The Team / Senior Fellows
Professor Stern is President of the Jewish People Policy Institute and a full professor in the Faculty of Law at Bar-Ilan University. He is an alumnus of the Kerem B’Yavneh hesder yeshiva (1973-1978); holds a law degree (summa cum laude) from Bar-Ilan University (1982), and a doctorate in corporate law from Harvard University (1986).
Stern has served as dean of Bar-Ilan University’s Faculty of Law (1994-1998), and was a Senior Fellow at the Israel Democracy Institute (1989-2000). For a decade he served as the IDI’s Vice President for Research.
His areas of expertise are corporate law (merger and acquisitions, corporate finance and corporate governance), and public law (constitutional law, religion and state, human rights, law and halacha or Jewish law). He has lectured and been a visiting scholar at universities abroad (including Harvard, Columbia, Brandeis, and Princeton), and was Distinguished University Professor at Monash University in Australia (2009-2011).
Stern has served as advisor to the Knesset Constitution, Law, and Justice Committee; has participated in numerous committees and public entities, among them the Commission of Inquiry on the Treatment of Residents of Gush Katif (2009); the National Committee for Civic Studies (2009-2011, committee chair); the Takana Forum for the prevention of sexual harassment in the religious community (founding member); the Government Committee for Equality in the Burden of Service (2012); the Committee for Regulating Governance in Higher Education (2014). He has served on the boards of multiple companies, including (currently) that of Bank Leumi.
Stern has been awarded the Zeltner Prize for Excellence in Legal Research (2009), and the Gorny Prize for Outstanding Activity in Public Law (2012).
Professor Stern has written and edited over twenty books; has published over fifty research articles in five languages; is the coeditor (with Professor Sagi) of the journal Democratic Culture (19 volumes to date); regularly publishes essays and articles in the Israeli and international press, and is interviewed by the Israeli and international media on issues of law and society, religion and state, Judaism and democracy, Jewish identity and Israeli culture.
Born in England (1955), married to Dr. Karen Friedman-Stern, father of eight.
Read more by Prof. Yedidia Z. Stern
An analysis of the proposed comprehensive counter-terrorism bill that was prepared by IDI’s Terrorism and Democracy research team and submitted to the Ministry of Justice.
Dr. Shuki Friedman is the Vice President of the Jewish People Policy Institute. He is a member of the Faculty of Law at the Peres Academic Center and formerly served as secretary of the Locker Committee for Examining the Defense Budget. He was also chairman of the government committee on the sanctions against Iran, and headed the international and foreign law department for the legal division of the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office.
Areas of expertise
The relationship of religion and state; processes of religionization; secular-religious-ultra-Orthodox relations; ultra-Orthodox employment; the defense budget; Islamic law; international law; the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement.
Read more by Dr. Shuki Friedman
Ita Alcalay worked at the Finance Minister’s Bureau for over 3 years with Prof. Yaacov Ne’eman and Dan Meridor. From 1990-1995 she worked with Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu, and served at the Foreign Ministry from 1987 until 1993. She has a B.A in Political Science from Bar-Ilan University.
Head of the Pluralism and Democracy in Israel Project and the Structured World Dialogue Process
Shmuel Rosner is a Tel Aviv based columnist, editor and think tank fellow.
He is a fellow at The Jewish People Policy Institute (JPPI);
He is the non-fiction Editor for Israel’s largest Publishing House, Kinneret-Zmora-Bitan-Dvir;
He is Senior Political Editor for the Jewish Journal, and he writes the popular blog Rosner’s Domain;
He writes a weekly column for The International Herald Tribune \ New York Times and for Israel’s Maariv Daily.
Rosner was previously a columnist for The Jerusalem Post, and was Chief U.S. Correspondent, Head of the News Division and Head of the Features Division for the Israeli daily Haaretz. He wrote for many magazines, including Slate, Foreign Policy, Commentary, The New Republic, The Jewish Review of Books, and others.
Rosner’s book “Shtetl Bagel Baseball, on the Wonderful Dreadful State of American Jews” was published in Israel by Keter (Hebrew, 2011) and became a bestseller.
Read more by Shmuel Rosner
Sharren Haskel: On the Israeli Lobby to Promote Relations With Christian Communities Worldwide
The Challenge of Peoplehood: Strengthening the Attachment of Young American Jews to Israel in the Time of the Distancing Discourse
Ambassador Avi Gil Served as the Director General of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs from April 2001-November 2002. He also served as Director-General of Israel’s Ministry of Regional Cooperation, Deputy Director-General of the Peres Center for Peace; the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff, Media Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Finance, and Executive Policy Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs. He has been closely involved in Israel’s policy-making and peace efforts, including the negotiations that led to the Oslo Accords and the peace treaty with Jordan. He is a Senior Fellow at the JPPPI and a was a close advisor to President Shimon Peres.
Read more by Ambassador Avi Gil
The International System: U.S. status and performance and the implications for Israeli strategic resilience
John S. Ruskay came to UJA-Federation in 1993 and held several positions before being appointed Executive Vice President and CEO in October 1999, serving in this role until July 2014. After graduating from the University of Pittsburgh in 1968, Dr. Ruskay earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in political science at Columbia University. He served as Educational Director of the 92nd Street Y from 1980 to 1985, and Vice Chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America from 1985 to 1993.
Dr. Ruskay has written extensively and speaks nationally on how the American Jewish community can most effectively respond to the challenges and opportunities of living in an open society; the critical role of Jewish philanthropy; and the central role of community. He has served as a senior consultant to the Wexner Foundation and The Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies, and has chaired the Publication Committee of the Journal of Jewish Communal Service and the Professional Advisory Committee of the Hornstein Jewish Professional Leadership Program.
Dr. Ruskay has received numerous honors, including the Bernard Reisman Award for Professional Excellence from Brandeis University’s Hornstein Program, the Mandelkorn Distinguished Service Award from the Jewish Communal Service Association of North America, and honorary doctorates from the Jewish Theological Seminary (2011), Hebrew Union College (2103), and Yeshiva University (2014).
The Ruskay Institute for Jewish Professional Leadership is being established to provide in-service professional enrichment for the next generation of communal leaders.
Dr. Ruskay is married to Robin Bernstein; together they have five children and seven grandchildren.
Read more by Dr. John Ruskay
The Growth of the Haredi Communities in the Diaspora: Expanding Civic and Political Engagement
Head of the de-legitimization project
Brigadier General (Res.) Herzog is a senior fellow at JPPI and currently heads an extensive project on confronting the de-legitimization phenomena. He rose through the military ranks to become head of the IDF’s strategic planning division and one of Israel’s prominent experts on strategic, military and intelligence matters.
Over the last decade General Herzog has held senior positions in the office of Israel’s Minister of Defense, under four ministers and was the Chief of Staff to Minister Ehud Barak. In those positions, he was at the center of Israeli decision-making on all key strategic, defense and political issues. General Herzog is also a military fellow at the Washington Institute, where he published extensively on Middle Eastern affairs. General Herzog is the son of the late president of Israel, Chaim Herzog.
Read more by Brig. Gen. (Res.) Michael Herzog
(עברית) אחראי על דסק אירופה במכון
Senior Fellow at JPPI, Dov Maimon leads the “Grand Strategy toward Islam” project, the “Israel-Diaspora New Paradigm” project and the Institute’s activities in Europe.
Among his action-oriented work, he is a member of the Advisory Committee for Improving access to Ultra-Orthodox to Higher Education chaired by Professor Manuel Trajtenberg. He is also the author of the Action Plan for bringing the developing mass migration of French Jews to Israel. Commissioned by governmental agencies, the plan was adopted by the Israeli Cabinet on June 22nd 2014.
Born in Paris, he earned a B.Sc. from the Technion (Haifa, Israel), a MBA from Insead (Fontainebleau, France), a M.A in Religious Anthropology and a Ph.D. in Islamic and Medieval Studies from the Sorbonne University. He is a laureate of the prestigious prize “Grand Prix du chancelier des universites 2005” awarded to the best French PhD work in Literature and Human Sciences. He is also a graduat of the Mandel School of Educational Leadership. Formerly an High-Tech industry entrepreneur, Dov is teaching at the School of Business Administration of the Ben Gurion University.
Read more by Dr. Dov Maimon
The Growth of the Haredi Communities in the Diaspora: Expanding Civic and Political Engagement
STEVEN W. POPPER, (Ph.D., Economics, UC Berkeley, 1985; B.S. summa cum laude, Biochemistry, U of Minnesota, 1976) is a RAND Senior Economist and Professor of Science and Technology Policy in the Pardee RAND Graduate School. He is also director of RAND’s Israel Initiative. He has published research on the economics of innovation — particularly how organizations both public and private identify and incorporate technological change. He led RAND’s first Summer Institute, a week-long workshop on science, technology and U.S. economic competitiveness. From 1996 to 2001 he was the Associate Director of RAND’s Science and Technology Policy Institute (S&TPI.) He provided research and analytic support to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and other agencies of the executive branch. His work included projects on the economic and social returns to basic research, assessing critical technologies (including principal authorship of the Fourth U.S. National Critical Technologies Review,) policy analyses of national innovation systems, evaluations of federal R&D portfolios relevant to the Global War on Terror, determining the S&T capabilities required for a prospective Department of Homeland Security, technical barriers to international trade (for the National Institute of Standards and Technology,) federal R&D portfolio decisionmaking (for the National Science Board and the World Bank,) and Presidential transition documents on S&T issues of national importance.
Dr. Popper is currently leading projects on better integration of technology assessment into transportation planning for the Transportation Research Board and has recently competed studies on energy strategy in Israel and science and technology-based economic development in Mexico City. He has now begun a new project to work with Israel’s police on domestic policing issues. He was active in founding projects of the RAND Pardee Center for Longer-Range Global Policy and the Future Human Condition. This included co-authorship of the flagship study, Shaping the Next Hundred Years, which provides a new methodological framework for decision making under profound uncertainty that has been applied to an increasing set of policy issues. In particular, he has advised doctoral dissertations applying these concepts to issues in R&D planning and S&T policy. Dr. Popper has conducted research for, and has served as consultant to, several non-U.S. governments as well as multilateral international organizations such as OECD and the World Bank on issues of technology planning, industrial restructuring, and regional economic development. Prior to joining RAND he worked as a researcher in physical chemistry and enzymology, as Country Account Officer for Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania and Yugoslavia at Bank of America, and as consultant to the World Bank on issues of industrial restructuring in East Europe. He has also been elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, is a member of the AAAS Policy Council representing the Industrial Science and Technology section, and is a Charter Member of the Pacific Council on International Policy.
Read more by Prof. Steven W. Popper
History of the Jewish Civilization and head of JPPI’s work regarding India and China.
S.Wald was born in 1936 in Milan, Italy. He grew up in Basel, Switzerland where he studied social sciences, history, and history of religions, graduating in 1962 as Ph.D. In 1964 he joined the Paris-based OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) where he stayed until his retirement in 2001. His career spanned education, technological innovation, science and technology policy, energy research policy and biotechnology policy. He was Head of the OECD/DSTI Biotechnology Unit. He joined the JPPPI in 2002 and worked on Jewish/Israeli relations with China; science and technology; and the history of Jewish civilization. Currently he reviews India-Israel-Jewish People links.
Three Reports written for JPPPI:
– China and the Jewish People – Old Civilizations in a New Era, Jerusalem 2004.
– “Science and Technology and the Jewish People”, JPPPI Annual Assessment 2005, Jerusalem 2005.
– Jewish Civilization at the Crossroads – Lessons from the History of Rise and Decline, to appear in 2010.
Three Research Papers written outside JPPPI:
– “China and Israel”, Encyclopedia Judaica, Second Edition, ed. Fred Skolnik, Vol. 4, Farmington Hills, 2007.
– “The ‘Confucianisation’ of the Jewish Community of Kaifeng: Jewish and Non-Jewish Historical Perspectives”, The Jews in Asia – Comparative Perspectives, ed. Pan Guang, Center of Jewish Studies Shanghai, The Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, 2007.
– “Chinese Jews in European Thought”, Youtai – Presence and Perception of Jews and Judaism in China, ed. Peter Kupfer, FASK, Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, ed. Peter Lang, Frankfurt am Main, 2008.
Read more by Dr. Shalom Salomon Wald
Head of the Annual Assessment project
Dr. Shlomo Fischer teaches sociology in the School of Education at Hebrew University and at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.He is also currently a research fellow at the Van Leer Institute. His research interests include the nexus of religion, politics and class in Israel, contemporary religion and the sociology of the Jewish people. He has published extensively on radical religious Zionism and the West Bank settlers as well as on the Shas movement.
Fischer has worked in the field of education for the past 25 years. In the past 10 years he has worked in the field of religion, democracy and tolerance. He has edited (together with Adam Seligman) The Burden of Tolerance: Religious Traditions and the Challenge of Pluralism (Hebrew; HaKibbutz Hameuchad and the Van Leer Institute, 2007) which addresses these issues. From 1996-2007 he was the founder and Executive Director of Yesodot – Center for Torah and Democracy which works to advance education for democracy in the State-Religious school sector in Israel and was also one of the founders and is on the Board of the International Summer School for Religion and Public Life which is based in Boston, Mass. He is a graduate of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership in Jerusalem.