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İdil Bilgin's Journey


High school

Private Uskudar American Academy 


International Diploma

UC, Berkeley, International Trade 


University of Leicester, Museum Studies 


I am a children’s book author who has dedicated herself to the enhancement of public awareness about cultural heritage preservation in my home country, Turkey. I am an educator who strongly believes in the healing effect of bonding with cultural heritage on both the societal and individual levels. I have turned this belief into my professional mission. Upon completing my post-graduate degree on Museum Studies, at the University of Leicester, I have decided to pursue this career at the intersection of the fields of education and conservation. Since then, I have committed myself to enhancing the bond between the society and the field of conservation. I place this so-called “magical public formula”, namely conservation, at the center of my studies and applications and thus use an alternative or non-mainstream approach to promote heritage advocacy in my country. My initial experience in the field has been to create a graduate course named “Conservation of Culture" and to start teaching it at Boğaziçi University. After a short while, I took a "Children's Books"; course at Koç University and decided that the biggest impact could be created by raising awareness in children at earlier ages. That was when I decided to write children’s books on cultural heritage conservation. My first book “Treasure Hunt in Konya” (“Konya'da iz Peşinde”) won the 2015 Research Award granted by Koç University VEKAM (Koç University Vehbi Koç Ankara Research Center).


Following that milestone, I combined the know-how accumulated through my post-graduate studies with my practical experience in the field to formulate my very own methodology: “Emotion Focused Education on Cultural Heritage Preservation”. My motto in creating this approach was “a child will only be curious if he/she likes a subject; if there is curiosity, there is internalized learning”. The question to ponder on at this point has been how to create life-long positive emotions in generation Z kids, about a subject that typically seems “distant” and “dull” to them? It was right at this point that I started to analyze in detail 21 st century skills and learning tools that would enhance these skills. I created “Emotion Focused Education on Cultural Heritage Preservation” by combining the tools that support my mission. I can describe this methodology briefly as an objects and gamification-based
application of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics). As of today, I base all my products and applications on my methodology. I run children’s workshops and teacher trainings, as well as a middle-school course. In addition, I design and apply museum activity kits (Tamirevi Children’s Activity Kit) and workshop activity kits (Doctors of Cultural Heritage and Secrets of a Mural). In addition, I apply workshops at schools which pick “Treasure Hunt in Konya” as a reference book for their social sciences course.


As for the societal and individual healing I mentioned at the beginning, I believe bonds with heritage can provide an answer to many of the current conflicts and unrest in both societies and individuals. At the societal level, if we can contribute to the creation of a generation whose heritage preservation attitudes drive from a universal perspective of identity and solidarity, we can be one step closer to social welfare. At the individual level, if we can integrate a value as long-lasting as cultural heritage into today’s demanding age of consumption, technology and information, we can imagine individuals who are more at peace. In fact, we can even imagine enhanced levels of creativity and spirituality, enabled by the warmth and depth that
interaction with cultural heritage objects can provide. Approaching the issue from this perspective, I pursue my work with the hope of contributing to both the societal and individual levels of the issue.

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