Education council opening 11 research centers
Programs purpose to “reinforce Israel’s intellectual capacities and promote synergy among Israel’s leading research centers."
The grounds of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Photo: Courtesy of the Hebrew University
The Council for Higher Education is expanding its research excellence program
this year to include 11 more research centers, the council announced on
The program, known as ICORE – the Israeli Centers for Research
Excellence – began following a government decision in March 2010. Its purpose,
according to the council, is to “reinforce Israel’s intellectual capacities and
promote synergy among Israel’s leading research centers: universities, colleges,
hospitals and research institutes.”
When the program started operating in
October 2011, the first group of four centers focused on the fields of cognitive
science, algorithms, solar energy and genetics of human diseases.
11 research groups, four will engage in research in the humanities, and seven
will focus on the exact sciences, such as engineering, life sciences and
The centers, which will be located within universities, will be
established this year, but the council explained that their operation dates
would be determined later. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem will manage four
The research units involve collaboration among professors from
universities and private colleges across the country.
Among the groups
are one studying Jewish culture in the modern era, headed by a Hebrew University
professor; one on education and the new information society, headed by a
lecturer at the University of Haifa; and one that will engage in mass trauma
Others will research the fields of quantum physics,
astrophysics, genetics, biophysics and medical technology, as well as plant
adaptation to the changing environment.
In total, 26 research groups
working in 17 fields applied to join the program.“The high quality of all the
proposals, particularly of the winners, is a testimony of honor for research and
researchers in Israel,” the council wrote in a statement.
The text added
that the new centers of excellence would “promote innovative and groundbreaking
research in a variety of fields, consolidate collaborative research between
institutions in the country and internationally and will help in the absorption
of new excellent researchers,” as well as “pave the way for training future
generations of outstanding researchers in the country.”