An Independent Science Academy Founded in Turkey
Seventy four out of the 137 members of the Turkish Academy of Sciences (TÜBA) have resigned since it became clear, with a decree issued on the 2nd of November 2011, that the government would not revoke its decision to directly or indirectly appoint two thirds of the Academy membership. These appointments were made on 5th and 6th of June 2012.
On the 25th of November 2011, seventeen former members of the Turkish Academy of Sciences have founded the "Science Academy Society," as an independent, self-governing, civil-societal organization to promote scientific merit, freedom and integrity. The charter of the Science Academy was officially approved on the 2nd of December 2011. The Science Academy made its public debut on the 3rd of December 2011, at a well attended press conference which received considerable coverage in the mainstream news media.
The Science Academy will endorse the time-honored traditions of integrity, independence and social engagement, and endeavor to spread these traditions within the academic milieu. It will strive to contribute substantially to the improvement of science education and the public perception of science. The Science Academy will also provide informed and independent advice to the public on matters related to new scientific developments, science policies and science ethics.
Members of the Turkish Academy of Sciences who were elected prior to the governmental decree of 27 August 2011 have been invited to join the new Science Academy upon signing a declaration of adherence to the principles of academic excellence, freedom and integrity. At present the membership has reached 59, plus the first eight Honorary Foreign Members of the Science Academy who are prominent international scientists and scholars who have given effective support during the crisis that led to the foundation of the Science Academy. The Science Academy will continue to freely elect new members according to the highest standards of research and scholarship in the Natural Sciences, Mathematics, Social Sciences and Humanities, Engineering and Medicine.
Many national academies and international leagues of academies gave support to TÜBA during the crisis by writing letters to authorities in defense of the principles and traditions of academies. It is the express desire of the new Science Academy to join international unions of science academies. The Academy will also seek close cooperation with other Academies and civil-societal organizations with similar aims both at home and abroad.
The Founding Members are:
Ali Alpar, Astrophysics (Sabancı Univ.)
Cumhur Ertekin, Medicine (Ege Univ.)
Ayşe Erzan, Physics (İstanbul Technical Univ.)
Hamit Fişek, Psychology (Boğaziçi Univ.)
Naci Görür, Geology (İstanbul Technical Univ.)
Sami Gülgöz, Psychology (Koç Univ.)
Metin Gürses, Physics, (Bilkent Univ.)
Rahmi Güven, Physics (Boğaziçi Univ.)
Ahmet Oral, Physics (Sabancı Univ.)
Şevket Pamuk, Economic History (Boğaziçi Univ.)
Önder Pekcan, Physics (Kadir Has Univ.)
İlhan Tekeli, Planning (Middle East Technical Univ.)
Tosun Terzioğlu, Mathematics (Sabancı Univ.)
Aslihan Tolun, Molecular Biology and Genetics (Boğaziçi Univ.)
Ayhan Ulubelen, Chemistry (İstanbul Univ.)
Yücel Yılmaz, Geology (Kadir Has Univ.)
Ersin Yurtsever, Chemistry (Koç Univ.)