Cigdem is the founder of CCLegalCo and a strategic advisor on business and human rights and NGO operations.
She has more than 14 years of professional experience, including 8 years working on corporate law at international law firms in Turkey and the Netherlands.
She has a unique experience advising and leading efforts to improve, develop and implement sustainable management strategies, programs and projects for a broad client portfolio. Thus, Cigdem has worked with companies from range of sectors, local and international NGOs operating in humanitarian field and public-benefit agencies as well as undertaken a leadership position at the Center for Child Rights and Business, a reputable international non-profit enterprise, which advises businesses on child rights in supply chains.
She is the Co-Founder and Chairperson at Minerva Business and Human Rights Association (www.minervabhr.org), the first Turkish NGO with a central focus on business and human rights.
She also served as a Consultant in Giving Refugees a Voice Project, a pilot initiative funded by C&A Foundation which focused on informal Syrian refugee workers in garment supply chains in Turkey. Prior to this and whilst working full-time at a major international law firm, she volunteered at American Bar Association’s Rule of Law Initiative (ABAROLI). During her work at ABAROLI, she had designed and conducted legal awareness raising trainings for Syrian refugee communities.
Cigdem has a PhD degree in public international law (with a special focus on business and human rights), an LLM degree from Universiteit Leiden and a Bachelor’s degree in Law from Bilkent University. She is a practicing lawyer qualified in Turkey. She is also a certified auditor for SA8000.
Human Rights Law; Business and Human Rights; NGO Strategy, Management and Legal Compliance; Individual Claims & ECHR Applications
Ph.D. Istanbul Bilgi University, 2020 (Thesis: "A Right-Based Approach to Companies’ Human Rights Responsibility: Human Rights Due Diligence")
LL.M. Universiteit Leiden, 2012 (Thesis: "The Emergence of ICSID Arbitration in line with the Development of International Concession Agreement Era in Turkey")
LL.B Bilkent University, 2008
Istanbul Bar Association, admitted 2009
Women of Orange (Board Member)
Holland Alumni Network
Bilkent University School of Law Alumni Association
American Collegiate Institute Alumni Association
Turkish, English, Arabic