stadt.land.plus Türkiye is a project of the Politikfabrik e.V. in cooperation with the youth NGO Toplum Gönüllüleri Vakfı (TOG) in Turkey and supported by the Stiftung Mercator in Essen.
„All Turkish men wear moustaches, all Germans are against an EU-membership of Turkey – these and similar prejudices can be tested for their validity and reality by young people on the unique journey stadt.land.plus Türkiye / gez.gör.yaz Deutschland. And of course, in both countries there are many more exciting things to be discovered! The project stadt.land.plus – taking place online as well as offline – makes an important contribution to improving the respective understanding of the two countries and societies by offering new images and impressions. I wish all participants a lot of fun and look forward to the articles and posts on the project website, which I will closely follow.” Cem Özdemir, Bündnis 90/ DIE GRÜNEN
“Travelling educates and reduces prejudices. I gladly support the project “stadt.land.plus Türkiye”, because it gives young German people the opportunity to discover the Turkish culture in an unconventional and fascinating way. Also young people from Turkey are going to get to know Germany from a completely different perspective during their stay here. This is a political and educational trip that promotes the dialogue and cultural exchange between Germany and Turkey. I’m looking forward to the travel reports of the young people and I am excited about their experiences in Turkey.” Bilkay Öney, SPD
Own experiences shape us more than theory ever could. Reading cookbooks will never enable you to experience different culinary cultures – one has to taste them. To understand other country’s zest for life, reading a tour guide will only help to a certain extent. Travelling, walking through countryside, gazing at buildings, experiencing sun and rain and most importantly meeting different people: how they walk, talk and laugh. Nothing leaves as big an impression as personal encounters. Communication, openness, curiosity and readiness to understand one another: “Stadt.Land.Plus Türkiye” offers a superb prerequisite for a German-Turkish exchange – I am therefore delighted to support this project. Ruprecht Polenz, CDU
15 young Germans, 5 teams, 2 weeks and some impressive 815.000 square meters to be discovered – stadt.land.plus is entering into a new round!
Our destination this time: Turkey. Much has been discussed and written recently about Europe’s Eastern neighbour, for example about the potential entry of Turkey into the EU, about its impressive economic growth rates, about immigration and integration policy. If these are not the headlines dominating the German image of Turkey, travel agencies outbid each other with special offers for all-inclusive holidays at the Turkish Riviera. And the truth? As always, lies somewhere in between these clichés.
What is happening?
This summer, we and our partners will send you onto an unconventional and exciting trip that won’t have anything to do with either all-inclusive holidays or rusty stereotypes. What you can expect instead? One of Europe’s most vibrant regions and a country full of exciting culture, fascinating history and unique people. Equipped with laptops, smartphones and lots of curiosity you will report and share your encounters, impressions and experiences with a large interested German public and take all your followers back home with you onto this journey. Splitted into five teams, you will take different routes through the country and try to answer questions and fulfil tasks given to you daily by the online community. On location, scouts and locals will support you and show you Turkey’s most exceptional facets, far away from tourist centres and popular sights. Via the project blog, photos and videos you will keep us updated and face the daily user voting.
This innovative way of travel journalism is not only exciting and very entertaining – it helps to test our existing picture of Turkey for its validity and – if necessary – does away with prejudices and lame clichés. stadt.land.plus Türkiye is a politically educational journey 2.0, interactive and full of interesting insights into a country on the border between Europe and Asia.
With stadt.land.plus Türkiye, the Politikfabrik advances the successful concept of previous eu_checker and stadt.land.plus projects that in the past have generated up to 2.5 million clicks on the project websites. New this time: also a group of young Turks will go on a two week trip to Germany and share their adventure with the Turkish online community. To find information about gez.gör.yaz Deutschland, visit the project website. In this way, we – together with our Turkish partner organisation TOG – take the cultural exchange between Germany and Turkey to a new level.
We believe that only the encounter with the people and everyday life of a country enables true access to it. stadt.land.plus Türkiye is supposed to open up an opportunity for interested young people to discover Turkey in a profoundly new way, not as tourists via the conventional routes, but by getting in touch with the country, its singularities and inhabitants.
This concept has already proven to be successful and exciting in 2007 and 2008 when young Germans travelled to the new EU-members Romania and Bulgaria as well as the EU’s Eastern neighbour Ukraine. Our teams immersed for two weeks into the culture and everyday life of Romanians, Bulgarians and Ukrainians and shared their experiences with tens of thousands of interested online followers back home. The result was a new and fresh perspective on these three countries, on their unique facets and inhabitants.
With stadt.land.plus Türkiye this adventure enters into a new phase and leads our participants into one of Europe’s most exciting regions. And again, the online community will be actively engaged by determining the next routes and destinations, by assigning our teams daily tasks or sending them questions to answer for them. Of course, each of our teams will have to face a daily voting.
How To Apply
As was the case already with eu_checker Romania and Bulgaria and stadt.land.plus Ukraine, our 15 participants will be chosen together with the online community. An application is open to everyone who is between 18 and 30 years old and curious about Turkey.
Apart from that, you should apply if you:
- are interested in different countries and their respective cultures,
- believe in the importance of cross-cultural and cross-national understanding and would like to play an active part in advancing such understanding
- feel at home in the web 2.0 and are skilled in surfing your way through it
- already have some experience in writing, maybe through your own blog
- are able to present us your personal motivation creatively and convincingly in a short video.
And don’t forget: during your trip you will travel in teams of three. So you should definitely be a team player!
The application procedure is to be carried out through the online mask on this website. By using the Facebook like-button the online community takes part in the selection procedure of the candidates. Everyone has only one vote per person to avoid cumulative voting but it is possible to vote for several candidates.
A qualified jury will make the final decision about the formation of the group. Once you made it through the application procedure successfully , there will be a one-time fee of 50 €. Furthermore it is important that you have a travel insurance. All travel costs and pocket money will be paid by the Politikfabrik. The journey itself is an interactive road trip on which you will be travelling around mostly by bus and train.
- Application phase: 01.06.11 – 30.06.11
- Preparation Workshop: 20.07.11 – 31.07.11
- Time of Journey: 28.08.11 -10.09.11
- Closing Workshop: 19.11.11 – 20.11.11