issue of debt and financialization. The first op-ed of this series is authored by Ümit Akçay and Bert Azizoğlu and outlines the historical evolution and contemporary repercussions of indebtedness and financialization. Ali Rıza Güngen’s essay concentrates on financial inclusion, which is one of the key component of financialization in public policy. In another essay, Yetkin Borlu discusses findings from his field research on the financialization in the agricultural sector of Turkey. Finally, Özlem Çelik and Elif Karaçimen explore the interdependencies between the finance and real estate sectors in Turkey and the role of construction sector in capital accumulation process of Turkey.
On April 24-26, DE-FIRE held a panel discussion at the Historical Materialism Conference in New York to further contemplate on the issues initially addressed in the op-ed pieces published in BirGün. You can find the video recordings of the panel here. We would like to draw special attention to the discussion and Q&A section at the end of the panel.
In the near future, we would like to bring together researchers who are interested in debt and financialization and enable a healthy exchange of information and ideas. We would like to commonize and further develop existing project ideas through this communication channel.