About me

I have a Ph.D in psychological counselling from Middle East Technical University (2006) and a first degree in the same field from Bosphorus University (2000). I have held research and teaching positions at Middle East Technical University in Turkey and Northern Cyprus, Florida State University in the US, Roehampton University in the UK, Chemnitz University of Technology in Germany, and University of Bamberg in Germany. In August 2017, I received Honorary Professorship at University of Bamberg.

My research focuses mainly on individual and cultural differences in wellbeing, happiness, and quality of life, as well as how technology affects human wellbeing. You can see the full list of of my publications here.

I currently live in London where I work as a freelance senior researcher (doing mostly user research), and a professional trainer. I collaborate with colleagues in University of Bamberg’s Psychology Department on joint research projects. I give seminars and run workshops in various topics including wellbeing and happiness in daily and work life, emotion regulation, and diversity. I’m the founder and the editor in chief of Ajans Psikoloji which publishes (in Turkish) news on contemporary research in psychology.

Currently I’m participating in a project funded by ITEA. The project, Massive Online Course Tablet (MOOCTAB) aims to create a tablet-based platform for life-long learning using an on demand MOOC platform. I also coordinate a user research study at Humanayz. The project aims to understand the needs, motivations, and behaviours of individuals in relation to interpersonal problems. The team is working on technological solutions to assist adults in managing interpersonal issues.

Among my current scientific research studies are 1) a meta-analysis study on the effectiveness of positive psychological interventions on wellbeing of individuals, 2) understanding the effect of emotion expression on social networking sites, especially with experimentally induced increased micro blog writing, on wellbeing and social connectedness, and 3) cross-cultural differences in the effects of emotional regulation training programs on wellbeing.

Latest Seminars and Workshops

  • The thing we call happiness (March 2017, London)
  • Relationship between happiness and religion (December 2016, Windsor, UK)
  • Positive psychological interventions: (How) do they really work? (October 2016, University of Bamberg, Bamberg, Germany)
  • Context matters: Effective communication across borders (June 2016, Possible, London, UK)
  • Context matters: Effective communication across borders (August 2016, Path, London, UK)
  • Using positive psychology at work (September 2016, PPG, Istanbul, Turkey)
  • Happiness in daily and work life (May 2015, Turkcell, Northern Cyprus)
  • Happiness (June 2015, Nesin Mathematics Village, Izmir, Turkey)
  • Being a happy worker (October 2015, IKSahne, Istanbul, Turkey)
  • Using positive emotions to boost happiness (November 2015, Middle East Technical University, Northern Cyprus)
  • Being a happy worker (November 2014 and January 2015, Turkcell, Istanbul, Turkey)
  • Positive psychology applications in education (March 2013, Adana, Turkey)
  • Lesson: Happiness (February 2013, Bursa, Turkey).
  • Cultural sensitivity (April 2012, Korto Psychology, Istanbul, Turkey)
  • Happiness (October 2012, Middle East Technical University, Northern Cyprus).
  • The science of happiness (December 2012, Middle East Technical University, Northern Cyprus).
  • What makes us happy? Latest research on individual and cultural differences in happiness (May 2011, University of Bamberg, Germany).
  • Effective communication, effective relationships (April 2011, Essen Ruhr Parents Association, Germany).
  • Well-being and happiness: Personal and cultural factors (March 2010, Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany).
  • Why do we make bad decisions? The role of irrational thoughts (December 2010, ROI Team, London).
  • Parenting styles and shyness (November 2010, Roehampton University, London).

Awards and Honours

  • Turkish Academy of Sciences Publication Award (as the editor of the book “Group Counselling”), 2013.
  • Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2009
  • Erasmus Staff Exchange, Visiting Faculty Scholarship; Malmö University, Sweden, 2008.
  • Publication Incentive Award, Yeditepe University, 2008 and 2009.
  • Thesis of the year award; METU Institute of Social Sciences, 2007.
  • Publication Incentive Award, The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey, 2007, 2008, and 2009.
  • Travel grants for scientific meetings, The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey, 2006 and 2007.
  • 10-month research fellowship in the USA, METU, 2004.