The most important factor influencing the rise of social systems is the production and organization of knowledge. BISAV is a research and educational institution that tries, on the one hand, to understand main dynamics of contemporary world and, on the other hand, to contribute to finding the ‘roots’ of the Turkish society in order to build a sound future upon these roots. What lies beneath the current crises of not only Turkey but also all non-Western societies is the failure to create an ‘intellectual tradition’. BISAV aims to transcend the psychological and intellectual barriers that make it difficult to overcome this problem.
It is possible to establish a global system wherein the relationship between individual and society and the one between society and nature are in harmony with each other. BISAV aims to provide an intellectual atmosphere in which the epistemological, spiritual and artistic foundations of such a system can be freely investigated.
To spend incessant effort in the reproduction, evaluation and spread of universal, rational and professional knowledge within a liberal and tolerant environment of research and discussion; to apply the fruits of knowledge for the benefit of the humanity; and to support the talented men and women of science and thought, who are involved in this endeavor.
Foundation for Sciences and Arts was founded in 1986. Three years later, a series of seminars in social and natural sciences and scholarships, all of which have continued until the present day, were initiated in line with its mission. In seminars, academics, artists, and writers, known to be specialists in their own fields, have participated in creating a free environment in which Turkish youth is encouraged to reflect on the existing paradigms of knowledge in a systematic fashion. After moving to its central building complex located in Vefa, Istanbul in 2001, seminars and research programs attained a more systematic structure attracting several thousand students every year.