About Us
The Center for Urban Studies aims to uncover the unexplored patterns of social life by examining the social, economic and cultural formations in a wide range of urban scales in an empirical and theoretical manner and in this way, to make an empiric and theoretical contribution to the urban history, urban sociology, urban management and urban ecology.

​​İstanbul Şehir University Center for Urban Studies offers consultancy and reporting services for city planning activities in local governments as well as extensive urban studies and academic urban history research.

The Center for Urban Studies, which specializes in quantitative and qualitative research techniques with its research staff from different disciplines, focuses on the social, economic, historical and spatial transformation of Istanbul, and also continues to research about issues such as demography, Ottoman cities, urban geography, cultural heritage, urban transformation, migration and spatial relations.

The Center for Urban Studies conducts a research process exceptional for Turkey by relating large-scale databases (Prime Ministry Ottoman Archives records, population, demography, socio-economic data of Turkey Statistical Institute, the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce records, etc.) with the newly developed classification, stratification, pattern recognition methods and Geographic Information Systems (GIS). In this sense, the interdisciplinary structure of urban studies is supported by the center's staff, written and visual archive of Istanbul and the cities of Turkey, and conceptual approaches and methods. 

With its original research approach, the Center for Urban Studies carries out joint projects with the academic fellows as well as TÜBİTAK, İSTKA, EU, municipalities / local authorities, NGOs and the private sector; and serves as a bridge between “research" and “practice" thanks to its finished and ongoing projects. 

Center for Urban Studies focuses on three main themes:

Urban History (Ottoman Cities and Istanbul)

  • Studies of cultural heritage of the city
  • The emergence, development and transformation of cities
  • The study of economic and social aspects of cities
  • Visualization of research data

Social and Spatial Change and Continuity

  • Comparative urban geography centered on the cities of Turkey
  • Globalization and local narratives of global cities
  • Comparative urban studies and ethnography of the global city

Demographic Transitions and Migration Studies

  • International (Refugees) and internal migration models
  • Social integration and segregation