Ibrahim Burhan Isik
Grant TypeDissertation Fieldwork Grant
Institutional AffiliationArizona, U. of
Grant numberGr. 10606
Approve DateSeptember 29, 2023
Project TitleIsik, Ibrahim (Arizona, U. of) "Infrastructures of Securitization: Environment, Technology, and Governance in Southeast Turkey"
In Turkey, the state has made a concerted effort to upgrade the country’s infrastructure over the last twenty years, including everything from water and electricity to roads and housing. But it has also done so unevenly and punitively, especially in the predominately Kurdish southeastern region, where a protracted militarized conflict between the Turkish state and the Kurdish minority has resulted in a complex web of infrastructure and social control. There, the new infrastructural investments not only address longstanding infrastructural inadequacies but also reinforce the counterinsurgency measures the Turkish state implements against residents, especially since the (re-)escalation of the Turkish–Kurdish conflict in 2015. I propose 12 months of ethnographic research in the southeastern provinces of Mardin and Diyarbakir, where many new infrastructure projects have been completed but residents nevertheless continue to experience infrastructural inadequacies and disruptions. Through participant observation and interviews, I will examine the region’s infrastructure regimes with a focus on the provisioning and governance of access to water, electricity, and mobility to understand how infrastructural improvements utilizing technology combine with existing securitization strategies in the region to create new infrastructures of securitization that transform people’s livelihoods, identities, temporalities, and socialities.