UNICEF Global     TR

ICRDF- Participants' Profiles

Biographies and Quotations

What is the most exciting opportunity which the digital environment offers for child rights?

Betül Karaosmanoğlu

"With the power of giant collaborative, cumulative and highly accessible network; the digital environment has an amazing potential for a more diverse education opportunities in the sense of the right of the education of the child."

Betül Karaosmanoğlu is a lecturer at Pamukkale University department of Public Relations. She graduated from Anadolu University the Faculty of Public Relations and the Faculty of Business Administration. She is studying the representation of the child in ads. 


Brian O'Neill
"The digital environment offers for opportunity for a global conversation in which all children can be heard" 

Brian O’Neill is Head of Research for the College of Arts and Tourism, Dublin Institute of Technology and prior to that, Head of its School of Media. He is a leading researcher on young people’s use of new media and the internet.  He has conducted research for the European Commission, UNICEF, and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.  He leads the EU Kids Online network in Ireland and is responsible for its policy works package. He is a member of Ireland's Internet Safety Advisory Committee. He also chaired the Irish government’s task force on Internet Content Governance, reporting to the Minister for Communications. In April 20014, he undertook as independent assessor an evaluation of internet safety for 16 companies represented in the ICT Coalition.  His latest publication is Towards a Better Internet for Children? Policy Pillars, Players and Paradoxes, jointly edited with Elisabeth Staksrud and Sharon McLaughlin and published by Nordicom. 


Burcu Şimşek

"The most exciting opportunity that the digital environment offers for child rights is the way it enlarges the possibilities for their informal learning. The digital environments also enhance the engagement of children with other children in international platforms. However, the most important aspect the digital environments may provide is widening the social inclusion for children with disabilities."

Assistant Professor Burcu Simsek is the coordinator of the Digital Storytelling Unit in the Faculty of Communication at Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey. She is also the Vice-Dean for International Relations. She completed her PhD in 2012 in Creative Industries Faculty at Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane with a thesis based on the fieldwork, introducing digital storytelling workshops to Turkey with a gender focus. Simsek received her MSc degree in Women's Studies at Ankara University in 2006. She worked as a journalist for three years after completing her undergraduate studies between 1998-2001 and she was an instructor of English in School of Foreign Languages at Hacettepe University from 2001-2006. Commencing her PhD at Ankara University in 2006, she started working in Faculty of Communication at Hacettepe University as a research assistant. In 2009, she established the Digital Storytelling Workshop Unit at Hacettepe University, Faculty of Communication, Ankara, Turkey, where she is an active practitioner of digital storytelling interested in the intersections of digital storytelling, gender and health in relation to social inclusion. She runs digital storytelling workshops in Turkey and abroad. Her academic interests focus on gender issues and new media studies.


Didem Akan

Didem Akan is Communication for Development Officer at UNICEF Turkey.  She has worked for UNICEF on early childhood development, education and communication for 8 years.  She holds a Master Degree in International Relations from Bilkent University (Ankara, Turkey).  She also worked for UNDP Turkey and Syria on good governance, gender mainstreaming and South-South cooperation.  



Handan Kaygusuz

I have been studying as a journalism student since 2008.  I have had various experiences in the journalism and publication field. For instance I have held numerous internships at TV channels, newspapers.  I have a highly inquisitive and communicative personality. I enjoy team work immensely. I display notable performance under high pressure environments. I like to study and do research about social multicultural structure of Turkish society and minority, immigrants and gender discrimination issues. 



Nezahat Hanzade Uralman

"Equal participation to culture is a right for children as well as all people in different age. Digital environment offers opportunities to develop children’s cultural participation. This responsibility of cultural institutions which aims at  developing children’s creativity and knowledge can be issued in the future."   

Nezahat Hanzade Uralman is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Communication at the Istanbul Aydin University. She also teaches for Museum Studies Graduate Program and Department of Conservation and Restoration of Art Works at Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University. She completed her Ph.D in Public Relations Program at Marmara University (2012), MA in Museum Studies at Yildiz Technical University (2006) and BA in Librarianship at Istanbul University (1999). Prior to joining Faculty of Communication, she was a research assistant in the Museum Studies Graduate Program and Art Management Program at Art and Design Faculty of Yildiz Technical University (2005-2012), an art librarian in Istanbul Modern Museum of Art (2004-2005) and art journalist. She is the co-editor of the book titled Müzebilimin ABC’si (ABC of Museology) published in Turkey. Her research interests focus on communication of memory institutions (libraries, archives and museums) and public relations in cultural sector. She is a member of International Council of Museums (ICOM) and Turkish Librarians Association. 


Heba Metwally

Heba Metwally is a researcher, English translator, and a media specialist at the State Information Service of the Egyptian Ministry of Information, where she has worked since 1997. Ms. Metwally is currently a PhD. Candidate in the Faculty of Mass Communication at Cairo University. She is also a board member of the Egyptian Translators and Linguists’ Association, as well as the supervisor of its Online Forum for English Language & Literature.

Ms. Metwally has previously worked as an expert and media coordinator at the Population and Migration Department for the League of Arab States. Ms. Metwally has obtained a B.A. in English literature at Ain Shams University in 1996, a two-years-Diploma in Journalism in the Faculty of Mass Communication at Cairo University in 2001, and a M.A. in Journalism & Mass Communication at the American University in Cairo in 2007. In 2008 Ms. Metwally attended two academic media conferences in London, and presented papers there.

Ms. Metwally’s research interests include media and journalism, and investigating the image of women in the Egyptian media. Ms. Metwally’s Masters’ thesis titled, “The Role of Egyptian Film in Stereotyping Single Women”, focuses on how the media played a role in constructing the image of spinsterhood in Egyptian Society. 


John Budd

"Digital offers children two major opportunities: the capacity in their hands to satisfy their curiosity and discover information about their world, and to be able communicate to different audiences in any part of the world." 

John Budd counts himself as a survivor of the tsunami of technological changes in the media landscape over the past decade. He has seen a profound transformation in the way people communicate and the way they receive information. A media professional, Budd started in print and then specialized in television. He was the executive producer of major long form content on Australian TV and was the national editor of TV news for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Budd has worked for the past twelve years at UNICEF as a chief of communication in Indonesia and in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. 



Juergen Grimm

Juergen Grimm has been a professor of communication studies at the University of Vienna since 2004. In 1985, he received his PhD from Siegen University with a theoretical and empirical work focused on content analysis regarding media entertainment. From 1984-1988 post-doc research assistant at the DFG-funded research project “Reality Impartment by the Mass Media” at ZUMA (Center for Surveys, Methods and Analyses). He habilitated at Mannheim University in 1998 with a study on violence depiction in TV documentaries and movies and the impact on children and adults. Before he came to Vienna, Grimm taught and researched at several German universities such as Mannheim, Muenster, Augsburg, Duesseldorf, and Siegen. Apart from his teaching activities, he carries out intensive empirical research especially in the area of media effects and on this basis tries to find solutions for practical problems of media professionals. Since 1994, he has been a member of the board of trustees of the "Freiwillige Selbstkontrolle Fernsehen" ("Organization for the Voluntary Self-Regulation of Television"). He is also chairman of the „Association for the Promotion of Media Research" in Austria and Germany. From 2005-2011 he was the director of the Forum for Methods at the Faculty for Social Sciences at Vienna University. At present he is the head of the Forum of Social Sciences within the Centre for Methods. Currently, he is also the leader of several Viennese research projects, e.g. "Media, Patriotism, Integration", "Broadcasting History in Transnational Space", "Professional Communicators in Europe" and "Entertainment-education within Health Communication". One of his main topics is the impact of media on national identity, societal development and integration. Grimm has published widely on depictions of media violence, war and crisis journalism, news processing, media entertainment, televised impartment of history and on methodological problems of content analyses and media effect research.


Lely Djuhari

"We are seeing a reconfiguring of child rights - in health, education, protection and participation. It's hard to think which will not have a digital dimension. Realizing child rights in the online environment is equally as important as their rights in the offline world." 

Lely Djuhari is a UNICEF communication specialist with a keen interest in journalism education and social media. Since 2005, she has worked for UNICEF and other humanitarian and development agencies in her native Indonesia, Southeast Asian countries, Central and Eastern Europe, Turkey and Central Asia. She oversees multi-country advocacy on inclusion of children with disabilities, ethnic minorities such as the Roma; the roll out of journalism education and child rights in 40 universities in Europe and Central Asia; groundbreaking research and advocacy for maximizing safer online access for boys and girls.  Prior to that she was a correspondent for The Associated Press, Kyodo News and Indonesian newspapers. For 10 years, she covered social and political issues in Indonesia, East Timor`s path to nationhood and the Indian Ocean Tsunami.  While on a Chevening MA scholarship at London`s City University, UK, she explored new media and new competencies needed by journalists in an increasingly connected world. 

Lieke Wilhelmina van de Wiel  
“Children are spending more and more time in a digital world. Just like other environment in which children find themselves most of their time such a schools or families, this environment should also empower and protect girls and boys and enable them to reach their full potential. It time for all of us both to acknowledge the great opportunities which exist in the digital future and to shoulder our own responsibilities.”
Prior to joining UNICEF as Deputy Representative for Turkey on 7 March 2014, Ms. Lieke served as UNICEF Regional Education Adviser in UNICEF Regional Office for South Asia, Nepal since July 2010. She has extensive experience in development, with 15 years in the United Nations system.  
Ms. Lieke is national of Holland. She holds Master in Public Administration from University of Leiden, Netherlands, specialized in Emergency Management and Development Administration. She also holds another Master degree in Latin American Languages and Cultures from same University. 
Ms. Lieke is married and has 2 daughters.


Michael Foley

"The digital environment gives children not just access to media, but the chance to voice their own opinions and exercise their freedom of expression and to be part of the media and so fulfill Article 13 of the UNCRC."

Dr Michael Foley teaches journalism practice and media ethics to undergraduates and post graduates students at the Dublin Institute of Technology. He was a journalist with The Irish Times newspaper for many years and has contributed to newspapers, radio, television, and online in Ireland, UK and the US.  He has worked in journalism training and education in Eastern and South Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia and Africa.  He is a member of the Ethics Council of the National Union of Journalists and a member of the editorial board of the Irish Communications Review and the advisory board of the London based journal, Index On Censorship. He an author of Children’s Rights and Journalism Practice, a Rights Based Perspective with Dr Brian O’Neill and Dr Nóirín Hayes. His research interests include newspaper and journalism history, media ethics, the future of journalism, journalism in emerging democracies and children and the media. 


Mutlu Binark

"New media platforms have some opportunities such as: online expressing and content creation, spreading and searching-finding content. These opportunities enable children to produce their own content through various kinds of applications easily, and empower the artistic expression and civic engagement. New media also create new socio-ecosystem, in which children share their opinions, establish social connection, and develop collobarative culture.  Thus the children can be experience to be a “subject”, instead of being seen as a “object” by the state, family, and the educators."

Mutlu Binark is Professor at the Department of Radio-Television and Cinema, Faculty of Communication, Hacettepe University. She is graduated from Ankara University, School of Journalism and Broadcasting in 1990. Her MA thesis centered upon the field research on the reception practices of soap operas by women audiences (1992); her Ph.D. dissertation focused upon gendered uses of new media technologies both in Japan and Turkey (1999). She is a founding member of Alternative Informatics Association which is one of the leading NGOs on the freedom of speech on Internet and organizing civic campaings on personal data protection on both e-government applications and ISP’s applications in Turkey (http://www.alternatifbilisim.org/wiki/Ana_Sayfa). Ms. Binark is also one of the project advisors of the social sciences& humanities project team of The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey since April 2011.  She teaches media sociology,  and new media culture. She is currently working on ethics on new media, digital media literacy and media pedagogy.  Her recent publications are İnternet, Toplum, Kültür (2005) (co-edited), Eleştirel Medya Okuryazarlığı (2007) (co-authored), Yeni Medya Çalışmaları (2007),  Kültür Endüstrisi Olarak Dijital Oyun (2008) (co-authored), co-edited a book on digital game culture in Turkey, Dijital Oyun Rehberi (2009), co-author of Toplumsal Paylaşım Ağı Facebook (2009, an author of a book chapter in Yeni Medyada Nefret Söylemi (2010), STÖ’ler için Bilişim Rehberi (2011) (with K.Löker), Türkiye’de Dijital Gözetim (co-author) (2012) Ayın Karanlık Yüzü: Yeni Medya ve Etik (with G.Bayraktutan) (2013)  and recently Yeni Medya Çalışmalarında Araştırma Yöntem ve Teknikleri (co-aothor) (2014). She has published articles in European Journal of Communication and Kültür ve İletişim. Her blogs are: www.yenimedya.wordpress.com ve www.dijitaloyunkulturu.wordpress.com.


Nela Kacmarcik
Nela Kacmarcik is the Communication Officer in UNICEF Bosnia and Herzegovina since 2005. She holds a Master Degree in Management from the School of Economics and Business at the University of Sarajevo and currently is the PhD Candidate at the University of Sarajevo. 

Nermina Mujagic

Nermina Mujagic holds PhD in political sciences, she is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Political Science, University of Sarajevo. She  is the autor of  three books: Politicka de/re socijalizacija I mediji (Political De/Resocialization and Media), Izvan politike (Beyond Politics) , and Tihi  govor Bosne (The Silent Talk of Bosnia). She has published a  number of articles in publications such as European Perspectives  (Slovenia) and Dijaloq, Status, Odjek (Bosnia). Her scientific interest includes research into  theories of political conflicts, political communication, theories of political culture, political ideology of political parties, media and conflict.



Nilgün Tutal

Nilgün Tutal, following her BA in Journalism and Public Relations from Gazi University in 1989, started working as a research assistant in the Faculty of Communications at Ankara University. She completed her MA in communication studies from the Institute of Social Sciences of Ankara University (1993), with the thesis titled "Women and Advertisement: A Comparative Critical Study of Ads with Woman Images in the Magazines Kadınca and Kadın ve Aile." In 1996, she was awarded her second MA thesis, titled "La Turquie au Miroir de la Presse Française Nationale et Régionale" (Turkey in the National and Regional French Press), in France where she went with YÖK scholarship. She received her PhD from Robert Schuman University (France, Strasbourg), Department of Communication Sciences in October 1999 with her doctoral thesis titled "Les Représentations de la Turquie dans la Presse Nationale et Régionale" (Representations of Turkey in the National and Regional French Press). Tutal regularly writes for magazines such as Birikim, Doğu Batı, İleti-ş-im, Varlık, Kültür and iletişim and for news websites as Bianet about the following topics: communication, alterity, interculturalism, orientalism, cinema, television and popular culture. She is the translator of Andre Gorz's Misères du présent, richesse du possible (2001), Julia Kristeva's Les Pouvoirs de l'horreur (2004-2005, the best psychoanalysis book award) and Les Nouvelles maladies de l'ame (2007), Eugène Enriquez's De la horde à l'état (2004), all published by Ayrıntı. She translated Luce Irigaray's Je, tu, nous: Pour une culture de la différence for the publisher İmge and another work by the same author titled Entre orient et occident for the publisher Ara-lık, Alain Badiou's Manifeste pour la philosophie and Jacques Attali's La Crise, et après? for the publisher Kırmızı. A revised and enlarged version of her doctoral thesis was published in 2006 by Phoenix with the title Discourses and Representations: Turks in French Imagery or How Do the French Remember the Turks?. Globalization, Communication and Interculturalism which was published byKırmızı in 2006, was republished by EksLibris in April 2014 as a renewed and revised edition with the title Global Communication.


Nurçay Türkoğlu

"The most exciting opportunity which the digital environment offers for child rights is; the children can get access to media and information literacy in their earlier age so that they can express themselves in digital environment and learning via entertainment could be possible."

Nurçay TÜRKOĞLU (Prof. Dr.) is currently working as the Head of Communication Studies Department of Communication Faculty at Çukurova University, Adana. Formerly was working for  Marmara University (1984-2012).  BA Ankara University (1982), MA Istanbul University (1984), MA certificate: Warwick University 1995; Ph.D. Istanbul University, 1988. She had a year of training scholarship of British Council at University of Kent at Canterbury, UK, 1992. Her main interests are; Social Communications, Television Studies, Audience Studies, Media Literacy, Critical Media and Cultural Studies. She has got TUBITAK (Turkish Scientific Research Council) supports for research; besides many international academic scholarships for various conferences, workshops and seminars. She has attended many international conferences in Europe, US, Canada; besides countless academic activities including administrative positions and teaching nationwide in Turkey and in Cyprus. She has published around 15 books and articles such as; "Communication as a Field and Discipline: Turkey" at IEC (International Encyclopaedia of Communication), 2012; “Transforming Neighbourhood Mediators Driven by Poverty on Turkish Reality Television,” Interactions: Studies in Communication & Culture, Intellect, 2012; “Mediated Public Voices Need Theory to be Heard,” Communication Management, 2012. Conference Chair of the 4th European Communication Conference ECREA2012, Istanbul Conference “Social Media, Global Voices”.


Nurseli TAMER

"Share of simultanous information enables immediate intervention."
She is a graduate of American Academy of Uskudar followed by Istanbul University Faculty of Economics majored  in Business Administration and Statistics. Started career with American Express Bank, Istanbul. By 1998 had a career change to be a full time Mom. Since then she has been attending seminars, webinars, SENGinars, and University lectures. Inspired by her daughter, shouldered by the Husband and with the great support of the Bahcesehir University, School of Education faculty members, completed her MA in  Educational Administration . The accepted thesis is on Technological Bullying among adolescents. 

Working with non-profit organizations of Mothers and Children, she identifies herself as a lifetime learner and  believes tha t the knowledge not shared is knowledge wasted.

Özden Cankaya

Prof. Dr. Özden Cankaya is currently Professor at İstanbul Aydın University Faculty of Communication Radio and Television Department. She worked at Galatasaray University Faculty of Communication between 1999-2013 as the Chair of Radio and Television Department. She was the Dean of the Faculty of Communication at Galatasaray University between 2003-2009.
BA (İstanbul University Faculty of Law). MA (TODAİE, 1981 Ankara) Ph. D (Marmara University 1987) Professorship: Marmara University 1997. She worked as a producer TRT (Turkish Radio and Television) between 1970-1981. Areas of interest : Media History, Media Law, Immigration and cultural identities. She has books about Turkish Media and  Media Law. 


Özgür C. Selvi Taşdan

Özgür C. SELVİ TAŞDAN was born in 1973, in İzmir. Following Galatasaray High School, she studied Public Administration at Marmara University. She worked in private sector during ten years. She received her master’s degree from Galatasaray University in 2005 and PhD degree from Marmara University Public Relations Department in 2012. She’s been working as assistant professor since 2012 at Okan University Public Relations and Advertising Department.


Paloma Escudero

In April 2013, Paloma Escudero was appointed as Director of Communications of UNICEF. Bringing her extensive experience and expertise in the areas of communications, fund raising, advocacy and brand management, she oversees UNICEF's global public outreach and communications as its senior communication official.
Prior to the appointment, Ms. Escudero had already been well known among the UNICEF family as Executive Director of the Spanish National Committee. Under her management between 2007 and 2013, the Committee was transformed into a highly efficient organization, increasing its contribution to UNICEF's programmes in more than 150 developing countries and contributing significantly to emergencies such as the Haiti earthquake.
Escudero started her professional career, which spans more than two decades, in Procter & Gamble Spain in 1989, where she was Brand Manager and oversaw the marketing teams responsible for the brand repositioning of products.
After a sabbatical year during which she travelled around the world with her husband and worked as an aid worker in Guatemala, Escudero joined Oxfam in 1997, and became the Director of the Oxfam International Advocacy office for the European Union in 2000. First based in Spain and later in Brussels, She worked on issues such as Overseas Development Aid, external debt, humanitarian law, international agriculture and trade, and climate change.
Escudero holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics and Business Sciences from ICADE -- Universidad Pontificia Comillas in Madrid -- and obtained an Erasmus grant to specialize in marketing at ESSEC business school in Paris.


Sabina Zunic

Sabina Zunic holds a PhD degree in European Politics of Local Governance from the University of Sarajevo, Faculty of Political Science obtained in 2012. Prior to her PhD research, Sabina earned an M.A. in international relations from the American University in Washington DC in 2002 and a B.A. in politics from the Occidental College, California, USA in 1999. Sabina Zunic has been working with UNICEF Bosnia and Herzegovina office since 2010  and is currently holding a position of Child Rights Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist. Sabina is also covering issues related to the CRC, especially when it comes to the government obligations, capacity building and providing technical assistance. In addition, Sabina prepares analytical papers and has recently developed a Situation Analysis Report for UNICEF BiH. 

Prior to her work with UNICEF, Sabina has been working with a number of bilateral and multilateral donors in the USA and BiH, including the UNDP, where she held positions related to the democratic and local governance for five years, SDC, Handicap International, etc. and has serves as an election monitor for the USA government in Georgia.

Sabina has published a book on European politics in local governance and the BiH local governance structure, and a number of articles in professional journals.
Sema Hosta

"Digital opens several doors at the same time for children; broadening their world, giving a chance to be a global citizen, helping them to increase awareness on their rights and how to translate their rights into their daily life. The challenge is to provide quality information, access and ensure equity."

Sema Hosta has been with UNICEF for the last 14 years. She is a digital refugee that has been fascinated by the digital world. Currently; she is the Chief of Communication for UNICEF Turkey, her focus is on increasing engagement especially with children and young people at all platforms including SM. She is working hard to convert 30+ age groups to be digitally connected and be able communicate with digital natives. She is one of the originators of the Child Rights Media Training and Syllabus Course which has been successfully implemented in Turkey and number of other countries. She has been working for children and women during the last two decades in a rapidly changing environment from manmade to natural disasters, service delivery to upstream policy level, and middle income to high income country level. Before joining to UNICEF she was working on USAID projects for women’s and reproductive health. She is a graduate of Hacettepe University with degrees in English Literature and Language and Education.

Serdar Okan

"I believe that information technology is one of the most important pillar behind innovation and education. It will offer equal opportunity to reach information for children more and more as connectivity even spreads to the most rural areas. We will definitely see its benefits in the coming decades."

Serdar Okan has been working for UNICEF Turkey Country Office since 2003 as a responsible person of Information and Communication Technology after 5 year experience in private sector. He has master degree in Computer Science from Hacettepe University and Business Information Systems from Bogazici University. He is particularly specialized on Information Security and Cloud Computing.



Sinem Vatanartıran
Currently an Assistant Professor at Bahçeşehir University, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Istanbul, Turkey. She holds a doctorate in Educational Administration. While doing her masters and doctorate degrees, she was actively involved in school settings holding different positions. She was the Head of the Curriculum and Assessment for Law and Engineering English Programs at Başkent University, Ankara. She became a teacher trainer for English language teachers after completing a course at St John and St Marks College with British Council scholarship at the same university. In 2000, she became the Head of Professional Development Office at Bahçeşehir University, where she trained teachers, provided professional feedback sessions upon lesson observations, and organized conferences. In 2002, she became the Director of Uğur Career Services Center and led the project of adapting Career Interest Inventory developed by John Holland into Turkish. She offered countless teacher training seminars all around Turkey for school counsellors, teachers and administrators. In 2005, she became the school principal of Bahçeşehir College’s High School and then established the first Science and Technology High School in Turkey in 2006. She became the general manager of Bahçeşehir Colleges in 2009. She designed and offered professional development sessions for teachers and school managers. She had a weekly column at a national paper, Vatan, on educational issues for a year in 2012. She has been a faculty member of Bahçeçehir University since 2011 and the Dean of the Graduate School of Education. 


Tobias Denskus

"From a research perspective, the (emerging) digital environment accelerates cultural shifts in organisations, fosters innovation and creates new opportunities for public advocacy in the context of C4D-key pillars that ensure that organisations can creatively engage with children and youth and work towards the fulfilment of child rights and advocate for new digital child rights."

Tobias Denskus is Associate Professor in Communication for Development at Malmö University in Sweden. His  research is taking place at the intersection of on peace building, anthropology, social media and digital governmentality. His current interest is on digital communication topics, e.g. development blogging, the use of Twitter in international policy arenas as well as critical research on TED talks and open data discourses. With regard to youth and the next generation of global citizens he is interested in the social entrepreneurism discourse, including debates on 'DIY aid', volunteering/voluntourism and the changing nature of development studies teaching. 

Tolga Yazıcı 

Dr. Yazıcı has an undergraduate degree in Business Administration, graduate degree in Business Management and doctoral degree in Communication Sciences. Worked as an entrepreneur and businessleader for 15 years in different industries in Turkey, Russia and Kyrgyzstan. He has been serving as founder and president of Plato Collage of Higher Education and International Plato University. 


Tuğba Asrak Hasdemir

"If I feel myself as a child, here is the most exciting opportuniy for me: Game, Game, Game... If we express it within the words of the CRC: "the right of the child to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child and to participate freely in cultural life and the arts". (art.31/1)"

Graduated from the Middle East Technical University, the Department of Political Science and Public Administration. Had M.S. and Ph.D. degree in the same department. Worked as a research assistant in the Faculty of Political Sciences, Ankara University between 1989-1997; gave lecture in the Faculty of Languages, History and Geography, Ankara University between 2003-2006. Worked as the human rights specialist in the Human Rights Institute of Turkey between 2000-2001. Still working in the Department of Public Relations,  the Faculty of Communication,  Gazi University.

In her area of interests, there are media education, media literacies, children rights and communicationhuman rights and democracy, public sphere and public communication, political communication and propaganda, e-government and public relations; information society in critical perspectives. Had different studies on these issues and also a book titled as Right to Know in Public Communication.

Took active part in the Project of the History Foundation of Turkey, titled Human Rights Issues in Textbooks: The Turkish Case, and wrote the chapter, Media Literacy Education and Human Rights: The Turkish Case, in the book edited within that Project. On the issue of media literacy education in current perspectives and in the Turkish case, also had different articles published and the studies presented in the national  as well as in the international congresses. As the Project Manager, conducted the Project supported by the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT), titled On the Nature and the Characteristics of the Relation of the Secondary School Children with Traditional and New Media and its Comparison-MEDCOM (MEDYAK) ,n 2013. Worked as a researcher and lecturer in the Project with UNICEF, titled The Child Rights Syllabus and Communication Education; in this respect, still lecturing the course titled “Children Rights and Communication” in her Faculty. 


Yonca Yıldırım

“Children’s equal and safe access to digital media, offers them the opportunity to freedom of expression and access to information.” 
Yonca Yıldırım is one of the communication consultants of UNICEF Turkey who supports UNICEF’s work through social media. She has been a part of UNICEF Turkey since July 2012 and since then she has dedicated herself for the realization of children’s rights in digital media. She holds a Master’s Degree in Environmental Psychology from Interior Architecture and Environmental Design department of Bilkent University and Post-graduate diploma in Sustainable Cities and Community Development from London Metropolitan University.


UNICEF Turkey Country Office, Yukarı Dikmen Mah. Alexsander Dubçek Cd. 7/106, 06450 Çankaya/Ankara. Telephone: +90 312 454 1000 Fax: +90 312 496 1461 E-mail: ankara@unicef.org