Experts

President

  • Yohanan Plesner

    President

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    served as the first director-general of Kadima and as one of its Knesset members from 2007 to 2013.

Management

  • Dr. Jesse Ferris

    Vice President, Strategy

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    Jesse Ferris joined IDI in the fall of 2008 as Vice President of Strategy. His responsibilities include international programming and development. Jesse received his Ph.D. in Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University in 2008. His research interests include democracy and foreign policy, international politics of the Middle East, and Israeli national security.

  • Prof. Yuval Shany

    Vice President, Research

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    Vice President of Research at the Center for Democratic Values and Institutions, and the Center for Security and Democracy

    Prof. Shany's research interests include; international courts, human rights, laws of war, cyberlaw, and legal aspects of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He is former dean of the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he holds the Hersch Lauterpach Chair in International Public Law. In 2018, he became a Chairman of the UN Human Rights Committee..​

  • Prof. Yedidia Z. Stern

    Vice President, Research

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    Professor Yedidia Z. Stern is a full professor and former dean of the law faculty of Bar-Ilan University.

Center Directors

  • Daphna Aviram-Nitzan

    Director, Center for Governance and the Economy

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    the former head of the migration research unit at Aharon Meir Center for Banking and Economic Policy at Bar-Ilan University and the former director of the economic research division at the Manufacturers Association of Israel (MAI).

     

  • Dr. Shuki Friedman

    Director, Center for Religion, Nation and State

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    A member of the Faculty of Law of the Peres Academic Center, Dr. Shuki Friedman served as secretary of the Locker Committee for Examining the Defense Budget, chairman of the government committee on the sanctions against Iran, and head of the international and foreign law department for the legal division of the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office.

  • Adv. Alona Vinograd

    Director, Center for Democratic Values and Institutions

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    Vinograd led legal battles to increase public transparency and battled against corruption in various issues including education, health, transportation and more. She has more than a decade of experience in the social sector, and in 2015 she was awarded the Rappaport Prize for Women Generating Change in Israeli Society.

     

Senior Fellows & Program Directors

  • Admiral (Res.) Amichay (Ami) Ayalon

    Senior Fellow, Amnon Lipkin-Shahak Program on National Security and Democracy

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    Admiral (Res.) Ami Ayalon is a former director of the Shin Bet, commander of the Israeli Navy, government minister and member of Knesset.

  • Adv. Eli Bahar

    Researcher, Amnon Lipkin-Shahak Program on National Security and Democracy

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    Eli Bahar holds an MA in public administration from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and teaches courses in the Law Department of Tel Aviv University. He served as the legal advisor to the Shin Bet from 2006 to 2011.

     

     

  • Prof. Amichai Cohen

    Senior Fellow; Director, The Amnon Lipkin-Shahak Program on National Security and Democracy

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    Professor Amichai Cohen is a member of the Faculty of Law at Ono Academic College. He earned his LL.B. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and his LL.M. and LL.D. from Yale Law School at Yale University.

  • Prof. Yuval Feldman

    Co-Director, Labor Market Reform Program; Researcher, Proportionality in Public Policy Program

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    Professor Yuval Feldman is a full professor on the Faculty of Law at Bar-Ilan University and a former fellow of Institutional Corruption Lab at the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University.

  • Prof. Talia Fisher

    Senior Fellow, Center for Religion, Nation and State, and Director, Human Rights and Judaism Program

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    Talia Fisher is a professor and has served as Assistant Dean for Research at the Faculty of Law at Tel Aviv University. Her research focuses on the theory of evidence. In addition, it deals with the question of the limits of the market, with an emphasis on the private supply of legal institutions. Talia was a research fellow at the Harvard Law School and a researcher at Harvard University's Edmond Safra Center for Ethics.

  • Dr. Amir Fuchs

    Head, Defending Democratic Values Program and Researcher, Amnon Lipkin-Shahak Program on National Security and Democracy

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    Dr. Amir Fuchs holds a doctorate from the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and is a lecturer in the Politics and Communication Department at the School of Government and Social Sciences at Hadassah Academic College.

  • Prof. Tamar Hermann

    Academic Director, Guttmann Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research

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    A faculty member of the Political Science Department at the Open University of Israel, Professor Tamar Hermann has co-edited the monthly Peace Index (with Professor Ephraim Ya’ar) since 1994, and has edited the annual Israeli Democracy Index since 2010.

  • Nasreen Hadad Haj-Yahya

    Director, Arab-Jewish Relations Program

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    Nasreen Hadad Haj-Yahya holds an MA in education and social geography and is a doctoral candidate in the History Department at Tel Aviv University. The topic of her doctoral dissertation is, “The contemporary impact of social space barriers on the inaction and future orientation of young Arabs aged 18–22.”

  • Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer

    Senior Fellow, Center for Security and Democracy, Co-director, Amnon Lipkin-Shahak Program on National Security and Democracy

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    Professor Kremnitzer is a professor emeritus of the Faculty of law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, former dean of the Faculty of Law, and director of the Israeli Press Council.

  • Prof. Shahar Lifshitz

    Academic Co-Director, Human Rights and Judaism Program

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    Dean of the Faculty of Law at Bar-Ilan University, is considered a leading scholar of family law and responsible for shaping civil law theory in that field.

  • Dr. Gilad Malach

    Director, Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

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    Co-author of the Master Plan for Ultra-Orthodox Employment (along with Doron Cohen and Haim Zicherman) and editor of the Statistical Report on Ultra-Orthodox Society in Israel (in copperation with Dr. Lee Cahaner and Dr. Maya Choshen). He was director of implementation of the Gabison-Meidan Covenant Project at the Avi Chai Foundation and content manager of the Committee on Sharing the Security Burden in the Eighteenth Knesset.

     

  • Prof. Yotam Margalit

    Senior Fellow, Co-Director, Labor Market Reform Program

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    Professor Margalit headed a large, experimental cross-national study of the investment decisions of multinational firms, a project that he developed and carried out in collaboration with the World Bank and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization.

  • Prof. Gideon Rahat

    Senior Fellow; Director, Political Reform Program

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    Professor Rahat is a faculty member of the Political Sciences Department at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and an International Fellow at the Center for the Study of Democracy at the University of California, Irvine.

  • Prof. Eytan Sheshinski

    Senior Fellow, Center for Governance and the Economy

  • Dr. Tehilla Shwartz Altshuler

    Senior Fellow and Head of the Democracy in the Information Age Project

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    A board member of the National Press Council and lecturer at the Federmann School of Public Policy and Government at the Hebrew University. She is a former head of the research department at the Israeli Second Authority for Television and Radio, a former research fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and a visiting scholar at Harvard’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies.

  • Adv. Talya Steiner

    Project Manager and Researcher, Proportionality in Public Policy Program

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Research Staff

  • Dr. Hadar Arditi-Babchuk

    Researcher, Proportionality in Public Policy Program

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    Dr. Hadar Arditi-Babchuk has a doctorate from the Interdisciplinary Program in Brain Sciences at Bar-Ilan University and a master's degree in Epidemiology from Tel-Aviv University.

  • Rachel Aridor-Hershkovitz

    Researcher, Media Reform Program

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    Adv. Rachel Aridor Hershkovitz is a researcher in the Israel Democracy Institute’s Media Reform program and a research fellow at the Haifa Center for Law and Technology at the University of Haifa.

  • Rabbi Dr. Yehuda Brandes

    Researcher, Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

  • Prof. Orna Braun-Lewensohn

    Researcher, Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

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    An associate professor and head of the Conflict Resolution and Conflict Management program at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. She received her Ph.D. in 2007 from the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences at Vrije Universiteit Brussels.

     

  • Prof. Benjamin Brown

    Research Fellow, Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

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    An expert on ultra-Orthodox Judaism and its religious formation. The author of the book The Chazon Ish, Brown did his post-doctoral work at Harvard University.

  • Brig. Gen (Res.) Moni Chorev

    Researcher, Amnon Lipkin-Shahak Program on National Security and Democracy

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    Brig. Gen. (res) Moni Chorev served in the IDF as a division commander, commander of the Givati Brigade and commander of the IDF's Officers' Training School.

  • Yair Ettinger

    Researcher, Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

  • Aluma Florsheim

    Research Assistant, Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

  • Dr. Chen Friedberg

    Research Fellow, Political Reform Program

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    Dr. Chen Friedberg has co-written many papers published by the Israel Democracy Institute.

  • Prof. Motti Golani

    Researcher, Human Rights and Judaism Program

  • Dr. Eliezer Hadad

    Researcher, Human Rights and Judaism Program

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    Researcher, Human Rights and Judaism Program

    Dr. Eliezer Hadad is the coordinator of the MA program in Biblical Studies at Herzog College and a lecturer in Jewish philosophy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is the author of The Relationship between Nature and the Torah in Maimonides’ Writings, as well as the policy papers Minorities in the Jewish State and The Status of Women in the Rabbinical Courts.

    Areas of expertise

    The principle of equality in the Jewish sources; Maimonidean philosophy; Jewish philosophy.

  • Adv. Edna Harel - Fisher

    Researcher at the Center for National, Religion and State

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  • Ella Heller

    Research Coordinator, Guttmann Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research

  • Ron Hermon

    Research Assistant, Labor Market Reform Program

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    Ron Hermon is studying for his BA in psychology and law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

  • Dr. Isaac Hershkowitz

    Researcher, Religion and State Program

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    Dr. Isaac Hershkowitz, who engages in thorough analyses of rabbinic literature in general and halakhic literature in particular, integrates advanced methods of Jewish studies and sociology in his work.

  • Dr. Keren Weinshall Margel

    Research Fellow, Proportionality in Public Policy

  • Dr. Raphael Ventura

    Researcher, Guttmann Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research

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    Dr. Raphael Ventura is the director of the data archive of the Guttman Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research at the Israel Democracy Institute.

  • Omer Selivansky

    Research Assistant, Labor Market Reform Program

  • Dr. Moran Yarchi

    Researcher, Amnon Lipkin-Shahak Program on National Security and Democracy

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    Dr. Moran Yarchi received her Ph.D. in 2012 from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She is a senior lecturer at the Sammy Ofer School of Communications, Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) in Herzliya.

  • Dr. Lee Cahaner

    Researcher, Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

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    A social geographer and the head of the Interdisciplinary Studies Department, and a senior lecturer in the Geography and Environmental Studies Department at Oranim Academic College of Education.

  • Dr. Ofer Kenig

    Research Fellow, Political Reform Program

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  • Dr. Nissim Leon

    Researcher, Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

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    A senior lecturer in the Sociology and Anthropology Department at Bar-Ilan University, an MA advisor in the department, and acting head of the organizational consulting project.

     

  • Colonel (Res.), Adv. Liron A. Libman

    Researcher, Amnon Lipkin-Shahak National Security and Democracy program

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  • Dr. Guy Lurie

    Researcher, Defense of Democratic Values Program and Media Reform Program

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    Dr. Guy Lurie is a lawyer and received his PhD in History from Georgetown University (2013). Dr. Lurie is a former coordinator of the Shamgar Commission for the Formulation of Rules of Ethics for Members of the Government, and served as a post-doctoral fellow on the Faculty of Law at the University of Haifa.

  • Rotem Madzinni

    Research Assistant, Democracy in the Information Age program

  • Dr. Asaf Malchi

    Researcher, The Ultra-Orthodox in Israel Program

  • Adv. Lila Margalit

    Researcher, Arab-Jewish Relations Program and Proportionality in Public Policy Program

  • Eran Mizrahi

    Research Assistant, Defense of Democratic Values Program

  • Nadiv Mordechay

  • Marina Motsenok

    Research Assistant, Proportionality in Public Policy Program

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    Marina Motsenok is a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Education at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She received her BA in sociology and education and her MA in organizational sociology from the Hebrew University.

  • Dr. Yaffa Nahumi

    Researcher, The Ultra-Orthodox in Israel program

  • Liat Netzer

    Researcher, Proportionality in Public Policy Program

  • Adv. Lina Saba-Habesch

    Researcher, Democratic Principles Program

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    Adv. Lina Saba-Habesch holds an LL.M. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and is a doctoral candidate in the joint interdisciplinary program of the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University and the Free University of Berlin. The topic of her doctoral dissertation is the "Torture of security suspects."

     

  • Arik Rudnitzky

    Researcher, Arab-Jewish Relations Program

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    Mr. Rudnitzky is a PhD student who has been researching Arab Israeli issues for more than a decade. His fields of expertise cover political, national and social developments in Israel's Arab society; Jewish-Arab relations; and government policies on Arabs in Israel. Rudnitzky holds MA (magna cum laude) and BA degrees in Middle Eastern History from the Faculty of Humanities and an MBA degree from the Faculty of Management, both at Tel Aviv University. 

  • Adv. Oded Ron

    Researcher, Arab-Jewish Relations

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    Adv. Oded Ron holds an LL.M. from the Human Rights Cathedral at College of Management Academic Studies and LL.B. from the Faculty of Law at the Bar-Ilan University
    Interned at the legal department at ACRI: Association for Civil Rights Israel

  • Fadi Omar

    Research Assistant, Guttmann Center for Public Opinion and Policy Researcher

  • Dr. Eyal Pe'er

    Research Associate

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    Research Fellow at the Israel Democracy Institute; senior lecturer at Bar-Ilan University Business School; expert in decision-making and behavioral economics; founder and head of the Consumers Behavioral Insights Laboratory, www.cobilab.org

  • Dr. Benny Porat

    Researcher, Human Rights and Judaism Program

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    A senior lecturer on the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the director of the Matz Institute for Jewish Law. After completing his doctorate at the Hebrew University, he was hosted as a post-doctoral fellow by the University of Toronto

  • Prof. Ilana Ritov

    Consultant, Proportionality in Public Policy Program

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    Professor Ilana Ritov of the School of Education at Hebrew University of Jerusalem is a consultant for IDI's Proportionality in Public Policy Project. She serves as a resource for the project's research team on issues of decision making and cognitive biases.

  • Dr. Idit Shafran Gittleman

    Researcher, Center for Security and Democracy

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    A Post-doctoral candidate in the Faculty of Law at Tel-Aviv University, Idit Shafran Gittleman holds an MA in philosophy from the University of Haifa.

  • Dr. Assaf Shapira

    Researcher, Political Reform Program

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    Assaf Shapira received a PhD in Political Science from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He was a post-doctoral fellow at the Leonard Davis Institute for International Relations at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and at the Centre d’études européennes (Center for European Studies) at the Sciences po (Paris). His research largely focuses on political representation, political parties, the role of money in politics, and reforms in Israel's public service.

  • Mr. Yair Sheleg

    Researcher, Center for Religion, Nation and State

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    A researcher, journalist, author, and publicist, Yair Sheleg has been an astute observer of the religious-Zionist world for many years.

  • Dr. Asaf Wiener

    Research Associate

  • Adv. Gilad Wiener

    Researcher, Religion, Nation and State program

  • Rachel Zaken

    Researcher , Center for Governance and the Economy

  • Shahaf Zamir

    Research Assistant, Political Reform Program

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    Research Assistant, Political Reform Program

  • Prof. Reuven (Ruvi) Ziegler

    Researcher, Defense of Democratic Values Program

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    IDI Researcher Prof. Reuven (Ruvi) Ziegler explores questions of immigration, asylum, and citizenship as part of IDI's Democratic Principles project. He is a Lecturer in Law at the University of Reading.

Professional Staff

  • Naim Abu Najma

    Custodian and Gardener

  • Matan Amira

    Digital Manager and a website Manager

  • Idit Baharad

    Information and Project Manager

  • Kimberley Bancroft

    Assistant to Vice President, Strategy

  • Helya Bar-Mag

    Secretary

  • Dana Baruch

    President's Office

  • Ayelet Benny

    Administrative Assistant, Center for Democratic Values and Institutions

  • Shirli Ben-Tolila

  • Anat Bernstein

    Head Editor, IDI Press

  • Dr. Dana Blander

    Researcher and Director of Supplementary Studies

  • Galit Cohen

    Bookkeeper, Customer Service

  • Michal Cohen

    Director of Marketing and Media

  • Liron Daniel

    Digital and Media Coordinator

  • Herzel David

    Transportation and Deliveries

  • Helly Froimovich

    Marketing Coordinator, IDI Press

  • Adv. Nirit Gilboa Ben Bassat

    Contracts and Acquisitions

  • Anat Goldman

    Chief Financial Officer

  • Rachel Green

    Assistant to Vice President, Strategy

  • Amir Koren

    Spokesperson

  • Zehava Keinnan

    Administrative Assistant, Theatre Offices

  • Ella Levy

    Salary Accountant

  • Danae Marx Callaf

    Director of International Communications

  • Orit Maybruch

    Assistant to the President

  • Arnon Meir

    Director of Impact and Government Relations

  • Muhamad Mughad

    Custodian and Repairs

  • Amarilli Narkiss

    Director of Finance

  • Gila Noam

    MarCom and Grant Writer

  • Deena Pulitzer

    Director of Development

  • Maya Raphael

    Development Coordinator

  • Maayan Ravitz-Shalom

    Assistant to the Vice President, Strategy and Human Resources Coordinator

  • Daphna Rivlin

    Secretary

  • Doron Sela

    Government Relations

  • Rony Shabat

    Assistant to the Directors of Centers

  • Tamar Shaked

    Text Editor, IDI Press

  • Hagit Sharon-Agmon

    Head, Conference Department

  • Nadav Shtechman Polischuk

    Layout and Design, IDI Press

  • Lili Zadok

    Bookkeeper