Middle East Technical University (METU) is one of the leading research universities in Turkey The overall volume of grants awarded to METU is the highest among the Turkish Universities, and research accounts for over 35% of the total income. METU has had the greatest share of the national research funds made available by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK) in the last five years, and it is the premier university of Turkey in terms of the number and volume of the EU Framework Programme (FP) projects. A wide spectrum of international COST, EUREKA, MEDA, NATO, NSF, UN, World Bank, Jean Monnet projects have also been carried out by METU researchers. (Further information about the research activities in the main campus can be found at the researchmetu.edu.tr site).
In short, research constitutes a major dimension of METU’s vision, and all national and international stakeholders perceive METU as a research oriented higher education institution.
Following the footsteps of the mother institution, METU Northern Cyprus Campus has mainly concentrated on undergraduate education and quality of student enrolment in the first three years of its establishment. As METU NCC shares the same mission and vision dimensions of the main campus in Ankara, research has soon taken its place in the agenda of both the administration and faculty. Consequently, the strategic planning activities initiated in the year 2007 designated the “research” as one of the activity areas of high priority, and METU NCC 2009 – 2014 Strategic Plan introduced Increasing Research Activities and Deliverables as the fourth strategic program with the following three goals:
Goal 1 – To determine prioritized areas of research for METU NCC, and to focus research activities in these areas
Goal 2 – To establish research collaborations with METU Ankara and regional, national and international institutions and produce research deliverables at international settings
Goal 3 – To initiate graduate programs
The strategic program portrays performance indicators, related measurable objectives and strategies associated with each of these goals.
While the implementation of the strategic program on research is going on, two focus areas have already emerged on the Campus: “Energy and Environment” and “Mediterranean Studies”. The three currently available graduate programs, Master of Science in Sustainable Environment and Energy Systems, Master of Art in English Language Teaching and Master of Science in Political Science and International Relations, help bringing together critical mass of researchers and resources around these focus areas. Academics may also select their individual research topic, and seek support from any source for their work. Currently, several other research and development activities, ranging from microfluidics to Latin American studies, from biomedical engineering to number theory, from microwaves to logistics, from polymers to earthquake and disaster management are going on, thus creating a lively and varied scientific and technological research environment on the Campus. Further information about our research activities can be found at the Campus research funded projects, TÜBİTAK funded projects and other externally funded projects pages.
At METU, research is a central requirement for the annual performance assessment and academic promotion of the faculty; and METU NCC provides some support schemes to foster research activities, such as the Campus funds made available for pump priming the research capacity of the newly recruited staff, publication award and conference support.