Cultural diplomacy and Turkey's regional-global projection. Analysis of lessons for Colombia.

Project: Research Project

Project Details


The foreign policy of intermediate States with concrete development possibilities has been one of the most relevant issues in the study of international relations since the beginning of this century. The investment of some States in attributes of power that facilitate their transit to intermediate and/or regional powers is a fact that should not go unnoticed in the improvement of Colombia's relations with the world. Precisely, the country is at the center of this dynamic since its classification within the group of States of the CIVETS that agglomerate Colombia, Indonesia, Egypt, Vietnam, Turkey and South Africa. This fact should not be assumed with excessive patriotism or naivety. In other words, Colombia will not become a regional or intermediate power in the course of 10 years. In spite of this, it has attributes of power that can be capitalised. In addition, there is a favorable international situation to diversify its relations with the world.
One region in which Colombia has not had an important historical presence has been the Middle East. Despite the cultural links with the Arab and Muslim world as a result of the migrations that have conditioned the human geography of the Colombian Caribbean coast, Colombia's relations with this region are timid. Of course, Turkey is not an Arab country, and neither has there been a major Turkish migration to Colombia, as did the Lebanese, Palestinian and Syrian Arab populations. However, Turkey is an important reference in the Middle East and rapprochement to it may mean strengthening ties with an area whose interest in Latin America is evident and growing.
Over a relatively short period of time, Turkey's foreign policy has achieved important achievements, three of which stand out. Firstly, a successful rapprochement with the West, as part of NATO and confirming this vocation, has taken advantage of its geographical position and is currently configured as an essential ally for the stabilisation of Iraq, Syria and as a valid interlocutor with Iran. Secondly, and despite its rapprochement with the West, Turkey continues to be a successful benchmark for many Eastern states. According to a survey carried out by the Turkish Economic and Social Foundation in 2009, Turkey appeared among the Arab population as the most admired non-Arab nation with popularity levels of over 70% (Franchon 2010). Indeed, its rapprochement with the Arab and Muslim world is growing. And thirdly, this rapprochement has allowed it to get closer to other regions of the world such as Latin America.


It is hoped that the implementation of the project will promote knowledge of Turkey and the Middle East region, not only in commercial terms as traditionally interpreted. At the same time, the political advantages of knowledge of regions without an evident scope in Colombian foreign policy must be related. This can be achieved through the generation of knowledge with the proposed book, the research article and two national forums for the dissemination of results.
The idea is to strengthen the work between faculties, and the generation of knowledge in network. Therefore, the project will have the support of the Turkish Studies Center and the Center for Thinking on Competitive Strategies (CEPEC). In this way, various knowledge, theoretical and cultural perspectives are combined in order to strengthen at the national level the capacity of the academy as an advisor to foreign policy decision-makers.
The purpose of the project also contemplates the inclusion of non-academic and non-political sectors. For this reason, the idea was to produce a book that is easy to understand and disseminate, which will be promoted in different sectors interested in foreign policy, but without political training (schools, NGOs, trade unions, cultural centres and chambers of commerce).
Effective start/end date2/1/131/30/14

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth

Main Funding Source

  • FIUR


  • Bogotá D.C.


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