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Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey

Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey
Türkiye Bilimsel ve Teknolojik Araştırma Kurumu, TÜBİTAK
Agency overview
Jurisdiction Turkey
Headquarters Ankara

The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (Turkish: Türkiye Bilimsel ve Teknolojik Araştırma Kurumu, TÜBİTAK) is a national agency of Turkey whose stated goal is to develop "science, technology and innovation" (STI) policies, support and conduct research and development, and to "play a leading role in the creation of a science and technology culture" in the country. TÜBİTAK was founded in 1963 as an autonomous public institution, governed by a Science Board.

TÜBİTAK develops scientific and technological policies and manages R&D institutes, carrying on research, technology and development studies in line with "national priorities". TÜBİTAK also acts as an advisory agency to the Turkish government and acts as the secretariat of the Supreme Council for Science and Technology, the highest science and technology policymaking body in Turkey. Through monitoring and evaluating national and worldwide STI policies and by performing or commissioning research on policy making formulation methods, TÜBİTAK prepares STI policy proposals and carries out studies.

In recent years, TÜBİTAK, founded as an apolitical institution, has been criticised for succumbing to political pressures put on it by the ruling conservative Justice and Development Party (AKP),[1] and subsequently, for its refusal to fund evolutionary biology researches.[2]


  • History 1
  • Activities 2
  • Awards 3
  • Funds and Scholarships 4
  • Products & Projects 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


TÜBİTAK was established by President Cemal Gürsel, who first formed a scientific council to guide the Ministry of Defense (in parallel to a separate scientific law council to write the new constitution of the Turkish Republic) in 1960 and later ordered the foundation of the broader Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey as the extended continuation of his MoD Scientific Council with the primary advisory duty of providing guidance to the government's plans and policies.

Subsequently, the bill "278" passed on July 24, 1963, in the new era of planned economy subsequent to the first five-year development plan of the country, set the official record for the Council's presence and duties. Cahit Arf, who was appointed by Gursel as the founding director and whose leading foundation work was assisted by a group of scientists including Prof. Erdal İnönü,[3] was subsequently named as the first chairman of the Council on December 26, 1963. The Council's first ten members were professors Erdal İnönü, Ratip Berker, Hikmet Binark, Mecit Çağatay, Reşat Garan, Feza Gürsey, Orhan Işık, Mustafa İnan, Atıf Şengün and İhsan Topaloğlu. They nominated Professor Nimet Özdaş as the first secretary general of TÜBİTAK effective March 1, 1964.

At that time of its establishment, TÜBİTAK’s primary tasks at the time were supporting basic and applied academic research and encouraging careers in science by providing incentives to young researchers, in particular to those working in natural sciences. To carry out these tasks, four research grant committees were set up to fund projects in the areas of basic sciences, engineering, medicine, agriculture and animal husbandry. The number now stands at ten and also includes one assigned to social sciences and humanities, all functioning under the Research Support Programmes Department. A separate “Scientist Training Group”, also set up at the time to orient promising students towards scientific careers and help their advancement thereafter, has now evolved into the present Science Fellowships and Grant Programmes Division.


TÜBİTAK is responsible for the development and coordination of scientific research in line with the national targets and priorities, set by the Turkish Academy of Sciences (TÜBA). More than 2,500 researchers work at the 15 different research institutes and research centers attached to TÜBİTAK, where both contract-based and targeted nationwide research is conducted. TÜBİTAK represents Turkey in international research efforts including memberships in European Science Foundation and the European Union Framework Programmes for Research and Technological Development.

Following research centers and institutes are subordinate to TÜBİTAK:[4]

  • Marmara Research Center (MAM)
    • Energy Institute
    • Food Institute
    • Chemical Technology Institute
    • Environment and Cleaner Production Institute
    • Materials Institute
    • Earth and Marine Sciences Institute
    • Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Institute


TÜBİTAK gives following awards:[5]

  • Science Award to living scientists for significant contributions to the advancement of universal science (Category:Recipients of TÜBİTAK Science Award)
  • Service Award to those, who have significantly served the development of science and technology (Category:Recipients of TÜBİTAK Service Award)
  • Incentive Award to living scientists under the age of 40 and who have proved to have the necessary qualifications to contribute to science in the future at an international level,
  • Special Award to Turkish scientists living abroad (equivalent to the TÜBITAK Science Award).

Funds and Scholarships

The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK) is offering funding to national/international scientists and researchers in an effort to attract highly educated individuals to Turkey.

TÜBİTAK grants fellowships for international highly qualified PhD students and young post-doctoral researchers to pursue their research in Turkey in the fields of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Technological Sciences, Medical Sciences, Agricultural Sciences, Social Sciences and Humanities. The program aims to promote Turkey’s scientific and technological collaboration with countries of the prospective researchers. Preference will be given to candidates who demonstrate the potential to contribute significantly to Turkey’s goal of international cooperation in scientific and technological development.

Products & Projects

See also


  1. ^ "TÜBİTAK scientists seeking to leave Turkey due to political pressure". Facts on Turkey. 16 November 2014. 
  2. ^ "Secular scholars fight government control in Turkey". RSC. 
  3. ^ İnönü, Erdal. "Cahit Arf'tan Anılar" (in Türkçe). TÜBİTAK. 
  4. ^ "R&D Activities". TÜBİTAK. Retrieved 2013-02-19. 
  5. ^ "TÜBİTAK Awards". TÜBİTAK. Retrieved 2013-02-18. 

External links

  • official website
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