James P. Shenton Assistant Professor of the Core Curriculum, Political Science

Member, Committee on Global Thought

Turkuler Isiksel is James P. Shenton Assistant Professor of the Core Curriculum at the Department of Political Science at Columbia University. She holds a Ph.D. in political science from Yale University and works primarily in contemporary political theory. In her work, Isiksel focuses on the ways in which descriptive and normative categories tailored to the nation-state apply to institutions that wield political power beyond that context, such as regional organizations, international economic regimes, and transnational courts.

Professor Isiksel is currently at work on a book manuscript tentatively entitled Europe’s Functional Constitution, which evaluates the extent to which constitutionalism, as a normative and empirical concept, can be adapted to supranational institutions. She addresses this question in the light of the European Union’s legal order, arguing that the economically driven process of European integration has brought into being a qualitatively distinct form of constitutional practice that cannot be understood in the light of the conventional rights-based and popular sovereigntist models of constitutionalism.

Her other research interests include the evolution of ideas about commerce and international politics in eighteenth century political thought, as well as theories of sovereignty, delegated governance, citizenship, cosmopolitanism, constitutional theory, and Turkey-E.U. relations.

Before joining the political science faculty at Columbia, Professor Isiksel held a Jean Monnet postdoctoral fellowship at the Global Governance Program at the European University Institute in Florence. She holds an undergraduate degree in Politics (M.A. Hons) from the University of Edinburgh.

During the 2014-2015 academic year, Isiksel served as a LAPA/Perkins Fellow at Princeton University’s Law and Public Affairs Program. In Summer 2015, she will be a visiting research fellow at the Justitia Amplificata Centre for Advanced Studies at Goethe-Universität in Frankfurt-am-Main. In Fall 2015, she will serve as an Emile Noël Fellow at the Jean Monnet Center for International and Regional Economic Law and Justice at NYU School of Law.


Select Publications


  • Ph.D., Political Science, Yale University
  • M.A. Hons, Politics, University of Edinburgh
  • B.A., Politics, University of Edinburgh