Isomorphism in Provision of Culture: The Case of Municipalities in Istanbul and Their Cultural Centers


  • Ayça İnce



Cultural Policy, New Public Management, Municipalities, Cultural Centers, Istanbul, Turkey


Regardless of the diminishing budgets for investment in the cultural sphere, especially at the municipality level. Since 2000, 61 cultural centers have been opened in Istanbul alone. In spite of the growing cultural and artistic diversity and Turkish society's various demands in cultural services, of Turkish cultural policies on a local, city, and national level serves as a starting point for investigating how isomorphism transpires to the provision of cultural services on the level of Istanbul's district municipalities. This study not only explains the role of district municipalities in the cultural field of Istanbul, but also argues that three interconnected concepts—democratization, professionalization, and marketization—promote cultural convergence.


Ayça İnce

is an independent researcher and lecturer in Cultural Management, Sociology and Urban Planning. She was previously the Vice-President of the Center for Cultural Policies and Management at Istanbul Bilgi University and Editor in Chief of its publications. She studied urban and regional planning at Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University (MSGSU), and has received an MSc from the Cities, Space and Society Program at the London School of Economics and Political Sciences (2001), and an MA in Sociology from MSGSU (2003). Ayca Ince was granted a PhD degree in 2012 after defending her thesis in sociology at MSGSU, entitled “Isomorphism in Cultural Policies: An Example of District Municipalities in Istanbul and Cultural Centers.” Her recent paper, “The ‘Mehter March’ of Cultural Policy in Turkey,” was published in the special issue of L’Europe en formation: 90 Years of Republic of Turkey (2013). She is a member of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA-Turkey).






İnce, A. „Isomorphism in Provision of Culture: The Case of Municipalities in Istanbul and Their Cultural Centers“. Middle East - Topics & Arguments, Bd. 7, Januar 2017, S. 39-50, doi:10.17192/meta.2017.7.6331.