Nihan Toprakkiran

Nihan Toprakkiran is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Zukunftskolleg, affiliated with the Chair of International Relations and Conflict Management.

Areas of Interest

  • Social rights and welfare regimes
  • Politics of development
  • Social and economic inequality
  • Political behavior of immigrants


My current research is about the political behavior of immigrants with regard to the politics of their countries of origin. In particular, I am interested in exploring how socioeconomic factors that are embedded in their current country of residence, such as their access to rights and level of integration, impact the external voting preferences of immigrants.

My PhD research was focused on the development of social rights and welfare regimes in middle-income countries. By looking at the case of means-tested social assistance, I examined the incorporation of informal institutions into the formal welfare system in Turkey. My previous research also included comparative work on social assistance in Spain and Italy, especially the impact of political and financial decentralisation on the development of social policy across regions. 

Curriculum Vitae

2019 – present

Postdoctoral Fellow
Zukunftskolleg, University of Konstanz

2017 – 2018

Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Department of Politics and Public Administration, University of Konstanz
On parental leave between December 2017 – June 2018 

2013 – 2017

Doctor of Philosophy in Politics
University of York, UK
Thesis title: Consolidation of a Semi-Formal Welfare Regime in Turkey

2011 – 2012

Master of Science in Comparative Social Policy
University of Oxford, UK
Thesis title: Processes of Decentralisation in Social Assistance: A Comparative Assessment of Spanish and Italian Experiences of Guaranteed Minimum Income

2006 – 2011

Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Relations
Bogaziçi University, Turkey