the Knesset's role

Publications Regarding the Knesset's role


Special Project

The Judicial Overhaul and Anti-Democratic Initiatives

Judicial overhaul initiatives, along with other anti-democratic measures, have continued to be promoted by the government and the coalition in the Knesset. This document outlines the various actions taken in government that weaken the Israeli judiciary and democracy at large.


Disqualification of Knesset Lists and Candidates: Q&A

Disqualifying candidates and lists for the Knesset violates one of the most fundamental democratic rights, the right to vote and to be elected. Therefore, it must be done with the utmost care, judgment and objectivity. Who can reject candidates and lists for the Knesset, and on what is the criteria? IDI experts answer these questions.


Speaker of the Knesset's Resignation – What Happens Next?

Speaker of the Knesset Yuli Edelstein has resigned so as not to comply with the Supreme Court ruling to hold elections for a new speaker - what happens next? IDI’s Dr. Amir Fuchs explains

Press Release

Speaker of the Knesset's Resignation - Statement

Yohanan Plesner, President of the Israel Democracy Institute, reacted to the Speaker of the Knesset Yuli Edelstein's resignation


Parliaments Around the World

As the Knesset struggles to resume its work, IDI took a look at how parliaments around the world are putting into place processes and mechanisms that enable them to operate during the coronavirus pandemic so they can fulfill the vital role they play in democracies.

Press Release

The Knesset Must Resume its Work Immediately


Just as in parliaments around the world - the Israeli Knesset must resume its work.



Private Member Bills: A Review and Recommendations

Since the early 2000s, we have seen an unusual rise in the number of private member bills submitted to the Knesset


What will the new Knesset look like?

All in all, the human landscape of the Knesset continues a trend of an improved representation, which better reflects the heterogenous Israeli society. Still, several groups are still under-represented, mainly women, non-Jews, young adults and “Russians”.

Policy Statement

Opinion: Repealing the Law to Dissolve the Knesset

An opinion submitted today (June 26th) to MKs, the Attorney General, and the Knesset Legal Advisor on behalf of the Israel Democracy Institute, opposes the proposal to repeal the law to dissolve the Knesset and seeks to take the proposal off the agenda.


So Few MKs, So Much to Do: The Knesset is Dysfunctional

Lawmakers sit on too many committees and propose too many laws. The fix starts with government members quitting the Knesset


The 20th Knesset in Numbers

The current paper presents data on the parliamentary work of the MKs and parties in the outgoing Knesset. All the information is based on data taken from the Knesset archives and the Knesset’s Research and Information Center which are open to the public

Press Release

What is the Public’s Opinion on the Override Clause?

A special survey conducted by the Guttman Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research at the
Israel Democracy Institute finds: The majority of the Israeli public fears that implementation of the Override Clause by the Knesset will give unlimited power to politicians and lead to an increase in political corruption


The Knesset at Age 69: Still Struggling for the Public's Trust

While members of Knesset represent Israel's diverse society, they're still seen as self-interested and ineffectual by the public.

IDI Presents Outstanding Parliamentarian Award to MKs Elharar and Folkman

Knesset Speaker MK Yuli Edelstein: "It's time to bring the rules of the game back to the Knesset

Press Release

Knesset Proposal to Impose Sanctions on Non-Attendance at Parliamentary Committee Meetings:

IDI scholar recommends adopting a proposed amendment to Basic Law: The Knesset, aimed at penalizing Knesset committee members who are invited to testify or submit information but do not comply.

As MK Expulsion Bill is Brought for Third And Fourth Reading ...

Today, the MK Expulsion Bill will be brought to the Knesset plenum for its third and fourth reading. The bill is an amendment to the Basic Law on the Knesset, which will enable the expulsion of a legally elected MK from Knesset by a vote of 90 out of 120 MKs.


Press Release

Israel Democracy Institute Scholars Ahead Of Monday's Vote On The MK Suspension Bill:

Ahead of tomorrow's expected first reading of the MK Suspension Bill on the Knesset floor, Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) scholars sent an updated policy statement to members of Knesset, calling on them to vote against the bill.

Press Release

At The Close Of The Winter Session Of Knesset: Only 17% Of Israelis Believe The Knesset Properly Represents The Public

As the Knesset winter session comes to a close, and a year into the 20th Knesset, the image of the Parliament and its members continues to suffer. On Tuesday, a new caucus will be launched with the purpose of proposing ways to improve the image of the Knesset and its members. 

Press Release

IDI President Yohanan Plesner Reacts to Decision to Push Forward MK Suspension Bill

"The MK Suspension bill is an embarrassment to the Knesset."

Press Release

IDI Scholars on the MK Suspension Bill: Unacceptable, Invites Political Witch Hunts

IDI researchers come out against MK suspension bill.


The 2015 Knesset: Can New Brooms Make a Clean Sweep?

Israel's 20th Knesset will have 39 new members. Will this infusion of new blood improve the Knesset's performance? Dr. Chen Friedberg explores some of the issues that may impede the ability of these new Knesset members to "clean up" the Knesset.

Policy Statement

Legal Opinion on the "Zoabi Bill"

A summary of a legal opinion on a proposed amendment to Basic Law: The Knesset that was submitted by Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Dr. Amir Fuchs to the Ministerial Committee on Legislative Affairs.


Heart vs. Head: The Case of Hanin Zoabi

Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Admiral Ami Ayalon argue that while the heart has difficulty defending MK Hanin Zoabi's freedom of expression, the head demands that we object to the decision to remove her from parliamentary activity for six months.


Only a Constitution will Ensure Good Governance in Israel

IDI researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs asserts that the only way for Israel to ensure good governance is by adopting a constitution.


Who Will Guard the Guards?

IDI Researcher Dr. Chen Friedberg warns that the government's prolonged inability to appoint a permanent head of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee may be causing serious harm to the very foundations of Israeli democracy.


Regulating Bedouin Settlement: A Disengagement Plan for the Negev

Ronit Levine-Schnur analyzes the Bill to Regulate Bedouin Settlement in the Negev 5773–2013, warns that it seems to be motivated by an exaggerated fear of a Bedouin takeover of the Negev, and offers an alternative approach. 


A Weak and Inefficient Knesset

In a democracy, parliaments are supposed to not only pass laws but also engage in oversight; that is, to ensure that legislation is implemented and identify deficiencies in the government’s work.


Proper Representation - Let's Play!

As the Knesset celebrates its 69th birthday on Tuesday, Jan. 30, here is a chance to see how you score on knowledge of Israel's parliament. What did Israel's lawmakers do before joining the Knesset? What did they do after leaving? what are the benchmark requirement to becoming an MK? How many are currently serving their first term? Let's play!


Improving the Way the Knesset Functions

A set of reforms must be implemented so that Knesset members' supervisory ability over the government will be enhanced.


Increasing the Size of the Israeli Knesset

The Knesset is one of the smallest parliaments in the world, in terms of legislators per capita. As a result, the effectiveness of the Israeli parliament is diminished, especially regarding the important task of overseeing the executive.


What Do Parliamentary Aides Think of the Work of Members Of Knesset?

Researchers surveyed aides in 40 Knesset offices. Of those, 92% of aides says they think MKs do not come prepared for Knesset committee meetings and that the Knesset is not succeeding in properly supervising the government (95%).


Happy Birthday, Knesset!

As the Knesset, Israel’s legislature, marks its birthday, IDI takes the opportunity to consider two aspects about it: its members’ social composition and its relative size.