The Yunus Emre Institute has a wide range of activities worldwide to promote Turkish culture. The institute, which became operational in 2009, has 157 branches on five continents. It seeks to establish permanent cultural bonds in countries where it operates.
The institute has a five-pronged approach: cultural diplomacy, institutional capacity, science diplomacy, cultural interaction and Turkish courses.
An academy conducting important research on cultural diplomacy has been operational since 2016. Lectures at the academy are given by leading experts, academics, diplomats, bureaucrats, journalists, scientists, artists and nongovernmental organization (NGO) workers. One of its primary aims is to teach Turkish as a global language at home and abroad in light of international standards and scientific methodology. In this context, the foundation provides Turkish language courses with variations based on the age, requirement or understanding of the students.
Over the past decade, the institute has taught Turkish to some 68,000 students; when courses outside the cultural centers are calculated, the figure rises to 110,000. Currently, some 218,000 students from 194 countries learn Turkish via online courses. Turkish summer schools have taught the language to some 4,000 students from 130 countries. To ensure that Turkish language teaching meets a global standard, the foundation holds a Turkish Competence Exam. If students prove their competence, they are awarded a certificate, through which they can be exempted from studying in preparatory school in Turkey. Moreover, a Turkish competence certificate helps those looking for employment in Turkey. Around 6,000 people received this certificate from 2013 to 2018.
Yunus Emre Institute projects promote Turkey's scientific and academic research while cooperating with numerous academic establishments worldwide. With its "Turkology" project, the institute signed a protocol with 96 universities in 49 countries.