Islamic Philanthropy in Turkey: Practices and Discourses

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Philanthropy for social justice has attracted more and more attention over the years. In Turkey, Civil Society Organizations are becoming more sensitive towards a rights-based approach, working in a range of areas from gender inequality to rural development; however, this has yet to translate into an established discourse within the philanthropic sector.

Although figures on giving, attitudes towards social justice, and civic participation have not changed dramatically since 2004, there are important developments in the Turkish philanthropic sector that indicate that innovation is underway.

These developments can be divided into three main areas: 1) Developing new strategies for existing foundations; 2) The creation of new institutions to facilitate philanthropy; and, 3) The application of internet and social media to facilitate philanthropy and civic involvement. This article charts new discourses and emerging applications of social justice philanthropy in Turkish society against the backdrop of Turkey’s democratization process.

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