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Europeanisation of gender equality policies: an analysis of the gender equality in employment in Turkey

Urhan Kurtulan, Ecem Pınar
This thesis analyses the domestic transformation that Turkey has experienced in terms of gender equality in employment and the role of the European Union (EU) on this process. Besides providing an account of the laws affecting Turkish women’s employment by comparing the periods before and after Turkey’s acceptance as a candidate state to the EU, it also examines the success of the adopted laws’ translation into implementation in a way to improve Turkish women’s position. By adopting a bottom-up approach to Europeanisation, it treats the EU as one of the possible explanations causing domestic change in terms of gender equality in employment rather than a predominant causal factor. As an attempt to discern the impact of the EU from other variables, particular focus is put on the perceptions of the member of women’s civil society organisation (CSOs) of the role of the EU in the reform process. In conclusion, it demonstrates that that the EU is the most significant actor for improving gender equality in employment although its impact is limited mainly due to the gap between the gender equality legislation that have been transposed during the EU accession process and its actual implementation.