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Ellen Kollender
Ellen Kollender
2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellow

Ellen Kollender is a post-doctoral researcher focusing on educational inequalities in immigration societies, especially on how dynamics of racism and neoliberalism impact social justice and equity in urban school settings. Her work also includes the critical examination of the relationship between public schools, parents, and civil society organizations.

Kollender holds a PhD in Humanities and a degree in Political Science. After having received a PhD scholarship from the Hans-Böckler-Foundation, she worked as a research associate and lecturer at the Department for Intercultural and Comparative Education at the Helmut Schmidt University in Hamburg. In her doctoral project she explored processes of social exclusion of Muslim and “immigrant” families against the backdrop of a revitalized nationalism and neoliberal political reforms in Germany. Within the framework of various research projects and publications, she evaluated and developed approaches for an anti-racist teacher education and inclusive school transformation. She also provided trainings and counseling on diversity strategies for civil and state actors such as the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees. In 2016, she initiated a project aiming to empower communities in the Berlin districts of Kreuzberg and Neukölln in addressing institutional discrimination in schools and in working on a common social justice policy. In addition, she has worked as a seminar leader in political adult education in Hamburg and Istanbul.

Project: “Voices of civil society actors on inclusive education in times of forced migration: Case studies in Germany and Turkey”

Against the backdrop of the increasing number of (unaccompanied) children and adolescents seeking shelter in Turkey and Germany in recent years, this research project aims to take a closer look at the roles and strategies of civil society actors in fostering processes of an inclusive education in urban school settings. Through empirical case studies in Istanbul and Berlin, the research project explores actors’ approaches and activities in the field of (forced) migration and education and how these are intertwined with current political dynamics in this field, societal debates about “refugees,” and neoliberal educational reforms in the two countries. By examining the work of civil society actors and their structural constraints and interdependencies, an understanding of factors impeding an inclusive education should be deepened. The research project also focuses on the actors’ visions, programs, and strategies to correct exclusionary practices in education and promote social justice in the two school systems. For this purpose, civil society actors from both countries will be brought into a closer exchange to discuss and identify approaches that can inform and inspire the political and pedagogical debate about necessary reforms and attitudes to (better) meet the needs of all learners in Germany and Turkey.

Long-Term Exclusionary Effects of COVID-19 for Refugee Children in the German and Turkish Education Systems: A Comparative Perspective

2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellow Ellen Kollender and 2018/19 Mercator-IPC Fellow Maissam Nimer’s policy brief “Long-Term Exclusionary Effects of COVID-19 for Refugee Children in the German and Turkish Education Systems: A Comparative Perspective” was published in July 2020.

Click here to download the document.

Inclusive Education in Times of Forced Migration and COVID-19

The IPC-Sabancı University-Stiftung Mercator Inititative organized the webinar “Exploring Intersectionality – Building Solidarity across EU-Turkey Borders: Inclusive Education in Times of Forced Migration and COVID-19” on November 11-12. The conference was convened by Mercator-IPC Fellows Ellen Kollender and Joanna Krzeminska in collaboration with the Migration Research Center at Koç University (Mirekoç) in Istanbul and the Feminist Autonomous Center for Research in Athens.

Please click here to watch the Panel 1.

Please click here to watch the Panel 2.

Please click here to watch the Panel 3.

Please click here to watch the Panel 4.

Please click here for detailed information.

Şehrimize Emanet Çocuklar

2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellow Ellen Kollender's interview on the difficulties of refugee children in education was published by Ayşe Banu Tuna in İST Dergi on November 28,2020.  Please click here to read the interview.

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Die Neoliberale Schule

2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellow Ellen Kollender's opinion "Die Neoliberale Schule" was published in die ZEIT on July 19, 2020.  Please click here to read the opinion.

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Welcoming of the 2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellows

We welcome our 2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellows, Andrea Weiss, Sinan Erensü, Ellen Kollender, Akgün İlhan, and Gökçe Uysal.

Andrea Weiss | Baku-Tbilisi-Kars Railroad: Geopolitical Imagery and Turkey’s Role in the EU’s Europe-Asia Connectivity

Sinan Erensü | When Locals Generate: Limits and Potentials of Energy Cooperatives for a Democratic Energy Transition

Ellen Kollender | Voices of Civil Society Actors on Inclusive Education in Times of Forced Migration: Case Studies in Germany and Turkey

Akgün İlhan | Tracing Possibilities of Urban Water Demand Management in the Climate Change Age in Turkey: Deriving Lessons from Istanbul and Berlin

Gökçe Uysal | Refugees’ Integration into the Labor Market: What Can Turkey and Germany Learn from Each Other?

The Welcoming of the 2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellows

The Welcoming of the 2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellows was held on October 21, 2019 at Soho Istanbul.  The event began with welcoming remarks by Fuat Keyman, followed by remarks from Michael Schwarz, Senem Aydın-Düzgit, Aslı Aydıntaşbaş, Atila Eralp, and Michael Thumann. The welcoming remarks were followed by a movie screening that introduced the 2019/20 Mercator-IPC Fellows Akgün İlhan, Andrea Weiss, Ellen Kollender, Gökçe Uysal, and Sinan Erensü.