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Professor Eviatar Matania

Eviatar Matania is a professor at the School of Political Sciences, Government and International Affairs at Tel-Aviv University, where he heads the MA program of Security Studies and the MA program of cyber politics and government (under inception).
Matania is also an Adjunct Professor at Oxford's Blavatnik School of Government, where he convenes the Cyber Module at the MPP (master of public policy) program at Blavatnik school of Government.
Matania was the founding head and former Director General of the Israel National Cyber Directorate (INCD) in the Israeli Prime Minister office, where he reported directly to the Prime Minister, and was responsible for Israel’s overall cyber strategy, policy and its implementation to defend the Israeli civilian sector. On 31 December 2017 he completed his six-year term.
During the last two years Prof. Matania has been co-heading the Smart Systems (AI) National Initiative to recommend the PM and the government about a national plan to promote Israel as a global power in AI.
Professor Matania has been a thought leader in policies of technologies, from both national and organizational perspectives, cyber strategies and national security issues, participating in the foremost international fora, and engaged by leading global companies and global VCs, by top league universities (Harvard Kennedy School, Columbia, George Washington University), as well as by top government officials and formal committees (such as the US Senate Committees and Sub-Committee and the Israeli National Security Advisor).
Professor Matania is a graduate of the Israeli military-academic prestigious Talpiot Program and he holds a B.Sc. in Physics and Mathematics (honors, Hebrew University of Jerusalem), a M.Sc. in Mathematics with an expertise in Game Theory (honors, Tel Aviv University), and a Ph.D. in Judgment and Decision Making (Hebrew University of Jerusalem).


Major Gen. (Ret.) Prof. Isaac Ben-Israel

Isaac Ben-Israel studied Mathematics, Physics and Philosophy at Tel-Aviv University, receiving his Ph.D. in 1988. He joined the Israel Air Force (1967) and  has served continuously up to his retirement (2002). He headed the IAF Operations Research Branch, Analysis and Assessment Division of IAF Intelligence, and was the Head of Military R&D in  Israel Defence Forces and Ministry of Defence (1991-1997). In January 1998 he was promoted to Major General and  appointed as Director of Defence R&D Directorate in IMOD. During his service  he received twice the Israeli Defence Award. After retirement from the IDF Isaac Ben Israel joined the University of Tel-Aviv as a professor and was the head of Curiel Centre  for International Studies (2002-2004), the head of the Program for Security Studies (2004-2007) and a member of Jaffe Centre for Strategic Studies (2002-2004). In 2002 he founded and headed the Tel-Aviv University Workshop for Science, Technology and Security

Professor Udi Sommer

I am associate professor at the Political Science Department at Tel Aviv University and a member of the Israeli Young Academy for Science. I joined the faculty at Tel Aviv in Fall 2010 after teaching at the University at Albany: State University of New York at the political science department there (PhD, Stony Brook University, 2007; MA Tel Aviv University, 2002; BA The Hebrew University, 1999). I am member of the Scientific Council of the Blavatnik Interdisciplinary Cyber Research Center. In 2016-7 I am at Columbia University of New York as Israel Institute Visiting Professor.


My broad research interests are in American and comparative politics, public law and political methodology. I specialize in the analysis of political institutions and legal evolution. My book about agenda setting on the Supreme Court of the United States was published in 2014 with Palgrave-MacMillan and my book about sexual minority rights in a comparative perspective is forthcoming with SUNY Press in 2016. My popular nonfiction book about Israeli parents in America was published in Hebrew in 2010 and was broadly covered by the media. My scholarship has appeared in publications such as Comparative Political Studies, The Law and Society Review, Journal of Empirical Legal Studies, Political Studies, Judicature, and the Justice System Journal.


I am a recipient of several grants and fellowships including the Marie Curie Grant from the European Union, Fulbright Doctoral Fellowship and the National Science Foundation Dissertation Improvement Grant. My work has been presented at the annual meetings of the American, European, Midwest, Southern and Western Political Science Associations. I have teaching experience at the graduate and undergraduate levels in Tel Aviv University, the University at Albany and Stony Brook University. Classes include at the PhD level-Math for Political Scientists, Civil Rights and Liberties, Research Methods, Survey Class in Judicial Politics; at the MA level-Advanced Statistics for Public Policy; and, at the BA level-Comparative Politics, American Supreme Court, Constitutional Law and Politics: USA and Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.

Dr. Yael Shomer

Yael Shomer is a senior lecturer in the School of Political Science, Government and International Affairs, at Tel-Aviv University. Her broad research interests are in comparative politics and democratic institutions, and she specializes in legislative politics, electoral systems, candidate selection processes, parties and party systems and quantitative methodology. Shomer’s research has been published in The American Journal of Political Science, Comparative Political Studies, Political Behavior, Legislative Studies Quarterly, and elsewhere. She is a recipient of several grants and fellowships including the Israel Science Foundation grant, and the Marie Curie Reintegration Grant from the European Union.



Dr. Amir Lupovici

Dr. Amir Lupovici is a senior lecturer in the Department of Political Science at Tel Aviv University and a research fellow in the Blavatnik Interdisciplinary Cyber Research Center.  He was a faculty fellow in the School of International Service at American University (2017-2018) and a visiting scholar in the Centre for Conflict Resolution of International Conflicts at the University of Copenhagen (2014). Dr. Lupovici is the author of The Power of Deterrence: Emotions, Identity and American and Israeli Wars of Resolve (Cambridge University Press, 2016). His research interests include deterrence, cyber (security), securitization and ontological security. His publications have appeared in International Studies Quarterly, Review of International Studies, International Studies Review, International Studies Perspectives, and Foreign Policy Analysis.

Dr. Dan Schueftan

Dr. Dan Schueftan is the Head of the International Graduate Program in National Security at the University of Haifa, the Director of the National Security Studies Center at that University (2008-2018) a Visiting Professor (2012-2014) at Georgetown University in Washington DC and a lecturer at the Israel Defense Forces National Defense College. For the last five decades he has been a consultant to Israeli decision makers and to the top echelon of Israel's Prime Minister's Office, Foreign Ministry, Defense Ministry, the IDF and The National Security Council.

Dr. Schueftan is regularly briefing decision makers, senior officers and defense and intelligence officials  and lectures at leading universities, research centers and think-tanks in Europe, North America and Asia. He  has published extensively on National Security and contemporary Middle Eastern history.

Dr. Amit Kleinmann

Dr. Kleinmann is a graduate of Industrial Engineering and Management Information Systems from the Technion Israel Institute of Technology, holds an M.Sc. in Computer Science from the Weizmann Institute of Science, and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Tel-Aviv University (TAU).

He has been coding and hacking from the age of 13, and is now a lecturer at TAU and at IDC Herzliya where he teaches computer security courses at the engineering school and at the computer science faculty.

Dr. Kleinmann has held various R&D positions in the computer industry for over 20 years, and has been active as a leader in various international industry consortiums and standardization bodies including ITU-T, TM Forum, ATIS, CableLabs, and IETF/IRTF. 

Dr. Kleinmann has 8 patents to his credit and has authored several papers in the fields of computer communications and information security.

Dr. Guy Paltieli

Dr. Guy Paltieli is a Polonsky Academy Fellow at The Van Leer Jerusalem Institute. Dr. Paltieli Received his PhD in Politics at The University of Cambridge where he studied the meaning of solitude in democratic thought, suggesting that in an online environment solitude should be an alternative to privacy. His current project “Privacy, Presence and Participation: Changing Political Concepts in a Visible Democracy” focuses on the way new forms of technology change the meaning of political concepts. His research focuses mainly on datafication as a new civic virtue, new forms of virtual representation and the politics of data since the end of the Second World War.

Mr. Avner Halperin

Avner Halperin is an entrepreneur and executive in the fields of Digital Health and Big Data Analytics.  He was CEO of EarlySense for 15 years bringing the company from idea stage to developing a breakthrough sensing and predictive technology, over one million patients served, and tens of thousands of lives saved.  Previously Avner was CEO of Emmunet, VP Marketing at Radcom (NASDAQ: RDCM), and R&D team leader at Eldat Communications (acquired by Pricer(PRIC.ST)).  Prior to that he was Department Head of an R&D Unit in the Israeli Defence Forces Intelligence Corps where he won the Intelligence Innovation Award.

Avner earned an M.Sc. in Applied Physics from Tel Aviv University and an MBA from the MIT Sloan Fellows Executive MBA Program.  He has been teaching courses on economy and entrepreneurship in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.  His research papers and 32 US Patents in the field of sensor and data analytics have been cited over 3,000 times. 

Dr. Jacob Rimer

Dr. Jacob Rimer is a senior consultant and lecturer on AI, Big data, Cyber and Biology. He holds a Ph.D in Biology (Immunology) from the Weizmann Institute of Science, and has been engaged for the past decade in scientific research at the academy in parallel with working with the government and high-tech companies. Previously, he was a CTO in Verint systems Ltd, after serving as a CTO at the Israeli Prime Minister office, where his responsibilities included assessing new technologies and leading research activities. In this capacity he managed numerous various studies, either in-house or in collaboration with academic researchers or start-ups. Prior to that, Jacob held several senior R&D and product management positions in startups and worked for Golden Gate Bridge Fund as a VC fund manager.

Jacob is a graduate of both elite 8200 "Shchakim" and IDF MAMRAM programs. Jacob holds a M.Sc. in Machine learning (Weizmann Institute of Science), and has extensive knowledge and experience in Machine learning, Big data and Artificial intelligence. He also has more than 30 years of experience in diverse software disciplines and in interdisciplinary areas: Computer science, Biology, Mathematics, and more.

Dr. Nir Hassid

Dr. Nir Hassid is a Post-Doctoral fellow in the Department of Political Science, Government, and International Relations at Tel Aviv University and a lecturer in the University’s Security Studies program and International School. He completed his doctoral studies in the Department of International Relations at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he studied the stability of international security regimes in the nonproliferation domain. His current research focuses on interactions between technology and international relations in areas that include cyber and geopolitics, technology governance, and national power.

Dr. Amit Ashkenazi

Amit Ashkenazi, Adv.

Amit Ashkenazi is a law and technology expert, supporting public and private organizations on legal, policy and compliance aspects of cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, data protection, cloud use and ICT procurement. Amit is an adjunct lecturer on cyber law and policy at the University of Tel Aviv, University of Haifa and Reichman University. Amit is a member of ISO SC-42 WG1 expert group on AI, and recently advised  the Israeli Ministry of Science and Technology on artificial intelligence regulatory policy. Amit was the legal advisor of the Israeli National Cyber Directorate (INCD) at the Prime Minister's Office between 2014 and 2022. Before INCD, Amit was Head of the Legal Department in the Israeli Law Information and Technology Authority in the Ministry of Justice (ILITA), Israel’s Data Protection Authority. In both positions Amit set up and led the legal departments and held responsibility for legal opinions, legislation, and international legal relations. Before ILITA Amit worked in the Legislation and Legal Counsel Department (Private Law) in the Israeli Ministry of Justice, on electronic commerce, e-government, and copyright.

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