POL4991 Political Culture and DemocracyBahçeşehir UniversityDegree Programs ENERGY SYSTEMS ENGINEERINGGeneral Information For StudentsDiploma SupplementErasmus Policy StatementNational QualificationsBologna Commission
Bachelor TR-NQF-HE: Level 6 QF-EHEA: First Cycle EQF-LLL: Level 6

Course Introduction and Application Information

Course Code Course Name Semester Theoretical Practical Credit ECTS
POL4991 Political Culture and Democracy Spring 3 0 3 4
This catalog is for information purposes. Course status is determined by the relevant department at the beginning of semester.

Basic information

Language of instruction: English
Type of course: Non-Departmental Elective
Course Level: Bachelor’s Degree (First Cycle)
Mode of Delivery: Face to face
Course Coordinator : Assoc. Prof. ESRA ALBAYRAKOĞLU
Course Lecturer(s): Prof. Dr. YILMAZ ESMER
Recommended Optional Program Components: None
Course Objectives: This course is designed to discuss theories, methods, and findings of empirical research on democratic political culture. First, we will discuss a general frame of reference for the study of political culture and then we move into the classics to distinguish between different types of democratic communities. After setting out the stage for a general framework, we proceed to a detailed examination of Turkish political culture.

Learning Outcomes

The students who have succeeded in this course;
The students who have succeeded in this course;

1- Define various approaches to democracy;
2- Grasp the measurement of democracy and democracy scales developed by various institutions;
3- Explain various cultural approaches to politics and political regimes starting with Platon and Aristotle;
4- Evaluate definitions of political culture and comparative empirical studies of this concept;
5- Identify main features of Turkish political culture.

Course Content

Defining democratization, approaches to the measurement of democracy, classical and contemporary theories, analysis of democratic political culture, ‘‘The Civic Culture“, Islam and democracy, Turkish political culture

Weekly Detailed Course Contents

Week Subject Related Preparation
1) Introduction
2) What is democratization? What are the major analytical tools for studying democratization? How can regimes be classified? What are the two essential conditions of a democratic regime? Required reading: • Democratization-Chapter 2 (C. W. Haerpfer, P. Bernhagen, R. F. Inglehart, C. Welzel, Oxford University Press, 2009). Required reading: • Democratization-Chapter 3 (C. W. Haerpfer, P. Bernhagen, R. F. Inglehart, C. Welzel, Oxford University Press, 2009).
3) Approaches to the measurement of democracy, major indices of democracy Required reading: • Democratization-Chapter 3 (C. W. Haerpfer, P. Bernhagen, R. F. Inglehart, C. Welzel, Oxford University Press, 2009).
4) Classical and contemporary theories of democracy and democratization. Different paths to democratization Required reading: • Democratization-Chapter 6 (C. W. Haerpfer, P. Bernhagen, R. F. Inglehart, C. Welzel, Oxford University Press, 2009).
5) When and how democratization fails? Required reading: • Democratization-Chapter 17 (C. W. Haerpfer, P. Bernhagen, R. F. Inglehart, C. Welzel, Oxford University Press, 2009).
6) A general framework for the analysis of democratic political culture Required reading: • Dieter Fuchs. 2007. “The Political Culture Paradigm.” In Russell J. Dalton and Hans-Dieter Klingemann (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Political Behavior. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 161-184.
8) A true classic in the study of political culture: "The Civic Culture" Required readings: • Gabriel A. Almond and Sidney Verba. 1963. The Civic Culture. Princeton: Princeton University Press. esp. chapters 1, 2, 13. • Gabriel Almond, 1980. “The Intellectual History of the Civic Culture Concept.” In Gabriel Almond and Sidney Verba, eds., The Civic Culture Revisited. Boston: Little Brown, pp. 1-36.
9) Political culture as an essential factor in sustaining a democratic regime. Required reading: • Democratization-Chapter 9 (C. W. Haerpfer, P. Bernhagen, R. F. Inglehart, C. Welzel, Oxford University Press, 2009).
10) Gender, gender equality, women’s rights and democracy: do we know the answer to this question? Required reading: • Democratization-Chapter 10 (C. W. Haerpfer, P. Bernhagen, R. F. Inglehart, C. Welzel, Oxford University Press, 2009).
11) Religion, religiosity and democracy. Required readings: • Samuel P. Huntington. 1993. “The Clash of Civilizations.” Foreign Affairs 72(3): 22-49. • Pippa Norris and Ronald Inglehart. 2003. “Islamic Culture and Democracy: Testing the ‘Clash of Civilizations’ Thesis.” In Ronald Inglehart (ed.). Human Values and Social Change. Leiden: Brill, 5-33. • Yilmaz Esmer, “Is There and Islamic Civilization?” in Ronald Inglehart (ed.) Human Values and Social Change. Leiden: Brill,
12) Rising populism and democracy: Can democracy survive the rising tide of populism? Required readings: • Yascha Mounk, 2018 The People vs. Democracy: Why Our Freedom is in Danger and How to Save It? Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 41-61. • Rick Shenkman, “The Shocking Paper Predicting the End of Democracy,” Sept 08, 2019, Politico.
13) Turkish Political Culture Required reading: • Y. Esmer, A. Okcuoglu, S. Kurutas, “Political Culture: A Tale of Two Civilizations” in E. Canan Sokullu, ed., Turkey in Transition: Politics, Society and Foreign Policy. Peter Lang, 2020, 81-100.
14) General Review


Course Notes / Textbooks: Weekly readings will be uploaded on ItsLearning at the beginning of the semester. Please note that all book chapters and articles listed on the syllabus are also accessible through the BAU Library.
References: Haftalık ders okumalarının tamamı, dönem başında ItsLearning’e yüklenir. Ders izlencesinde yer alan tüm kitap bölümleri ve makalelere BAU Kütüphanesi’nden de erişilebilir.

Evaluation System

Semester Requirements Number of Activities Level of Contribution
Attendance 13 % 10
Midterms 1 % 30
Final 1 % 60
Total % 100
Total % 100

ECTS / Workload Table

Activities Number of Activities Workload
Course Hours 13 39
Study Hours Out of Class 13 58
Midterms 1 1.5
Final 1 1.5
Total Workload 100

Contribution of Learning Outcomes to Programme Outcomes

No Effect 1 Lowest 2 Low 3 Average 4 High 5 Highest
Program Outcomes Level of Contribution
1) Build up a body of knowledge in mathematics, science and Energy Systems Engineering subjects; use theoretical and applied information in these areas to model and solve complex engineering problems.
2) Ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex Energy Systems Engineering problems; select and apply proper modeling and analysis methods for this purpose.
3) Ability to design complex Energy systems, processes, devices or products under realistic constraints and conditions, in such a way as to meet the desired result; apply modern design methods for this purpose.
4) Ability to devise, select, and use modern techniques and tools needed for solving complex problems in Energy Systems Engineering practice; employ information technologies effectively.
5) Ability to design and conduct numerical or pysical experiments, collect data, analyze and interpret results for investigating the complex problems specific to Energy Systems Engineering.
6) Ability to cooperate efficiently in intra-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary teams; and show self-reliance when working on Energy Systems-related problems
7) Ability to communicate effectively in English and Turkish (if he/she is a Turkish citizen), both orally and in writing. Write and understand reports, prepare design and production reports, deliver effective presentations, give and receive clear and understandable instructions.
8) Recognize the need for life-long learning; show ability to access information, to follow developments in science and technology, and to continuously educate oneself.
9) Develop an awareness of professional and ethical responsibility, and behave accordingly. Be informed about the standards used in Energy Systems Engineering applications.
10) Learn about business life practices such as project management, risk management, and change management; develop an awareness of entrepreneurship, innovation, and sustainable development.
11) Acquire knowledge about the effects of practices of Energys Systems Engineering on health, environment, security in universal and social scope, and the contemporary problems of Energys Systems engineering; is aware of the legal consequences of Energys Systems engineering solutions.