As part of the Slovak-Turkish joint initiative "Finding Common Grounds" whose objective is to share experience and information gained in Slovakia during the process of democratic transition and the EU accession, the second workshop was held at Istanbul Kültür University on the 19th of November. Within the scope of this project conducted with the partnership of TESEV Foreign Policy Program, Slovak Foreign Policy Association, GPoT Center and Turkish Daily News, two subsequent workshops will be organized until the end of 2008, one in Istanbul and the other one in Bratislava.
This workshop organized at Istanbul Kültür University aimed to discuss Turkey's possible role as a communication bridge between the East and the West and also to identify the sources of the misunderstanding and biased perception of the other on both sides of the East/West divide. During the meeting, the discussion on the perception of Turkey inside and outside the European Union as well as Europe's absorption capacity has been of vital importance. Additionally, Turkey's communication strategies and how they converge or diverge with the communication strategies of the Republic of Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and Czech Republic during their EU accession processes have been discussed. Finally, the National Convention on the European Union which has been established in Slovakia during the EU accession process has been analyzed.
The subsequent meeting of the joint initiative will take place at TESEV with the title "Strategic Importance of Turkey for EU Security" aiming to discuss the benefits of Turkey's EU membership pertaining to the neighborhood policy and security issues. The focus will be to identify the possible areas of cooperation between the EU and Turkey.