“YAKLAŞ” (APPROACH) Unites Academicians and Researchers from Different Disciplines at the Same Platform
In celebration of our University’s 10th anniversary in 2018, the first of our year-long series of special events took place at the OzU Forum Area on October 17 and 18 with the name of “Yaklaş’’, meaning ''Approach” The event is designed and curated as “OzU Transdisciplinary Thought” process. The participants of the panels have recommended the development of strategies to bring people from different disciplines and understand the complex problems with ‘human’ at the center. On its first day, the event brought together prominent speakers from several disciplines, including economics, architecture, gastronomy, engineering, law, psychology, physics, design, international relations and history. The program included three panel discussions under the themes of “Out of the Box,” Performance” and Action”. In another panel titled ‘’Influence,” our invited speaker Mr. Yılmaz Büyükerşen, Mayor of Eskişehir Metropolitan Municipality, and our Rector Prof. Dr. Esra Gençtürk, highlighted the importance of transdisciplinary studies.
"In a university education, we must support transdisciplinary studies"
The opening address of the event was delivered by our Rector Prof Dr. Esra Gencturk on October 17. Prof. Dr. Gençtürk emphasized that the world has complicated problems which can only be approached with the collective efforts of different disciplines. Prof. Dr. Esra Gencturk said “From global warming to hunger, economic crises to migration, the world is looking for solutions to many diverse complex problems. However, it does not seem very possible to forge ahead in our quest for a solution if we limit our view to only a single field of expertise. Instead of just waiting for a solution from our own fields of expertise, we must move beyond limits, and bring together different disciplines while we are at the ideation or project develeopment stage. It is paramount that universities support this transdisciplinary mindset. As academics and universities, we must leave our comfort zones, question what we know, become aware of what we do not know, and make it a systematic habit for us to see things from the perspective of different disciplines. It is education that needs transdisciplinary studies and models the most.”
The opening addresses were ensued with the first session of the day which was conducted by Prof. Dr. M. Pınar Mengüç, the Head of Mechanical Engineering Department and the Director of the Center for Energy, Environment, and Economy (CEEE) at Özyeğin University. The first session of the day was titled as “Out-of-the-Box”, where academicians and researchers from different disciplines at Özyeğin University discussed the underlying concepts. The invited speakers of the first session included Associate Prof. Özge Samancı, Head of the Deparment of Gastronomy and Culinary Arts, Associate Prof. Dr. Deniz Sert, a faculty member at the Department of International Relations at the Faculty of Social Sciences, Dr. Lecturer Selenga Gürmen, a faculty member at the Department of Pscyhology, and Prof. Dr. Alpay Er, Head of the Department of Industrial Design at the Faculty of Architecture and Design. The second session titled “Performance” was moderated by Dr. Özlem Bahadır Karaoğlu. The panelists in this session were Prof. Dr. Tanju Erdem, Vice Rector for Academic Affairs, Prof. Dr. Alper Ünlü, a faculty member at the Faculty of Architecture and Design, Dr. Lecturer Özlem Özkal, a faculty member at the Department of Communication Design, and Dr. Lecturer Ali Sipahi, a faculty member at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences.
In the afternoon, the first session brought together Mr. Yılmaz Büyükerşen, Mayor of Eskişehir Metropolitan Municipality and the Rector Prof Dr. Esra Gencturk under the theme of “Influence,” and conducted by Prof. Dr. M. Pınar Mengüç. Mr. Yılmaz Büyükerşen recounted the story of how he changed the city of Eskişehir. Mr. Büyükerşen’s stories earned the students and academics’ respect and admiration. The final session of the event titled “Action” as moderated by Gökçe Ersel Ötkün, M. Arch from CEEE. The session also featured several members of Özyeğin University, including Prof. Dr. Özlem Yenerer Çakmut, a faculty member at the Faculty of Law, Prof. Dr. Güray Erkol, Vice Rector for Student Affairs, Dr. İsmail Arı, Director of the Technology Transfer Office, and Prof. Dr. Ümit Özlale, a faculty member at the Faculty of Business.
The second day of the event was celebrated with a series of workshops to give junior and senior students at Özyeğin University the opportunity to experience transdisciplinary thought process in eleven different complex themes.
M. Pinar Mengüç, Özlem Bahadır Karaoğlu and Gökçe Ötkün were the curators and the organizers of this two-day “transdisciplinary thinking” event.