Ş. İlgü Özler is the Director of the SUNY Global Engagement Program in NYC in NYC and an Associate Professor of Political Science and International Relations at SUNY New Paltz. Her research is on the relationship between comparative political institutions and civil society. She focuses on political parties, non-governmental organizations and social movements. She has done research on the urban slums and squatter areas in Turkey, Mexico and Chile. Her recent work has been on Turkish civil society organizations and the Justice and Development Party in Turkey. Her teaching covers the fields of comparative politics and international relations. For the past decade, she has been taking students to the United Nations for briefings every Friday for 10 weeks during the Spring semester. She teaches courses on intergovernmental organizations, global civil society, Middle Eastern politics and Latin American politics. Her recent work has been on environmental issues. She is a special consultant to the Earth Child Child institute a United Nations Economic and Social Council accredited non-governmental organization. She is the founder and coordinator to the Mid Hudson Valley Amnesty International Chapter, the President of the United Nations Association of the Hudson Valley, and serves on the Board of the World Affairs Council of the Mid-Hudson Valley. Özler received her Ph.D. in Political Science from University of California, Los Angeles (2003).