Israel Institute for Advanced Studies

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View of the main atrium in the Israel Institute for Advanced Studies building

The Israel Institute for Advanced Studies (IIAS or IAS in Israel) of Jerusalem, Israel (Hebrew: המכון ללימודים מתקדמים) is a national institution devoted to academic research in physics, mathematics, the life sciences, economics, and comparative religion. It is a self-governing body, both in its administrative function as well as its academic pursuits. It is one of the nine members of the symposium Some Institutes for Advanced Study (SIAS).


The IIAS is located at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, on the Edmond J. Safra campus at Givat Ram, where the National Library of Israel is located as well. The Institute brings together scholars from around the world to engage in collaborative research projects for periods of four to twelve months. Throughout over forty years of existence it has been dedicated to unrestricted academic research.

There are several academic centers of varying status known as "Advanced Study" Institutes throughout the world, but the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, United States, is the original Advanced Study Institute upon which all the others were modeled.[1]


Corinthian capital exhibit at the Israel Institute for Advanced Studies

The Institute for Advanced Studies in Jerusalem was founded in 1975 by Israeli mathematician Aryeh Dvoretzky, a winner of the Israel Prize for Mathematics. Professor Dvoretzky visited the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, USA several times and this inspired him to establish an IAS in Jerusalem in 1975. In March, 1976 Dvoretzky wrote:

The Institute is similar in concept to several existing Institutes of Advanced Study, notably the Princeton Institute. An IAS in Israel will fulfill a long-acknowledged need for an appropriate setting to encourage scientific and academic leadership, along with promoting the highest standard of research. The proliferation of universities in Israel, along with the overall trend toward mass higher education, has heightened the need for an IAS here in Israel. The inspiration and achievement of these Institutes are essential to strengthening and advancing Israel's scientific and academic landscape.[2]

In 1982, Yuval Ne’eman, Professor of Physics and Minister of Science, established the first School in Theoretical Physics at the Jerusalem IAS. Professor Steven Weinberg, Nobel laureate in Physics, was asked to become the director of the School, and he held this post for twelve years. Four additional Schools were established, based on the same model, in the following fields: Economics, Life Sciences, Jewish Studies and Comparative Religion, and Mathematics. Each School is headed by a preeminent scholar in his or her field.


  • Aryeh Dvoretzky (1975–1985)
  • Hanoch Gutfreund (1986–1989; 1990–1992)
  • Menahem Yaari (1989–1990)
  • David Shulman (1992–1998)
  • Alexander Levitzki (1998–2001)
  • Benjamin Z. Kedar, (2001–2005)
  • Eliezer Rabinovici (2005–2012)
  • Michal Linial (2012–present)[3]

Advanced schools[edit]

Aerial view of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem campus including the Institute for Advanced Studies (top left)

The Institute annually hosts five schools under the auspices of the Victor Rothschild Memorial Symposia. They are in the fields of Theoretical Physics, Life Sciences, Economic Theory, Jewish Studies and Comparative Religion, and Mathematics. Each lasts seven to twelve days.

Each School is headed by an internationally preeminent scholar, working alongside an Israeli co-director. At present, three of the five Schools are directed by Nobel laureates. Attendees include senior scholars, doctoral students, and postdoctoral researchers.

The Institute subsidizes participants in the form of travel grants, tuition or hotel expenses. The Israeli coordinator allocates scholarships to candidates and assumes responsibility for technical arrangements. Scholars have come to the institute from Western and Eastern Europe, South and North America, East Asia, and North Africa.

Directors of the advanced schools:

The IIAS also hosts conferences and lecture series, sometimes associated with schools, such as the Ada Lovelace Bicentenary Lectures on Computability during 2015–16.[4]


  1. ^ "HUJI Media Relations announcement". Israel: Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Retrieved 19 July 2015. 
  2. ^ "Aryeh Dvoretzky biography". MacTutor History of Mathematics. 
  3. ^ "Institute for Advanced Studies appoints new director, Prof. Michal Linial". Israel: Hebrew University of Jerusalem. 25 December 2012. Retrieved 19 July 2015. 
  4. ^ "Ada Lovelace Bicentenary Lectures on Computability". Ada Lovelace Day. 20 December 2015 – 31 January 2016. Retrieved 11 January 2016. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 31°46′41″N 35°11′46″E / 31.77806°N 35.19611°E / 31.77806; 35.19611