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Tekeli, İlhan

Tekeli, İlhan (b. November 11, 1937, Izmir), academician who received the Vehbi Koç Award (*) for culture in 2020.  He won recognition for his work on social sciences and urban studies.

Professor İlhan Tekeli attended elementary and middle school in Izmir. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Istanbul Technical University (ITU) in 1960. He then went on to earn Master's degrees from Middle East Technical University (METU) in 1964 and the University of Pennsylvania in 1966, followed by a PhD from ITU in 1968, all in Urban and Regional Planning. From 1970 until his retirement, he taught at METU.

Professor İlhan Tekeli, who has received the highest number citations for his academic work on a wide array of topics from urban studies to social sciences in Turkish, has published more than 660 scientific articles and papers on urban planning, regional planning, social systems, macro-geography, local administrations, economic policies, history of economics, urban history, municipal history, educational planning, philosophy of science, and historiography. He has published more than 110 books, which he wrote with prominent academics from multiple disciplines, especially with Selim İlkin and by himself.  His history papers with Selim İlkin were collected under the book Cumhuriyetin Harcı (Republic’s Fee) by Bilgi University. Tarih Vakfı (History Foundation) published his scientific articles in 26 volumes.

He was a co-founder of Tarih Vakfı and served as its chair for the first ten years of the foundation. He was a co-founder of the Science Academy in Turkey. A foundation in his name was established in February 2018 with the contributions of his former students. İlhan Tekeli Foundation conducts important studies on understanding the development and transformation of settlements, as well as on improving human rights, democracy and quality of life as integral parts of urban life, and organizes the İlhan Tekeli Urban Studies Biennial in Ankara.

Professor İlhan Tekeli received the Mustafa Parlar Award for Excellence in Education in 1999, TÜBİTAK Service Award in 2006, TASAM Strategic Vision Award in 2009, TMMOB Chamber of Architects Contribution to Architecture Award in 2014, Sakıp Sabancı Social Science International Research Award in 2016, and the Turkish Independent Architects Association’s special jury award for his İzmirdeniz project in 2019.  He has served as a consultant for the Union of Municipalities of Turkey and local administrations including Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir, and Izmit Municipalities.

Please click to watch the film about the life and work of Professor İlhan Tekeli, recipient of the 19th Vehbi Koç Award.

Please click to watch Professor İlhan Tekeli's acceptance speech at the 19th Vehbi Koç Award ceremony.


Abadan Unat, Nermin

Political scientist who received the Vehbi Koç Award for education in 2012.