Meeting inspiring alumni
When the Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization was established in May 2015, it was decided that its primary goal would be to strengthen the ties not only between the alumni and the University, but also among alumni themselves. Such bonds are mutually beneficial – influential and inspiring alumni enhance the reputation of the University, while an outstanding university raises the value of every graduate's degree.
Tel Aviv University alumni hold key positions in every area of Israel's economy - an enormous asset which the Organization wishes to highlight, cultivate and promote. One of its first initiatives was launching a series of Encounters with Inspiring Alumni. In these unique meetings successful TAU graduates from different fields share experiences with fellow alumni about their journey to the top.
Most meetings consist of two parts. First, the main speaker tells his/her inspiring story, which is then followed by a special enrichment or entertainment program with top lecturers and/or performers.
The unique series provides TAU alumni with an enjoyable platform for networking and personal enrichment in a friendly and pleasant social atmosphere.
Although every inspiring alumni brings his/her unique experience to life, offering a different kind of personal story and inspiration, they all share a desire to give back, a joy in returning to their roots, and the satisfaction of inspiring their fellow alumni to grow personally and professionally.
New events are continually advertised on the event calendar in this website and on the Facebook page of the Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization.
We look forward to seeing you with us!
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, in collaboration with the Yolanda and David Katz Faculty of the Arts, held an event for the new year for the TAU’s leading alumni community, on Entrepreneurship, Technology, Art and everything in between.
The event was opened by Amos Elad, VP of Public Affairs, Resource Development & Alumni Affairs at TAU, who said:
"I would like to thank all of you for joining and coming to this event and for being part of the Tel Aviv University alumni community, which allows our thousands of current students, the next generation of TAU alumni, to continue to develop and research and be whoever they want to become."
Prof. Eran Neuman, dean of TAU’s Yolanda and David Katz Faculty of the Arts, led the guests on a tour in the The Genia Schreiber Art Gallery through the exhibition "Primary Sources", which included various displays from the faculty's fields of research and creation. In his speech, later in the evening, he noted that "even in an era of advanced technology, we see that we cannot do without the art that develops a mankind’s creative thinking.
Our faculty promotes thinking outside the box, and creativity based on historical knowledge and in-depth research. We are proud and happy to establish the Center of Israeli Arts, which includes the archival collections of leading artists who worked here."
The event included a panel, with the participation of:
- Gigi Levy Weiss, General Partner, NFX, Alumnus of TAU’s Coller School of Management
- Sigalit Landau, Israeli Artist, specializing in Sculpture, video Art and installations
- Roni Gilat-Bahrav, moderator of the panel, International Senior Director & MD Christie's (Israel) Ltd. 20th Century Art specialist, Alumna of TAU’s Faculty of the Arts and Faculty of Social Sciences
Gigi Levy Weiss noted that:
"In my opinion, every artist is a type of entrepreneur, because they take something that burns inside them and carries it out despite all the difficulties, and on the other hand, every entrepreneur is a type of artist, because they take what they want to create, and executes it in their own unique way, which is often Very different from the advice they receive from the environment.
The connection between technology and artistic creation is an area that fascinates me. Sigalit Landau has been using various technologies for many years, but we are currently experiencing an acceleration in the use of machine learning in the creative process, in various production technologies, in digital art and in the representation of ownership of art through NFTs. All of these are in the swing of development.'
"There is a problem with the consumption of art by the younger generation - art is supposed to evoke emotion, provoke intellectual curiosity and take us out of our comfort zone, while TikTok videos have been engineered by thousands of engineers to release as much dopamine as possible in the brain and lead you to watch the next video and the next. It will be interesting to see how the younger generation who grew up like this manage to consume more complicated works of art.
Just 3 days ago, a painting called "Théâtre D'opéra Spatial" won at the Colorado State Fair 2022, which turned out to have been created by the artist Jason Allen who used a machine learning program called Midjourney. In the future, as programs will know how to produce visual images, the thing that will constitute the uniqueness of an artist is the choice of software, its 'training' and the sentence that the artist will enter into the software to create the most unique image.
I don't think the introduction of AI will replace the creative world, but it will certainly enrich it.”
While playing live with the software Dall-E, Gigi Levy-Weiss and the artist Sigalit Landau tried to create works of art based on sentences they invented at that moment, and Sigalit pointed out how much respect this technology gives the spoken words, in a way that could become the great hour of poetry.
To the question of what the future of the art world is in the next decade, Gigi Levy-Weiss answered:
"In the past, before the industrial revolution, art was only the property of the rich. After the internet revolution, there was an expectation that art would be for everyone, but on the contrary, art became a more elitist and closed club that only caters to those with big money. I think this cannot be the future of art, and believe that the way our children will consume art - digital, online, in the Metaverse, produced by or with the help of machine learning - will be completely different from what we know today, which may lead to true democratization."
Siglit Landau wanted to mention that behind every sketch in the wonderful exhibition now on display at the gallery there was/is an Israeli or an immigrant artist who apparently experienced a situation that is not simple and does not support creative work, and it is important to remember that. Culture is struggling and an artist needs a lot of persistence to realize and continue to create under conditions that in many cases seem impossible.
"I invented a new word that plays with the words Entrepreneurship and Contemplation in Hebrew - it comes from what I plot with the desire to initiate, although sometimes entrepreneurs have the ability to be more creative than artists.
Artists, or at least I - sometimes don't know how to come and ask for things. I'm used to giving everything right from the start to later maybe get something back from society, especially since sometimes the museums don't even have a budget for racks to hang my works on. But art is not necessarily a political act, but simply a desire to do something because it will be really cool and it burns in me to find out if it could be realized successfully, and we need to find a way to finance it.'
Among the alumni who attended the event:
- Dafna Meitar-Nechmad, Chairwoman of the Tel Aviv University (TAU) Board of Governors
- Dov Kotler, Chief Executive Officer at Bank Hapoalim
- Yossi Ben Shalom, Co-Founder, Co-Owner and DBSI Investments Ltd.
- Aviad Meitar, Businessman, Social entrepreneur, and a philanthropist. Co-founder and Chairman at ‘Music for Dialogue’, and his spouse Dr. Ravit Cohen-Meitar, Executive Director of the Eli Hurvitz Institute of Strategic Management
- Tamar Landesberg, VP Business Development at Sano
- Adi Ofek, CEO of the Mercedes-Benz Tech Hub in Tel Aviv
- Adv. Ran Fuhrer, currently serves as VP of business development at the Neopharm Group. Serves as a Board Member at Bezeq, Israel's largest and leading Telecommunications group, Representing the controlling Shareholder, who arrived with his spouse Dr. Odelia Fuhrer, Medical Doctor Specializing in pediatric surgery and a TAU alumna as well
- Anat Starik-Dahan, Deputy CEO of the Setai, Herbert Samuel & Orchid Hotels Group
- Karen Schwok, Owner, Founder and CEO of Lucid Investments, Alumna of the Coller School of Management
- Dan Karmon, CRO, Temdrop
- Keren Mimran, Founder, VP Business Development & Marketing at Edete Precision Technologies for Agriculture
- Sigal Naim, Founder of "Haverim" (Friends), a psychological institute dedicated to helping mainly children and adolescents who are interested in improving their social skills in a professional and supporting environment.
- Amir Schor, Entrepreneur, Manager and Business Development
- Guy Rosen, Vice Chairman at Tnuva
- Ori Israely, Managing General Partner at Magenta Venture Partners
- Oded Agam, Managing Partner & Co-Founder at NextLeap Ventures
- Ziv Ben-Barouch, Founder and CEO of Pereg Ventures
- Tal Menipaz, Founder&CEO of Foriland Investments
- Lina Rabin, Israeli Prime Minister’s Office
- Lisa Shiloach-Uzrad, CEO at Shaked and Dolev Ltd.
- Shmulik Leshem, CEO of TBC Group
- Erez Bahat, Co-CEO at EquaWeb
- Ilan Avital-Zorman, Chairman at Nu Tek Medical
- Nurit Rosiansky Laufer, Co-Owner and CEO at Synergy Integration Ltd.
- Yoel Feldman, Co-Founder of AVIA home
- Eran Ron, Founder and Chairman of Rinsberg Holding Ltd.
- Yariv Mozer, Film Director and Producer, owner of ‘Mozer Films Ltd.’
- Eyal Assa, Chief Business Officer at Prisma Photonics
And many others
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, hosted Adv. Daniel Wolfson, Lawyer, Mountaineer, first Israeli woman to conquer the summit of Mount Everest alumna of TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law, who gave an online lecture to about 400 TAU alumni in our latest Webinar.
Prof. Yishai Blank, dean of TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law and alumnus of TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law and Faculty of Humanities, greeted the viewers and noted, among other things, the importance of the Tel Aviv Berkeley LL. M. program in the faculty (the same program of which Daniel Wolfson is an alumna) and mentioned that the time to sign up to the program is now, as registration is currently open.
Adv. Daniel Wolfson enthusiastically shared her inspiring story and shared her many insights on the way to the summit of Mount Everest, after suffering a skiing accident:
- "Every person has their own Everest. Don't be afraid to dream and don't be afraid to make your dreams come true."
- "Dare to do things, even without the environment’s approval. You must persevere and build a solid plan."
- "it is possible to dare, to dream big and fulfill your biggest and scariest dreams, If you really want to."
- "Just like in mountain climbing, going back does not mean failure, or that we are not ok. Going backwards or making a stop benefits our destination on our way to the goal we want to reach."
- "Make more room for real problems and less room for imaginary problems"
- "Life is a series of tiny Everests so start conquering here and now"
- "I succeeded against all odds, and I promise you that you will succeed if you really want to!".
- "I am a mother, a lawyer and also a mountaineer. My way is to combine things, do them in the best way I can and be happy."
The event took place at the Bar Shira Auditorium at Tel Aviv University, with participation of:
- The series’ creator Yariv Mozer, Alumnus of the Steve Tisch School of Film and Television at TAU’s David and Yolanda Katz Faculty of the Arts
- Gideon Tadmor, Executive Producer of the series, Chairman of Navitas Petroleum, Founder of Tadmor Entertainment, Alumnus of TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law
- Prof. Roni Stauber, Historian of the History of the Jewish People in modern times, Senior Faculty at TAU’s Chaim Rosenberg School of Jewish Studies and Archeology, Director of the Goldstein-Goren Diaspora Research Center, and Head of TAU’s Certificate Studies program in Archiving and Informatics, Member of the Scientific Committee of Yad Vashem, The World Holocaust Remembrance Center, Alumnus of TAU’s Faculty of Humanities
- Adv. Tami Raveh Hausner, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of N12 News Israel and daughter of Gideon Hausner, who served as Attorney General and was the Prosecutor in the Eichmann trial, and her husband, Adv. Yehuda Raveh.
During the event, Prof. Roni Stauber, who served as the series’ Academic and Scientific Consultant, had a personal conversation with Yariv Mozer about the long and complex process of creating the series and its effect on the memory of the Holocaust against the background of global events.
Sigalit Ben Hayoun, Head of the TAU Alumni Organization, opened the event and stated that: "One of our greatest achievements as an alumni organization is the ability to put the spotlight on the multidisciplinary achievements of TAU alumni, who come together for groundbreaking work. The connection between alumni of various faculties is a common thread in the multitude of nuances within the Israeli industry, and the extraordinary creation of this global production, is a great testament to the added value TAU gives to our alumni. This is the core of the activities of the TAU Alumni Organization, and the many achievements won by the world changing community of TAU alumni shows that we are doing it right. We are proud that a connection between an alumnus of TAU’s Steve Tisch School of Film and Television in the Faculty of the Arts, and an alumnus of the Faculty of Law, led at the end of a long and complex process to this masterpiece that we are now about to watch for the first time."
Gideon Tadmor said in his opening speech: "The main part of my business activity in recent years has been centered on energy, the discoveries of natural gas in Israel and Cyprus and the establishment of the natural gas economy, and recently in the field of oil and gas production in the USA, but I have always had a passion for the world of cinema and television - and so I founded a studio for Indie films years ago in New York, and within this framework we produced several films.
As a result of this activity, I was exposed to talented Israeli creators, who were frustrated that they could not find their way to realize their work and bring it to the international audience, despite the fact that Israel was established in the world consciousness as an important source country for quality content. In light of this, I decided to get up and do something - to build a new and unique commercial studio, with the goal of building a bridge between the creators and their creation and the international television and film market, freed from the traditions of regulation in Israel. That's how Emilio and I set out two years ago on a new path. Happily, MGM's roaring lion joined us and became a first-rate financial and professional force multiplier.
I am particularly proud that the first project of this joint venture is the series "The Devil's Confession: The Lost Eichmann Tapes", a high-quality, significant and one-off documentary series with lasting historical value, which will have traction in the international market. The shocking series is a historical document, the main of which is a young and scarred country, which faced its challenges and decisive and critical decisions for its survival and success in its early years."
Adv. Tami Raveh Hausner, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of N12 News Israel and daughter of Gideon Hausner, who served as Attorney General and was the Prosecutor in the Eichmann trial: "My dad’s soul was burned in front of the glass cell... Two weeks before Eichmann was captured he was appointed as Attorney General. He had doubts about whether he could do a faithful job and represent the survivors of the Holocaust because he did not experience the Holocaust first hand. I remember how he gathered us in the small family kitchen and told us that he intended to be the prosecutor himself. This was one of the first decisions he made and the first and last time the Israeli Attorney General appeared every day as a prosecutor in a case being handled in court.
He decided that there would be witnesses who would come to testify, in addition to the documents, but when they started contacting survivors, many refused. He would bring them to our house, mother would serve them tea and cookies and he would convince them to testify. Father really wanted the Sassen recordings, which are presented in this documentary, but I have no doubt that even if he had the recordings in his hands he would not have given up any of the 110 witnesses. When the witnesses began to testify, suddenly there was a huge influx of people who wanted to testify and it was impossible to add them. It was only at that point in time that people began to tell their families about their experiences from the Holocaust, and that is the tremendous achievement. It is increasingly important to show this series all over the world, to show the world who Eichmann was, and also against the background of the rise of global anti-Semitism - who his successors are."
Yariv Mozer, the series’ creator, said: "Thank you very much to everyone - Kan 11, Gideon Tadmor and Tami Raveh, who accompanied me since the beginning of the project and gave me her father’s book, from which you can see what an effort was made to obtain the Sassen recordings. I am proud to say first and foremost as an alum of the Steve Tisch School of Film and Television at Tel Aviv University, that a long list of TAU alumni accompanied the making of this project, including of course Executive Producer Gideon Tadmor, Emilio Shenkar, Kobi Sitt and many more.
I studied Film and Television between 2000-2004, close to the release of another documentary film, "The Specialist", based on Hannah Arendt's book. This tendentious film showed Eichmann as a small clerk who carried out orders. My Eichmann trial consciousness was based on this film. In our world, unfortunately, movies have more influence than books. The Sassen recordings provide a counterpoint to Arendt's theory, and that’s what provoked me to set out to make the series, with the mission to obtain them, and I am happy that I fulfilled the mission I undertook and am proud of the success of the series."
Prof. Roni Stauber, the Academic and Scientific Consultant of the series: "Historically, Hausner's decision to base the trial on a large number of witnesses showed his greatness. Hausner applied the line set by Ben-Gurion to explain the story of the Holocaust through Eichmann's trial. That is why Eichmann was brought to Israel and was not assassinated in Buenos Aires. Unlike the Nuremberg Trials, which did not deal with the Holocaust as a unique event and generally avoided basing indictments on testimonies, Hausner sought to make the voice of the victim heard. He had educational goals. He wanted to explain through the trial to the youth growing up in Israel the impossible situations the Jews in Europe faced in the face of the Nazi murder policy. He sought to shatter the image of Holocaust Survivors as those who went like sheep to the slaughter. Making the voice of the victim heard is the main legacy of the Eichmann trial to the international criminal law regarding genocide and crimes against humanity. This is Hausner's greatness, as historians of The Eichmann trial emphasize".
Among the alumni who attended the event:
- Prof. Eran Neuman, Dean of the David and Yolanda Katz Faculty of the Arts, Tel Aviv University
- Prof. Miriam Shefer Mossensohn, Head of TAU’s Zvi Yavetz School of Historical Studies
- Yael Blecher, judge of the Tel Aviv District Court
- Dana Yagur, Partner in the Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal Law Firm
- Yoram Bechler, Co-Founder and CEO of AIO
- Tamar Tunik Cohen, Foreign News Editor at Calcalist
- Ayellet Hashahar Bitton Perla, Judge of the Krayot Magistrate Court
- Adv. Avi Milikovski, Attorney at the State Attorney's Office, Ministry of Justice
- Michal Badhav, General Counsel and Company Secretary at Webpals Group
- Jonathan Justman, Head of Public Buildings Department at The Municipality of Raanana
- Adv. Liora Weiss-Bansky, Attorney at the State Attorney's Office, Ministry of Justice
- Roey Gilad, Diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and his wife Nitza, also a TAU alumna
- Dr. Have Newman, Assessment and Evaluation Director at the Center for Educational Technology
- Nathan Shuchami, Managing Partner at Hyperwise Ventures
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, held a meeting on the connection between the worlds of High Tech and Culinary.
The meeting was held at "ANU - Museum of the Jewish People", with the participation of
- Prof. Miriam Shefer Mossensohn, Head of TAU’s Zvi Yavetz School of Historical Studies
- Julia Zaher, CEO of Al-Arz Tahini, recipient of the 2022 Hugo Reminisciano Economics Award as part of Tel Aviv University's Board of Governors events, held during the May 2022
- Lana Zaher, VP of Business Development for Al-Arz Tahini, Alumna of the Kellogg-Recanati International Executive MBA Program at the Coller School of Management
- Nir Gal, Deputy CEO of Barkan Vineyards, Alumnus of the Coller School of Management
- And the Moderator of the event was Roy Yerushalmi, Gastronomist, Culinary Researcher, Alumnus of TAU’s Faculty of Humanities, and currently a doctoral student at TAU’s Zvi Yavetz School of Historical Studies.
During the event, the participants discussed issues related to technological developments and their effects on the Israeli food market in Israel and abroad, historical effects on the taste of Israeli market products and how to maintain leadership in a competitive international market for decades.
Sigalit Ben Hayoun opened by saying: "TAU Alumni are at the forefront of all fields of industry and are practically the driving force of the economy. Our ability to create a connection between different fields and interfaces constitutes a significant growth engine for the entire economy and puts a unique spotlight, especially on unusual combinations combinations - for example between culinary and industry."
Prof. Miriam Shefer Mossensohn stated that "the study of history allows us to think outside the box. Things that we take for granted today were not understood 20 years ago, let alone 200 years ago. Together with the departure from the ivory tower, study of the past combined with understanding of the present, allows us to make informed decisions going forward towards the future".
Roy Yerushalmi, a doctoral researcher of Culinary History, reviewed the change that has taken place in Humanities studies over the past two decades: "Alumni of the Faculty of Humanities leave here with exceptional analytical abilities, tools for expression and thinking outside the box. This uniqueness has not gone unnoticed by employers and senior managers - today everyone understands that there is business and occupational significance in studying the Humanities. When Amos Shapira was CEO of Cellcom, he said he was interested in alumni of the Faculty of Humanities. At the time it sounded like a joke, but today this thinking is completely normative and graduates of Philosophy and History are also in demand in the High-Tech industry and Business Consulting. There has also been a profound change in the curricula themselves, which have not frozen in time: Today at the School of Historical Studies at Tel Aviv University, researchers are engaged in fields such as History of Culinary, of Football and more."
Julia Zaher shared with audience the beginning of her career as Owner of the leading tahini brand, and the tribulations of the beginning:
"Anyone who dreams of doing something must remember that all beginnings are difficult. When I arrived at the factory 19 years ago, tahini was not a sought-after product and was certainly not an integral part of international cuisine. Our motto is that food connects people. We have never looked at the competitors but put our emphasis on quality. Since 1990 we have been using the same variety of sesame and producing the tahini with the same traditional production method. In 2015 we moved to a new factory and there was a debate about how to integrate the technology. We decided to continue to maintain the unique line and this is part of our international success. Today it is a family company, which invests in society, and it is important for us to promote disadvantaged populations, among them people with disabilities, the LGBTQ community, Encouraging women to enter the labor market and more."
Her daughter Lana Zaher stated that "over the years we have been able to promote our product - raw tahini - and establish it as an export industry. For years we were a niche at food exhibitions, but in recent years there has been a breakthrough in the perception of food, and suddenly tahini became a super food. Nowadays we are viewed as a healthy, sought-after food, which is served in restaurants all over the world. The USA is our largest market, where there’s a long-standing great demand, but we produce also for Europe and the Far East, where sesame has always been a sought-after flavor. We work a lot with Israeli chefs abroad, because tahini became a good base for any haute culinary cuisine. Tahini is popular all around the world today. Unfortunately, we cannot compete with the prices in Dubai or Jordan due to production costs, but the Israeli market has an advantage that also comes from the promotion of Israel’s great chefs."
Nir Gal, Deputy CEO of Barkan Vineyards spoke about the transformations that have taken place over the years in the Israeli wine market:
"In the beginning, the Israeli wine market was a fairly basic commodity market. In the 1990s, a revolution of quality began, focusing on popular international varietal wines.
At the beginning of the 2000s there was a further maturation and a greater emphasis on terroir in the preparation and marketing of the wine. Terroir is a word that expresses the character and uniqueness of the place where the wine is grown.
In the last decade we have undergone another evolution, and that is the search and promotion of local varieties. Ancient varieties have been found whose origins go back hundreds of years. Also, a number of wineries, led by Barkan, began to promote the scarlet variety that was developed in Israel in the 1970s. This promotion of local varieties is natural and important because wine is first an identity and a story with a cultural and historical context. In Israel you can find local varieties under the beta series, which is an experimental series of Barkan Vineyards, where we promote special projects.
In terms of exporting Israeli wine, 80% of it is for Jewish population outside of Israel, who are looking for both kosher and the connection to Israel as a place. The main challenge of the Israeli wine industry is to expand the target audience beyond the kosher world and to establish Israel as a wine country with a unique identity and quality. We see great interest among opinion leaders around the world in our local varieties and in stories that emphasize Israeli terroir."
Among the alumni who attended the event:
- Eran Ron, Founder and Chairman of Rinsberg Holding Ltd. and Co-owner of E.R.D.S. Group Ltd. who came with his wife, Politcian, Actor and TV Host Mehereta Baruch Ron
- Shmulik Bass, Senior Political Advisor at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- Oz Cohen, Deputy CIO & Director Product Management at the Knesset (the Israeli Parliament)
- Yigal Ben Aharon, Member of the national supervision team for business management trends in the Ministry of Education
- Eldad Kirchner, Legal Secretary at the Tel Aviv District Court
- Shuki Stauber, Author, Researcher, Consultant, Journalist & Senior Lecturer in the fields of Management, Labour and Career
and many more...
The event was sponsored by Barkan Vineyards and Al Arz Tahini
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, hosted Prof. Moran Cerf, Scientist and world expert in Brain Research, Alumnus of TAU’s School of Physics & Astronomy, Shirley and Leslie Porter School of Cultural Studies and the Cohn Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Ideas, for a webinar with the TAU alumni community.
Amos Elad, TAU Vice President of Public Affairs, Resource Development & Alumni Affairs, announced at the beginning of the event that the TAU is in the midst of an aid operation for students and researchers from Ukraine, and thanks to the commitment of alumni from around the world, dozens of young people from the battle zones in Ukraine are now on campus, who have the opportunity to continue their academic studies until they can return to their homes.
Prof. Moran Cerf pointed out that in recent years there has been a sharp increase in recruitment of brain researchers to the business sector, where today the trend is widespread mainly among giant companies such as Google, Amazon, Tesla and the likes. Among the reasons for this, he stated that the companies are interested in perfecting their understanding of how people think, ways to influence customers, build teams more effectively, make people find more interest in the content and on the other hand understand what causes addiction, or aversion to certain products.
Prof. Cerf said also that Brain Research makes it possible to give a broader explanation and interpretation to the results of psychological studies from recent years, with an emphasis on Behavioral Psychology. "There were many studies in psychology that showed that humans frequently behave irrationally, but did not offer ways to change the existing situation. As if telling people: That’s just how we are. Here the neuroscientists came and said, "It can't be. Everything happens in the brain and if we want to change something, then we will have to understand exactly how it works, what causes it and what affects it. And accordingly, to improve our way of thinking."
In his lecture, Prof. Cerf surveyed the variety of possibilities for using Brain Research in the business world. Contributing to the world of marketing, management, decision making, recruitment, team building and organizational behavior, accounting and finance. Referring to the field of financing, for example, he noted that: "People find it difficult to give a realistic assessment regarding the question, 'How much risk are they willing to take when it comes to money. How much are they willing to risk or lose'". Even professionals with years of experience in the field, often find it hard to accept the fact that a purchase fell through or that an investment did not succeed, despite knowing the risks from the start. This is where brain research comes in and helps to give those investors (beginners or experts) an indication from deeper areas of the brain that hold more personal information regarding decision-making and risks. A combination of knowledge about the conscious experience of risk, combined with the limited access we have to our brain, can help people assess risks more accurately. Brain research tools, which allow access to deeper areas of our brain, are an effective way to understand ourselves and the way we behave better."
In conclusion, Cerf pointed out that while Brain Research has already shown some important contributions to the business world, and many of the companies he works with find many uses for this world, it is still not sufficiently accessible to the general public, and his suggestion to the audience was to find a way to contact brain researchers who could help mediate the innovative studies for the business world and to help make technological capabilities accessible to businesses, small and large.
Among the alumni who tuned in to watch the webinar in real time:
- Dafna Landau, Head of Real Estate division at Bank Leumi
- Iris Ronly Riklis, Manager of the Cultural and Art Institutions Forum, Israel
- Shira Bibas, Digital Experience Manager at the Strauss Group
- Lilach Danin-Lavee, Founder & Owner of Speak Up Now
- Chaim Rafalowski, Disaster Management and EU Projects Coordinator at Magen David Adom
- Prof. Michael Schimmel, Director of Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Shaare Zedek Hospital
…and many, many others.
With the aim of strengthening TAU’s women alumni community, the organization holds an annual event to mark International Women's Day with World Changing Alumnae. International Women's Day 2022’s event was a return to our tradition of physical events (after two years of webinars imposed on us by the COVID-19 pandemic), with participation of:
- Hilla Haddad Chemlnik, Director General of Israel’s Ministry of Innovation, Science and Technology, Alumna of TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences and Coller School of Management
- Liran Avisar Ben Horin, Director General of Israel’s Ministry of Communications, Alumna of TAU’s Coller School of Management and the Buchmann Faculty of Law
- Naama Schultz, Director General of the Deputy Prime Minister's Office, Alumna of TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences
- Panel moderator: Amalya Duek, Journalist, economics reporter and presenter at the News Company, Alumna of TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law
The event was opened with greetings from Prof. Neta Ziv, TAU’s Commissioner for Equity and Diversity: "Every year on March 8th, the world celebrates International Women's Day, with the understanding that there is no one woman who can represent all women. Women today face the war in Ukraine, women in Afghanistan were excluded because of the takeover of the Taliban and of course there are also women in Academia. International Women's Day is the day when we try to create the common denominator for all women wherever they are.
The good news: in this academic year, there is a female majority of students in all Israeli institutions and in all degrees. The proportion of female board members is also on the rise. However, Sadly, the higher the ranks are, the number of women decreases. At a certain point, when you meet the top of the academic hierarchy (President-CEO-Rector) the number of women in senior positions comes to a complete halt. Encouragement and support programs are needed to narrow the gap. Over the years, women have been absent from senior management positions and this cannot be fixed in one day. Higher education institutions face a big challenge. Today is a reminder to men and women that the fight for Gender Equality is not over yet."
Sigalit Ben Hayoun, Co-Founder and Head of the TAU Alumni Organization: "After two years, during which we had to refrain from holding face-to-face events, we are proud that the first frontal alumni event celebrates World Changing Alumnae. Women are about 55% of TAU’s 206K alumni, and many of them - although still not enough - hold senior positions in all fields of the economy and in all sectors.
Tel Aviv University promotes and encourages STEM studies - the studies of the technological professions - for women, and created a program that includes joint meetings and enriching workshops of the entire faculty of exact sciences and of each school in the faculty separately, which will provide tools to help students all through their academic journey."
Among the topics discussed in the panel was the question of academic studies at TAU and its effect on their professional and personal development. The alumnae also referred to a statement made recently by the Minister of Defense Benny Gantz (Also a TAU Alumnus) to the Minister of Transportation Merav Michaeli: "Statements like Gantz's to Merav Michaeli are said less and less often, and even then, they do not pass nonchalantly nowadays. Perhaps there are some who are annoyed by Merav Michaeli's style of speaking, but there is no doubt that she did A very fundamental change in the Israeli discourse."
Carmela Eldad, Naama Schultz’s mother, came to hear her daughter, who, among other things, also referred to the beginning of her career in the position:
"The beginning was very difficult. Eyebrows were raised because I'm not just a woman, I'm a deputy woman... but by now, no one raises an eyebrow anymore. Our office deals with complex processes that require cooperation between several government ministries. This position, like many Other positions, mainly requires a sharp head, a heart in the right place and a lot of desire to do good. Today we passed a resolution for the development of the Haifa Bay, that concerns 9 different government ministries. In this government specifically, there is a very clear awareness of the importance of women and there really are many women in the government and also in key positions in other ministries. Hopefully, we will only grow from here on."
Liran Avisar Ben Horin commented on the differences between men's and women's attitudes when competing for senior positions: "We are missing in the room when we are not present, and this develops in us the tendency to think that we are less suitable. Women always say, "We do not meet the threshold conditions." For some reason, men always meet the threshold conditions. They do not have this hesitation.
There is nothing wrong with ambitious goals, but the first step should be the allocation of quotas for key positions to be filled by women. It is a process that builds itself. If we use quotas in the early stages we won't need them later. You have to overcome the butterflies in your stomach and let go of the fears that rule us. As soon as we sit on the chair and do what we know how to do best, everything works out."
Hilla Haddad Chemlnik addressed the question of whether the goal set by the ministry she manages, according to which 15% of the employees in the Israeli economy will work in high tech, is not megalomanic:
"Without government involvement we will reach a number slightly lower than the target, therefore 15% is certainly a worthy vision. But - without government involvement the majority of people who will join high tech will most likely be men from Tel Aviv. Herzliya is also starting to become far away for high tech workers. We must intervene to include more people from the periphery and from a variety of sectors. Regarding women - the proportion of women in high tech has been at 35 percent for almost 10 years. In the core of high tech, it decreases to about 25%. It is in the academia where we see the increase in participation in the studies of high-tech professions. We have set ourselves a goal of 45% Women among the addition. It is impossible to invent women who will study computer science, but we must strive to integrate more of those who are in the training courses in the academia into this industry."
Later, Hila shared exactly when she realized what is the glass ceiling for women:
"My husband and I were reservists at the Technion together and studied aeronautics and space engineering together. We were 4 female students among dozens of men. I was told that today the situation is different and I really hope it is so. Later on, we enlisted together as aeronautics and space engineers in the Air Force. At the age of 27, just when you reach the stage in the army service when you’re supposed to be promoted to the next level, to the rank of Major, we decided to get married. From the moment I put on a ring, I felt the glass ceiling. We applied for the same positions, with the same commanders, but no one asked him about the upcoming wedding. The difference was dramatic, and it was then that I also decided not to pursue a military career. I studied an MA degree in Diplomacy at Tel Aviv University. I did it for the soul, but eventually it's the degree that helps me the most in my current job. A degree in engineering doesn't prepare you to manage a decision-making process or to be good in negotiation, whether overt or covert, and you can't develop in the public sector without being able to negotiate."
The artistic part of the evening was a show by the creative talents of TAU’s Buchmann-Mehta School of Music, titled "All about Chava", a musical tribute to Chava Alberstein named after the film ‘All About Eve’, under the artistic direction of Motti Pearlman and the musical direction and conducting of the school's Alumnus, Nitai Rach. The show was a moving musical journey through some of the best songs from Hebrew music icon Chava Alberstein, performed by singers Chen Wine, Yaara Attias, Maya Sayag, Mika Cohen, Netta Simchon and Rilli Willow, accompanied by a string quintet and piano.
Among the alumni who attended the event:
- Keren Shaked, Head of Experience Management at AKT Global
- Hana Rado, Business and Social Entrepreneur
- Daphna Gazit Weiss, CEO of Marietta Holdings
- Noa Denai, Director of Knowledge and Information Management and Freedom of Information Law Supervisor, Clalit Health Services
- Chaim Rafalowski, Disaster Management and EU Projects Coordinator at Magen David Adom
- Gabi Joffe, General Manager, Israel of Allscripts – DbMotion
- Dr. Dania Shapira, Board Member and Chair of Internet Committee of the Israeli Association of Periodical Press (IAPP)
- Dina Niron, Founder and CEO of Sparks Advisory
- Meirav Schwartz Alon, Deputy of the Business Audit Department, Bank Hapoalim
- Joanna Landau, Founder and CEO of Vibe Israel, member of the Board of Trustees of Tel Aviv University
and many others.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization thanks the Jerusalem Vineyard Winery, who sponsored the event, and CEO and Head Winemaker Lior Lexer.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, thanks the hundreds of alumni who tuned in to the webinar "How did a High Culture Film Project Became the Largest Documentary Project in Israel", with the creator of the award-winning series "The Hebrews", Yair Qeder, Alumnus of the Multidisciplinary Program in Liberal Arts and the Department of Literature at TAU’s Faculty of Humanities, in conversation with Yedioth Ahronoth's film critic, Binyamin Tobias, Alumnus of the Steve Tisch School of Film and Television in TAU’s David and Yolanda Katz Faculty of the Arts.
At the beginning of the interview, Binyamin Tobias asked Yair Qeder about his time studying at TAU’s Faculty of Humanities, in light of the fact that he knew from a young age that his professional future would be in the world of Cinema. Qeder replied that he chose Humanities rather than Film School because he wanted to experience other fields, to get to know the world better before making his first film.
Later in the interview, Yair Qeder referred to the contemporary projects he is currently engaged in as part of the ongoing project “The Hebrews" and the challenges he faces as a creator: "After the 16 films of The Hebrews, centering on the characters of the Jewish, Hebrew and Yiddish writers and poets, I felt the need to take a step back - towards the characters who stand Behind our identity – Half of which are in the realm of Judaism, another half in the realm of modernity, and all shaped some significant part of us. Three new films are now in the making – a film about Baruch Spinoza, directed by David Ofek, focusing on boycotts and freedom of thought; a film about Karl Marx, directed by Benjamin Friedberg, about Marx's place in our contemporary reality, his particular return to our reality, and the Israeli activism inspired by him, through his life story; and a film I'm directing about Sigmund Freud that celebrates the centenary of the invention of the Ego, an invention that no one is exempt from in modern times. The issue of funding is always a challenge - many films fall by the wayside, and I would be happy to have resources for the creation of many more films. We have a wonderful past, and the Hebrews are an excellent way to celebrate it, dive into it and get to know it. The whole past is still ahead of us, to quote A. B. Yehoshua in the film ‘The Last Chapter of A.B. Yehoshua’ the latest installment in ‘The Hebrews'.
Among the alumni who tuned in to watch the webinar in real time:
- Dr. Nava Michael-Tsabari, Founder and co-director of the Raya Strauss Center for Family Firm at Tel Aviv University’s Coller School of Management
- Justice Ela Meiras
- Avi Nudler, Entrepreneur
...And many others.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun hosted hundreds of participants for a webinar with the Media woman, Author and Lecturer Sivan Rahav Meir, Alumna of TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences and Coller School of Management, on New Media, Old Media, family and career.
The meeting was opened with greetings by Amos Elad, TAU Vice President of Public Affairs, Resource Development & Alumni Affairs, who said: "Tel Aviv University sees its alumni as the driving force of the Israeli economy and the world economy. Indeed, only recently was Tel Aviv University ranked first outside the United States (and eighth in the whole world) in the number of alumni entrepreneurs who raised capital in 2021, according to the Pitchbook index. This is of course a source of great pride for us and proof that we are successfully meeting the goal we set ourselves - to be the largest exporters of leaders in the global economy, but most of all it is the result of our uncompromising investment In the TAU Alumni Organization, under the leadership of Sigalit Ben Hayoun, who made it her goal to cultivate the world changing community of our alumni and future alumni."
Sivan Rahav Meir, who began her studies at Tel Aviv University at the age of 16, is an alumna of TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences and Coller School of Management. In her words, she referred to her professional development and a number of current issues that are on the agenda of the media in the era of the COVID19 pandemic:
"In the last two years, since the outbreak of the pandemic, we have all become heavy consumers of media through screens. Even those who were not addicted before 'lost their antibodies' and got hooked, because it was our only way to communicate with each other. Although there is still something called a journalist's certificate from the Government Press Office, But in the age of social networks every smart phone is equivalent to a journalist's license and everyone who owns a cell phone here is an expert, commentator, epidemiologist and even the Chief of Staff. We journalists follow your pages on the networks - That's where most of the content comes from, both light and serious."
"From the saying that was once thrown at us, 'You there in the Media!' In a sort of criticism as if we are too left-wing, or too right-wing - I want to point the finger back at you, the audience: 'You there in the Media!' Because you really are the media today. Your cell phone produces the content."
"Trust in the Media, according to the data of the Israel Democracy Institute, is only 33%. We are unable to put order in the mess, to give you meaning and context. It's not for nothing that the word chosen for the word of the year by the academy of Hebrew language is Tirlul (wackiness), it's just that everyone says it about each other."
"There is a lot more fake news because everything runs faster and without filtering, but this is part of the new game. By the time I get a photographer out from the News Desk to the field, you’ll already be broadcasting live. This makes the conversation superficial on the one hand, but on the other hand, you used to have to go to the library to know what city is the capital of some country and today a quick search on the internet is enough. The rules are changing, period, and the root of things is, as mentioned, that we are all journalists. And if we are all journalists - then we should start taking responsibility for it."
As for the rising violence on social networks, Sivan, who has often experienced attacks herself, said: "Today a person has to go through a workshop on dealing with shaming, really a preparation course. This has a lot of consequences, everyone at some point in their life can go through shaming, in the class WhatsApp group or in front of the entire feed on Facebook. If we are all journalists, then we should be prepared for it. There were several waves of vaccine opponents who 'settled' on my page this year, recently 'The Shadow' published posts against me and this brought another wave. One should also welcome criticism, The question is what kind of and how much. The main thing is to build mental resilience, especially in young people who encounter this phenomenon. How do you protect yourself when five thousand people an hour write against you?"
"One of the most important news this year, in my opinion, was the news report that this year's main domain is 'TikTok' and not Google, for the first time. This means that humanity is less and less engaged in searching for content on Google and more and more looking for Tiktok videos. This indicates something."
Among the alumni who tuned in to watch the webinar in real time:
- Dr. Alon Nevet, Deputy Director General of Beilinson Hospital
- Vared Oren, Foreign Affairs Director, Communications at the Standards Institution of Israel
- Chaim Rafalowski, Disaster Management and EU Projects Coordinator at Magen David Adom
- Dr. Guy Korland, CTO Of Incubations at the Redis Labs technology company
- Yehuda Ayalon, Head of Cyber Security Unit at Meptagon Group
- Ariel Rubashkin, CEO of AllMeD Solutions
And many others...
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun hosted about 1000 alumni for a webinar with Prof. Ran Balicer on the era of predictive medicine.
Prof. Ran Balicer, Alumnus of TAU’s Faculty of Medicine, serves as Chief Innovation Officer at Clalit Health Care, as Founding Director of the Clalit Research Institute, as Chair of the Covid-19 National Experts Advisory Team and as Head of the Israeli Society for Quality in Medicine.
The event was opened with greetings by Prof. Ehud Grossman, dean of TAU’s Faculty of Medicine and himself an Alumnus of the faculty, as well as Director of the internal Medicine department at the "Sheba" Medical Center in Tel Hashomer: "Our faculty is the largest in Israel. We train about 200 Israeli doctors each year in two tracks - 125 in the traditional six-year program, and another 75 in the four-year program. And we are going to grow even bigger this year. We also have a program of about 60 American graduates studying in Israel. We also have a school of dentistry, a school of health professions - nursing, communication disorders, Occupational therapy and physiotherapy, a school of public health, which is very important today, as well as an academic Institute of Advanced Studies that trains thousands of doctors a year. 19 hospitals and large medical centers are affiliated with our faculty and we are doing well in teaching and research.
Since I took up the position, I have set myself the goal of strengthening the personality part of the students as part of their studies. Today we emphasize learning based more on understanding and less on knowledge. Our alumni are currently holding senior leadership positions in the world of medicine in Israel and around the world".
In his words, amongst other topics, Prof. Ran Balicer said: "We live in an exciting era in which, thanks to technology and artificial intelligence, the approach of late reactive medicine is being replaced by predictive, proactive, and preventive medicine. Instead of trying to repair the damage of the disease at a late stage, we intervene at an early stage and even at a pre-disease stage, where the probability of a complete cure is high and the damage of the treatment is minimal. The State of Israel in general and Clalit Health Care in particular are at the forefront of this global revolution - both in developing solutions, and in implementing them on a large scale for millions of people every day.'
Among the alumni who tuned in to watch the webinar in real time:
- Amir Tal, Chief Scientist at Beit Ekstein
- Hagit Adler, Business Executive Officer at Osem Nestle
- Dr. Merav Klo, Entrepreneur and CEO of BATNOA
- Oded Shtemer, Regional Managing Director at Leumit Health Services
- Amos Bar Shalev, entrepreneur
- Ravit Barniv, Director of Clalit Health Care
- Sharon Argov, Senior Strategic Consultant, Strauss Strategy & Consulting House
- Tovi Carmon, CEO of Talkateen
And many more...
Ahead of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, held a webinar on Disability, Equity and Accessibility.
To highlight the important day, a special panel was moderated by Prof. Neta Ziv, TAU’s Commissioner of Equity and Diversity, and with the participation of TAU alumni who are very active in this field:
- Yuval Wagner, social activist for people with disabilities, President & Founder at Access Israel Org and former officer in the Israeli Air Force, former student of TAU’s Coller School of Management
- Revital Lan Cohen, Director of Integration in Education at the Commission for Equal Rights for Persons with Disabilities at the Ministry of Justice, Alumna of TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences
- Erez Perlmuter, Co-Founder & Chairman of Kol Zchut (All Rights), Alumnus of TAU’s Faculty of Exact Sciences, Faculty of Humanities and Coller School of Management
- Gai Ben Dor, Co-Founder & CEO at 180 Sport, an organization promoting and empowering people with disabilities through educational and sports activities, Alumnus of TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law and Coller School of Management
Tel Aviv University considers the accessibility of the environment and integration of people with disabilities in all areas of activity, both during their studies and as alumni, to be of utmost importance. Therefore, this webinar was held ahead of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities which is being observed on 3 December, with the aim of strengthening awareness of the issue throughout the year.
Among the alumni who tuned in to watch the webinar in real time:
- Avi Lerman, CEO of the IDF Disabled People's Organization
- Edna Bar On, President of the Council of International Fellowship Israel
- Shuki Stauber, Author, Researcher, Consultant, Journalist & Senior Lecturer in the fields of Management, Labour and Career
- Aya Deutscher, Director of The Labor Law Department at the Office of the State Attorney
- Shimon Hatzir, Executive Vice President of the Electricity Segment in Ormat Technologies
- Michael Levkovitch, Owner & CEO of Tea and Lemon Ltd.
…and many more
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, hosted hundreds of alumni for a webinar titled 'Background Noises' on the subject of burnout on the home and work fronts, with Dr. Oren Tene, Alumnus of TAU’s School of Medicine and School of Psychotherapy, Psychiatrist and Director of Public Mental Health clinics at the Tel Aviv Medical Center (Ichilov Hospital) and Lecturer at TAU’s Faculty of Medicine.
The event was opened by Prof. Thelma Hendler, Psychiatrist and Researcher of the Neuroscience of Emotion, a pioneer in the field of functional imaging of the brain in Israel, Head of the Sagol Institute for Brain Functions in Ichilov, Professor of Psychiatry and Psychology at Tel Aviv University, alumna of TAU’s Faculty of Medicine.
In his words, Dr. Oren Tene referred to the differences between "burnout" and "depression", two concepts that are common in everyday language but carry different situations, and presented against the background of the challenging reality in which we live today, what are the essential differences between the concept of "burnout", as we knew it in the past, and countless daily struggles that may lead to burnout in the present: "In the past, the concept of burnout referred to work. But what do we do in our new world where work and home are so mixed? Burnout is indeed an experience of work, but also of home and studies. And in short: we are all worn out on the fronts of life."
He then referred to the connection between the alternative reality reflected to us through social networks and the connection between it and burnout: "With a few simple steps, managers, companies as well as individuals, can contribute to prosperity and fight burnout! As soon as I get up in the morning, I am bombarded with information. Most of it is negative. Some of it provokes feelings of envy. A parallel and seemingly perfect world exists in social networks at the same time as our daily existence. How do we not wear out in the face of this information overload? How do we survive this bombardment?".
Among the alumni who tuned in to watch the webinar in real time:
- Erez Perlmuter, Co-Founder & Chairman of Kol Zchut (All Rights)
- Chaim Rafalowski, Disaster Management and EU Projects Coordinator at Magen David Adom
- Hezi Himelfarb, CEO of IceCure
And many, many more...
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, in collaboration with the American Friends of Tel Aviv University (AFTAU), Headed by Jennifer Gross, held an intercontinental webinar. The center of the event was a personal conversation with Journalist Dr. Ilana Dayan, alumna of TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law and recipient of an Honorary doctorate from Tel Aviv University, on Investigative Journalism, Media, Politics and everything in between.
About 600 alumni from all over the world tuned in for the event.
Prof. Shira Dvir-Gvirsman from TAU’s Dan Department of Communication moderated the online event from London, and Mary Sagi-Maydan, Architect and Journalist, Founder of Maydan Architects, Inc., alumna of TAU’s Gershon Gordon Faculty of Social Sciences and the Coller School of Management, Interviewed from the Silicon Valley.
Naturally, the event attracted the attention of the media, and was reported in the TMI section of Maariv’s Lounge, as well as in Globes:
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues its series of meetings with inspiring alumni for its world changing alumni community, and in this event – chose to put the spotlight on the worlds of Storytelling - because knowing how to tell the story IS the whole story.
Accurate storytelling is like a key. If you spin the story right - doors will open.
More than 900 alumni signed up to attend the webinar with Dr. Noam Feinholtz, considered the guru of storytelling, Lecturer and Coacher in the world of corporate stories, who has many years of accumulated experience in radio broadcasts, podcasts, workshops and lectures, Alumnus of the Steve Tisch School of Film and Television at TAU’s David and Yolanda Katz Faculty of the Arts and Faculty of Social Sciences.
Here are some important tips that Feinholtz gave TAU Alumni:
- Know the Audience
Who is the audience? what do they know? What is important to them? How do they relate to the subject? Once you have the answers to these questions - we can get going.
- Think like the audience
The audience always asks themselves "what do I get out of this". Try to convince it of the value of what you’re saying. Tell the story from the audience’s point of view. If there is a gap in knowledge or point of view, bridge it in the opening.
- Think about the day after
What is your media goal? What do you want the audience to know / think / feel / do at the end of the meeting? Build your presentation based on the answers to these questions.
- What will the audience know?
i.e. what data should I present? There is no need to overload with data that will not serve your communication purpose.
- What will the audience think?
That is, what do I want to convince them of? This is not about "cold" data, but about shaping consciousness. What is the world view I am trying to convey?
- How will the audience feel?
Towards the problem I presented, towards the solution, towards the presenter or the body he represents and towards itself within the given context.
- What will the audience do?
Close a deal? Will they be interested and proceed to another meeting? Change their behavior? Decide what you want and accordingly begin to define what the audience needs to feel, know and think in order to reach this result.
- Distilling up to 10 words
Distill your idea into a simple title of no more than ten words. If the core of the idea is clear to you, it will also be clear to the audience. Ideally, choose one message per interaction.
- 90 second opening
Think carefully about the opening. The first 90 seconds are critical. Within 90 seconds you have to make it clear to the audience that it is worth listening to you, that what you have to say is important enough, new, interesting and above all - relevant to them.
- How to grab attention?
Through a question / a surprising fact / an example / an anecdote about current events / a personal aspect / what will you get out of it as a listener? The audience will give you a few seconds of grace but you have to fight for their attention.
- Tarantino's Law
Every story has a beginning, middle and end... but not necessarily in that particular order. Find the right "script" for you, one that starts strong, ramps up, and leaves the difficult parts for the moment when the audience is completely focused on you.
- So, who is the hero?
If you are a business that sells services, the hero is not you... the user is the hero. From here you will continue alone.
- Once upon a time
People remember stories and not slogans. Find a tangible story or example that will convey your message. In the case of a technological venture, for example, you can describe the world before and after the venture or the life of one user. In the case of presenting data, you can dive into one key figure that intrigued you and tell the full story behind it."
Among the alumni who watched the webinar in real time:
- Adv. Dafna Meitar-Nechmad, Social Investor, Co-Founder of the Law and Philanthropy Institute at Tel Aviv University, Co-Chairperson of the Zvi and Ofra Meitar Family Foundation, recently appointed Chairperson of TAU’s Board of Trustees
- Dori Manor, Chairman of the Lubinsky Group Ltd
- Doron Shrem, News Editor at Yedioth Ahronoth
- Maya Fidelman, Political Advisor at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- Hezi Himelfarb, CEO of 02Cure Ltd
- Moshe Salcberg, CEO of the chip design company Veriest Techtime
- Avi Chudin, CEO of Electra SPC
…and many others.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues its series of meetings with inspiring alumni for its alumni community, and this time directed a spotlight on the Israeli tourism industry, one of the most sensitive sectors in the economy at the moment.
Four alumni who are among the leaders of the Israeli tourism world participated in a panel that focused on the trends, challenges and opportunities at this time, especially in light of its relevance in recent days:
- Amir Hayek, President of the Israel Hotel Association and Chairman of TAMIR, the Packaging Recycling Corporation in Israel, Alumnus of TAU’s Coller School of Management and Faculty of Social Sciences
- Asaf Zamir, former Minister of Tourism and current Israeli Consul General in New York, Alumnus of TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law
- Anat Starik-Dahan, Deputy CEO of Israel Canada Hotels, Former Co-CEO of Tamares Hotels, Alumna of TAU’s Faculty of Humanities
- Roni Pivko, Chairman, President & CEO of the Club Hotel Group and Vice President of the Israel Hotel Association, Alumnus of TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences and the Coller School of Management
The webinar’s host was a TAU alumna who knows the tourism industry well and has been covering it for years - Lee Abramovich, Keshet's N12 News Consumerism and tourism Journalist, Alumna of TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences.
Among the things that came up in the webinar:
"In my opinion, a target of 10 million tourists should be set, and this target should be accompanied by infrastructure, attractions, and an airport. The tourism industry is a very economic industry and employs workers all over the country, especially in the periphery where mobility is high, where a receptionist can become a CEO of a hotel or even a hotel group. It's a fascinating and a happy industry. An industry related to foreign relations - the more tourists arrive; the more people will see that it's worth visiting here again. The industry is everything: it's the aviation field, the agents, the tour guides, the restaurants; and it's connected to many factors that make up the Israeli tourism industry."
"There is a process of moving to automation in our industry. You can book a room online, arrive at a hotel, check in, and then also open the door of the room using an app without going through the reception. This is just one of many examples of how this industry reinvents itself and adapts itself to today's world all the time."
"Today around the world, the work week is shortened from six to five and from five to four days a week and thus more people are going to go on vacations. The countries of the East and the countries of the former USSR have opened up and their people are also looking to tour and see the world, that was closed to them before, and therefore there are now more tourists than there are hotels. There is an urgent need to build many, many hotels. It is in the clear interest of investors and countries, therefore more and more hotels of all types will be built with the encouragement of governments while providing investment grants to entrepreneurs.”
Since the opening of the ‘ANU Museum of the Jewish People’ at the Tel Aviv University campus in March 2021, it has attracted a large number of visitors and created a buzz.
Therefore, the TAU Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, initiated a special day, during which the gates of the museum were opened only to TAU alumni and their families. The response was quick as hundreds of alumni signed up. The alumni who came to the event enjoyed a warm welcome, guided tour and lectures. Ben Hayoun expressed her gratitude to the museum, and greeted all those who came to enjoy the fascinating journey, depicting the story of the Jewish people throughout the generations to the present day in an innovative and exciting way.
In addition, TAU alumni enjoyed lectures by two members of our world changing community: Dr. Orit Shaham-Gover, Chief Curator of the museum and alumna of TAU’s Zvi Yavetz School of Historical Studies and School of Education, and Medy Shvide, CEO of the Museum Renewal, alumna of the David and Yolanda Katz Faculty of the Arts, who spoke about the challenges of building a large museum.
The ANU Museum of the Jewish People aims to give the next generation the key to understanding Jewish identity, to strengthen the sense of belonging to the Jewish people, to deepen the connection between Jews in Israel and Jews around the world, to cultivate a sense of pride in the Jewish heritage and pride in the achievements of Jewish people over the generations and their contribution to the whole world.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues its tradition of meetings with inspiring alumni, with a Webinar that dealt with the High-Tech world of tomorrow, titled ‘From Startup Nation to Scale up Nation’.
Four alumni who "did it", each in their own field, participated:
- Kobi Marenko, Co-Founder and CEO of Arbe Robotics, Alumnus of the TAU Faculty of Humanities
- Yifat Oron, Incoming Senior Managing Director at Blackstone and Head of the Firm's Tel Aviv Office, Alumna of the Coller School of Management
- Omer Keilaf, CEO and Co-Founder of Innoviz Technologies, Alumnus of the TAU Faculty of Engineering and the Coller School of Management
- Karin Mayer Rubinstein, CEO & President of Israel Advanced Technology Industries (IATI), Alumna of the TAU Faculties of Social Sciences and Law and the Coller School of Management
The event was moderated by Inbal Orpaz, Researcher at the Lipkin Shachak program in the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), Business Strategy Consultant in the fields of innovation and startups, Speaker and Lecturer, Alumna of the TAU Faculties of the Arts, and Social Sciences and the Coller School of Management.
A few quotes from the significant things said in the panel:
Karin Mayer Rubinstein:
"COVID19 has created a paradigm shift with a significant change in organizational culture and ways of working. A dichotomous period of significant high-tech growth, accompanied by an intense struggle between companies for quality workforce, alongside layoffs; and a record-breaking year of capital raising alongside a decline in the number of transactions".
"Employees are very essential to the success and value of companies. Almost the only ones who are needed are the employees. Funds understand that if employees do not get a large enough share - they should increase the employees’ share of options. Those who may be harmed are the Angels who invested in the beginning. Nowadays, the solution to that is in ‘Secondary form’, in which they are bought out by investors who come in later stages. But the employees are most needed here- they are the whole story".
"I think the Israeli High-Tech market should not be disturbed by the capital market and money. It should be disturbed by what is happening in Jaffa, by what happened in Bat Yam and by Umm al-Fahm. Israel has no government and the state has lost its ability to control what’s going on. Even if the Nasdaq drops 30% - there will be enough money for startups in Israel... In the coming years, the High-Tech industry will suffer from the political situation in Israel and the state we are in....”
“This is the best time in the history of the world to be an entrepreneur. One can really influence people’s lives, and there are many good things that can be done. In the past, High-Tech revolved around gambling and less nice things, but nowadays the industry is really changing the world, and Israeli entrepreneurs are in almost every field that is essential for the existence of the world in the next generation".
"If there is one area that Israel can be proud of and should continue to utilize, it is its ability to create innovation and bring about achievements. That’s the image that has built its reputation for decades, but it can be used to rectify the way the country is viewed. We won’t be able to explain why we are the poor victims, because we are big and strong. But we can be the nation that produces innovation and we must continue developing this aspect and thus correct the way Israel is perceived from the outside".
Towards the end of the event, Inbal Orpaz asked the participants if anyone had anything to add. To this, Omar Keilf replied: "Study at Tel Aviv University!". Kobi Marenko quickly agreed and said "Absolutely! Statistically - this is surely the right path to becomming an entrepreneur".
Among the viewers who viewed the live broadcast of the Webinar, were Lior Ovsiovich, Junior Partner at FIMI Opportunity Funds; Paz Gilboa, Founder & CTO at p-EcoSystems; Gadi Peretz, CEO at RGB Total Strategy; Inon Beracha, CEO at PrimeSense, and many more.
Against the background of Red Color alerts and rising tensions in the Gaza Strip, the Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, led by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, held a Webinar with Ohad Hemo, Alumnus of the School of Political Science, Government and International Affairs at TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences and the Faculty of Humanities.
The event was moderated by Dr. Mira Tzoreff, Senior Faculty Member in the Department of Middle East and African History at TAU’s Zvi Yavetz School of History, and Researcher at the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies.
The meeting with Ohad Hemo, one of Channel 12 News' senior reporters, was held following the publication of his book "On the Ground", which tells the story of the Palestinians at the present time - the revolutions taking place in the territories (especially among the younger generation), the despair and a sense of lack of personal future, as well as an apparent change in the relation to Israel.
Hemo recounts the difficulties of a journalist covering the Palestinians and marches through the minefield of coverage in hostile territory, the dilemmas that sometimes arise (whether to eat in a mourning tent of a suicide bomber, the use of various terminologies, etc.).
Hemo also addresses the differences between Hamas, the PLO and Islamic Jihad, talks about the elections in the West Bank and the bloody struggle between Hamas and PLO, tells about the Hamas prophecy, according to which Israel will be wiped out in 2022, and also talks about the other - those young Gazans who use social networks to share Their traumas with their Israeli peers in the Gaza strip.
Among the viewers who viewed the live broadcast of the Webinar, were:
Ronit Tirosh, Current Chairperson of the Israeli Football Referees Association; Rutie Adar, Head of Samsung’s Israeli Strategy and Innovation Center; Amit Goffer, CTO & President of UPnRIDE Robotics Ltd.; Zack Zigdon, Co-Founder and MD International of Innovid; Rafi Maor, CEO & Chairman of R.O.N Investment Ltd.; Zur Ezyon, CEO at Athena; Mira Dror, director of the Museum of Taxes at the Ministry of Finance, and many others.
The State of Israel currently has 81 embassies, 21 consulates and another 6 delegations / economic offices around the world. Ahead of the 73rd Independence Day celebrations of the State of Israel, the Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, led by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, invited four of their leaders, all TAU Alumni, to a Webinar that addressed the unique challenges of Israeli ambassadors in the international arena, and especially during the COVID19 crisis.
The event was Participated by:
- Yaffa Ben-Ari, Ambassador of Israel to Japan, Alumna of the Faculty of Social Sciences
- Shani Cooper, Ambassador of Israel to Ghana, Liberia and Sierra-Leone, Alumna of the Faculties of Social Sciences and Humanities
- Sandra Simovich, Consul General at the Israeli Consulate General in Munich, Alunba of the Buchmann Faculty of Law
- Ran Peleg, Consul General, Head of the Israeli Consulate General to South West China, Chengdu, Alumnus of the Buchmann Faculty of Law and the Coller School of Management
The event was moderated by Prof. Hanna Lerner, Head of TAU’s School of Political Science, Government and International Affairs, Alumna of the Faculty of Humanities.
Yaffa Ben-Ari, Ambassador of Israel to Japan, said:
"Israel's branding in Japan was revived during the COVID19 crisis. Not only did the success of the vaccine operation give Israel a positive image in the Japanese media, but also the exposure of the Israeli passengers on ‘the corona ship’ in the early days of the crisis. The embassy's increased activity in creating content on social media - when most of the population has switched to Home Office - has also attracted a lot of attention in the past year.
The treatment we gave the Israeli tourists on the Corona ship, both during the quarantine on the ship and in the process of their release and transfer to Israel, was difficult and complex, especially at the beginning of the epidemic, when anxiety and lack of knowledge about the nature of the epidemic made it difficult to deal with various factors. The treatment of the rescue of many other Israelis from around the world in those first months showed how much the State of Israel, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its emissaries, treats its citizens with extraordinary devotion.
The COVID19 crisis has created many challenges. Beyond the medical and economic challenge arose the need to adapt to a new reality of uncertainty, and to find creative solutions for the continued functioning and achievement of goals.
The worlds of culture and the arts, as well as the tourism industry, have suffered a severe blow here as well. Israeli diplomacy has shown rapid adaptability. In accordance with the new normal we have created new platforms. We recruited relevant content and designed it for public media: a short story by Etgar Keret titled"Outside" was produced as a short video in Japanese in a unique co- production with Japanese artists. This work was widely circulated, including screening on billboards simultaneously in the main square in Shibuya in Tokyo, in Times Square in New York City and on the building of Habima – the Israeli National Theater in Tel Aviv. The work has been translated into 20 languages".
Ran Peleg, Consul General, Head of the Israeli Consulate General to South West China, stated:
"Precisely in China, where everything is open on the one hand, but closed to the world and with no flights on the other, I feel that the diplomat's role returns to the traditional definition of representation on the ground, which bridges and connects Israeli factors – commercial and others – towards cooperation with the Chinese. This is through personal, unmediated contact with decision-makers, things that cannot be produced via a Zoom. When COVID19 broke out in China, only the Foreign Ministry staff at the consulate remained, with great uncertainty and in a somewhat apocalyptic atmosphere. The task was, first and foremost, to ensure the safe evacuations of Israelis who were here, in addition to conveying and reflecting the reality in China, in a credible manner. Today, Corona virus is hardly evident in China, and the random cases which are diagnosed are quarantined and taken care of well enough that a 2nd wave has not occurred here”.
Shani Cooper, Ambassador of Israel to Ghana, Liberia and Sierra-Leone, said:
"Malaria is more present here than COVID19. I admit that I asked my daughters to try not to get injured during this period... COVID19 arrived here late, and although the testing rate in Africa is lower than the World Health Organization’s requirements, a total of 4.5 million people got infected with COVID19, which constitutes about 3% of the total infections among the world population. In this context, it can be said that Africa was lucky."
Sandra Simovich, Consul General in Munich, commented on the role of the diplomat in this era:
"In the short term, Diplomats nowadays have ways of producing more speaker platforms today, digitally. But the joy in meeting face to face again is present, and we weren’t meant to create virtual diplomacy. Chemistry and interpersonal interaction are very important to diplomacy, and there is no substitute for that".
Among the alumni who watched the Webinar live, in real time:
Ehud Eitam, Head of an Israeli Delegation abroad at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, former Israeli Ambassador to Turkey and Costa Rica; Adva Rogalin, CEO at Kibbutz Ga'ash Commercial Properties; Dr. Alon Nevet, Deputy Director of the Hillel Yaffe Medical Center; Irit Savion Waidergorn, Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Training Department, and many others.
As part of its annual tradition, the Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, led by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, celebrated International Women's Day in a festive Webinar with inspiring and world-changing alumnae.
The online event was opened by Prof. Ilana Eli, Gender Equality Adviser to the President of Tel Aviv University, who revealed some numbers: half of all Israeli university students are women, but they make up only 20 percent in the full professor rank.
The panel was moderated by Lee Abramovich, Consumer & Tourism correspondent at the Channel 12 news company, Alumna of the TAU Faculty of Social Sciences, and was participated by:
- Dr. Sharon Shacham, Founder and President of Karyopharm Therapeutics, Alumna of the TAU Faculties of Exact Sciences, Life Sciences and the Coller School of Management
- Adv. Shulamit Geri, General Director of the Bank of Israel, Alumna of the Buchmann Faculty of Law
- Tzipi Pines, Theatre Director & Producer, Director and Artistic Director of Beit Lisin Theater by Baruch Ivcher, Alumna of of the TAU Faculty of the Arts
Lee Abramovich arrived to TAU directly from the kibbutz and felt that she had reached the pinnacle of her ambitions: "Many articles and research I did in the beginning of my career were based on the inspiration I received from my studies in the School of Psychology and the Department of Communication - I have acquired tools at TAU that serve me to this day".
Tzipi Pines said that her parents, both Holocaust survivors, designated her to be a teacher "because there are a lot of vacations", and only when her son Guy was four years old did she begin her studies at TAU. "I wanted to study theater but I was told it was not a profession, it was a way of life... so I took classes from other departments as well. I forgot about home and was only busy with studies".
The other speakers asked Tzipi how does she react when she is said to be a strong woman. "For me it was a matter of development, I had no other dream except being in the theater. I was not born here and Hebrew was not my mother tongue, things happened over time. Being strong is not a terrible thing, no need to be ashamed of it".
Shulamit Geri revealed that she served in the IDF in the military band, and also worked as a model: “I grew up in a small moshav in the Upper Galilee, and I had a dream of doing justice and becoming a lawyer. TAU has summoned new challenges into my life, and my law studies have provided me with analytical tools, which I use to this day.
For 17 years I worked at the Weizmann Institute, and for the last 8 years at the institute I served as the institute's director general and vice president of administration and finance. Then, I ran for the position of General Director of the Bank of Israel and to my delight, I was chosen".
Sharon Shacham shared that during her nine years of chemistry at TAU she gave birth to her two children, and so she did not get the full ‘sunbathing on the campus grass’ experience. "The study environment has given me the most important tool – knowing how to think. How do you approach a problem, define it and present a solution? I pass that on to my employees today".
In addition, she noted that "in the United States, people are organized according to university alumni organizations, and it is very difficult to establish a company in the United States, and especially in Boston, when I am Sharon from Raanana, with no ties to any of these cliques. I was lucky that my husband is from this world, in the John Hopkins community and other places as well, and that is exactly why I am so happy that the Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization was established and creates this type of network for us in Israel as well. I hope it will achieve great things".
They all agreed that female management differs from male management in a number of parameters - from loyalty to the workplace to listening methods; That the last year has been terrible and that we have learned a lot of things about ourselves as women.
Their tip: "It is important to dream because dreams create reality, dreams strengthen and give power. Raise the bar time and time again."
Among the alumni and alumnae who watched the live event in real time:
Judge Daniela Cherizli; Judge Varda ben Shahar; Adva Rogalin, CEO at Kibbutz Ga'ash Commercial Properties; Rivka Lazovsky, former Global Chairwoman of WIZO; Amir Abramovich, Group CEO at Plazit-Polygal, Dganit Palti, Former CFO at EL AL Israel Airlines,and many others
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization continues its tradition of webinars with inspiring alumni, this time with a surprising and colorful theme that dealt with fashion shows, sweatpants, shoes, comfortable fabrics, the COVID-19 era and everything in between.
At the initiative of Sigalit Ben Hayoun, Head of the TAU Alumni Organization, four alumni spoke in a webinar titled ‘Back to the runway’ about the changes the COVID-19 era brought into the fashion and design industry.
- Tal Granovsky Amit, Fashion Historian, Lecturer and Director of the Rose Archive for Fashion & Textile, Shenkar, alumna of the Faculty of the Arts
- Ori Lehavi, Owner, CEO and Creative Director of "Daniella Lehavi", Alumnus of the Coller School of Management
- Yossi Harari, International Jewelry Designer, Alumnus of the Faculties of Humanities and of Social Sciences
- The event was moderated by Elinor Dvir, Fashion and Lifestyle Journalist and Content Editor at Walla! Fashion, Alumna of the Faculty of Engineering
Among other things, Tal Granovsky Amit said:
"The tension between what’s real and the digital world, which was not sufficiently present in the fashion world, succeeded to enter it during the COVID era."
"The fashion world manages to make a very creative adaptation these days - and creativity is the name of the game."
"I don’t think we will go out of the house wearing sweatpants soon, other than for the purpose of walking the dog."
Yossi Harari said:
"In the last year, everybody learned that Less is more. There was an 'over' of everything. Too many products on the shelves... in quantities. And that created confusion in every industry."
"E-Commerce knocked out the retail world a few years ago already... This year, E-Commerce was a very good source, more than any other year before, because the stores were closed and people were at home and started buying things for themselves."
"Instagram creates a direct dialogue between the designer and his target market."
Ori Lehavi said:
“Everything in fashion becomes much more casual, because there are no events to dress up for. The same goes for shoes too - the line is more casual, and sales of shoes have increased greatly. '
"Customers have developed new habits this year."
"Our private customers have moved online. Overnight, our website became our strongest store, The largest and most influential showcase.'
"When there are no exhibitions, it is more difficult to reach new wholesale customers abroad, and for designers who haven’t built a database yet it is even more challenging."
Among the alumni who watched the webinar live:
Nadav Palti, Chairman of Mapal Communications and CEO & President of Dori Media Group; Carmela Avner, VP Business Transformation & partnership Management, Strauss Water; Hava Katz, Chief Curator at the Israel Antiquities Authority; Hezi Himelfarb, Entrepreneur, CEO of O2Cure; Tamar Ariav, Former President of the Beit-Berl College, and many others.
In the run-up to the inauguration of the incoming US president Joe Biden, and during the hours the congress decided on former President Trump's 2nd impeachment, the TAU Alumni Organization, Headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, held a previously planned webinar, which dealt with the dramatic results of the US presidential, senate and congressional elections, and their consequences, both globally and locally for Israel.
The webinar was participated by inspiring TAU Alumni who chose academia as a way of life and became Tel Aviv University faculty after graduating:
- Dr. Udi Sommer, Head of the Center for the Study of the United States at TAU with the Fulbright Program, Alumnus of the TAU School of Psychological Sciences
- Prof. Miriam (Miri) Shefer Mossensohn, Head of the Zvi Yazetz School of Historical Studies, Alumna of the Zvi Yavetz School of Historical Studies
- Dr. Liora Hendelman-Baavur, Director of the Alliance Center for Iranian Studies at TAU, Alumna of the TAU Faculties of Social Sciences and Humanities.
The event was moderated by two prominent media people and TAU Alumni, who deal with current events and what is happening in the United States on a daily basis:
- Tal Schneider, Diplomatic & Political correspondent, Zman Israel by The Times of Israel, Alumna of TAU's Buchmann Faculty of Law
- Uri Pasovsky, Senior commentator, Globes, Alumnus of the Zvi Yavetz School of Historical Studies and the Shirley and Leslie Porter School of Cultural Studies in the TAU Faculty of Humanities, and the Coller School of Management
The panel discussed complex and major questions:
How will America recover from the storming of the United States Capitol that occured this past weekend?
What can this week's events teach about the state of democracy in the United States, and the democratic rift around the world?
Will Biden be able to bridge the gaps in American society?
What are the consequences of violating the freedom of expression? And what are the limits of freedom of expression?
How will the end of Trump's tenure and the insane damage to his status affect US-Israel relations?
What does Iran think?
And are these historical times?
Prof. Miri Shefer Mossensohn:
"Leaders in the Middle East, led by Erdogan, are cynically saying to the United States today, 'Told you so': the image you radiated to the outside world as the guardian of democracy – Now even you can't tell us how to behave. Similar Hand-rubbing is taking place in Moscow and Tehran.
As a historian, I can say that when there is a sense of chaos and loss of compass, people do things they would not do in other situations. We have seen examples of this throughout history, when pandemics (such as COVID-19) have brought about dramatic changes."
Dr. Liora Hendelman-Baavur:
"From the point of view of Iran and other Middle Eastern countries, the US administration, which has been preaching morality on human rights issues for years, is at a low point when its own treatment of American citizens is revealed (like the George Floyd scandal). It seems that Iran's general feeling following the US election results is relief. Along with anti-American statements to which we are already accustomed, there is a keen anticipation for the future, especially for a removal of the sanctions Iran faced since Trump's withdrawal of the "Iran Nuclear Deal" in 2018.
Iran is expected to hold presidential elections in the summer of 2021 and there is great pressure to get Washington to lift the sanctions, or at least some of them, by then.
Beyond that, there is a global trend where the balance of power is shifting, and the zeitgeist is calling for “strong” leaders of a certain kind. Biden is a politician with many years of experience in Congress, and there are many expectations of him. Many see him as a kind of knight on a white horse who will bring about a kind of world correction after 4 years of Trump."
Dr. Udi Sommer:
"If Trump is Impeached, he will be the first president in American history who'll be Impeached twice.
The ultimate criterion for democracy is the peaceful transfer of power. The idea that a party that lost an election peacefully transfers the reins to a winning party is a cornerstone of any democratic system. The violent incidents on Capitol Hill last week undermine these foundations.
In addition, one of the basic criteria in the American Constitution is the principle of separation of powers aimed at preventing the concentration of excessive power and the abuse of that power. The fact that the head of the executive branch has led to the cessation of a fundamental constitutional procedure that is at the core of the activity of the legislature, and violently, also undermines this fundamental principle.
And yet, 74.2 million voters voted for Trump. A president whose many messages throughout his tenure have been in a similar spirit. And no less, many of the Republican politicians to this moment are in no hurry to distance themselves from Trump.
One of COVID-19's most notable influences on American politics stems from the unprecedented turnout in envelopes. It made possible, despite the difficult circumstances of a global pandemic, for an unprecedented number of voters to vote. Beyond that, many of those voters were Democrats. And that’s also what gave a lot of the dramatic garnet of Election Day and the days that followed, when the votes counted from the envelopes were from urban areas that are mostly Democratic strongholds.
The Abraham Accords are a paradigm shift in Middle Eastern reality. A change in light of American foreign policy in the Middle East will need to be updated. First, in contrast to the 1990s and the bilateral reality advocated by the US State Department at the time, it is a multilateral reality that affects the system of regional alliances, axes of power, and ways of dealing with Iran.
Second, the Palestinians, whose perception was that until there was no progress with them there would be no progress with any other factor in the Middle East, are no longer in the same status. Their status has changed radically from the moment the trend was established, according to which Israel and other regional factors are getting closer without the precondition of progress towards an agreement with the Palestinians."
Among the hundreds of Alumni who viewed the webinar in real time:
Michael Kenny, Owner & CEO of Eastronics LTD
Eran Elizur, CEO of IKOMED Technologies Inc
Justice Daniela Shirizli
Zeev Kirschenbaum, President and CEO of ACS Motion Control LTD
Gideon Reis, CEO of Pavilion-Spark
Jerry Mandel, Managing Director of Galil Capital Finance
Former TAU President Prof. Joseph Klafter and his wife Pirchiya
and many more.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, is currently celebrating its fifth anniversary and continues the tradition of meetings with inspiring alumni who has "made it". In an active community of over 85,000 alumni, inspiring people can be found from almost every field of research, activity and influence, but this meeting was a particularly delicious and surprising.
The organization invited the TAU Alumni community to a culinary-zoom-experiential event with four alumni, all well-known in the field of culinary:
- Yuval Ben Neriah, chef and owner of the Taizu Group, who studied at the TAU Faculty of Humanities
- Dushi (Andrea) Leitersdorf, Owner of House of Dallal, alumna of the TAU Faculties of Humanities and Social Sciences
- Asaf Abir, author of "Not Another Cookbook" which deals with the science and art of the perfect bite
- Dr. Yasmine Meroz, Principal Investigator of the Meroz Lab of Growing Systems & Plant Behaviour at the TAU School of Plant Sciences and Food Security, alumna of the TAU Faculty of Exact Sciences.
Asaf, a man of words, skipped between the three panelists lightly as he navigated the conversation between campus memories, flavors, boxes and deliveries.
Yuval Ben Neriah revealed that both his parents are both Medical doctors who are TAU Alumni as well. "My parents agreed that I would become a chef, but insisted that I should first get a degree, which was very difficult. I was always behind, and to this day I have not completed my degree."
Dushi, on the other hand, admitted: "I’m a nerd and always was one. I skipped the big post-military service trip around the world, enrolled in TAU and studied through 12 years and 4 degrees."
Yasmine, on the other hand, chose an academic career, and with a background in physics, she currently researches plant behavior and communication between plants, using methods from the world of physics.
Dushi and Yuval agreed on much of COVID’s effect on restaurants and on where the industry is headed. They admitted that a different and new experience had developed, of consuming boxed takeaways. "The new takeaway allows us to preserve both our manpower, our teams, and also maintain our reputation," they said.
Asaf asked the restaurateurs ‘Will anything change after it's all over? Did the pandemic teach people to understand the role of restaurants?
Yuval: "Two genres will stay strong - fine dining at one end, and street food at the other end. People who started cooking at home now understand the cost of fish and appreciate the high prices better."
Dushi: "COVID has brought with it new emphases, and if you are optimistic enough, alert enough, you can turn lemons not only into lemonade but also caipirinha: To meet the challenge, get the best out of the situation, while practicing creativity, responsibility and efficiency."
"Just like trees," Yasmine mentioned, "if they feel threatened by strong winds they stop growing high and instead grow in width, allowing them to become stronger and survive. In general, plants excel at adapting to harsh and unpredictable environments, and know how to survive periods of drought, pandemics and fires. They are doing something right, and we still have what to learn from them”. By the way, she admitted that the COVID era taught her to bake homemade bread, and if that doesn't work, you can always order from Dallal.
During the second part of the event, Yuval Ben Neriah took over for a practical “Cook-Along” workshop for preparing the "Chef's Dish" - filet of Sparus aurata or Sea Bass with tomato curry and yogurt.
Among the alumni who tuned in to watch the live webinar:
Adi Gura, Partner at the Braverman Gallery, Tedy Kratenstein, Senior Executive at Dell Technologies, Michael Levkovitch, Owner and CEO of Tea and Lemon Ltd., Amir Fishler, CEO at Netivot Yetzira Real Estate, Mashav Balsam, Co-Founder & COO at TechedUp, Sharona Sagi, VP Product at Exlibris, Amir Wagner, Co-Founder and CEO of Respect Branding, and more.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, led by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues its tradition of meetings with inspiring alumni, and chose to shine the spotlight expected changes to everyday life in the big city, caused or enhanced by the COVID pandemic. The date was set, of course, on the World Urbanism Day, celebrated across the globe on November 8th.
Three renowned experts met for a joined zoom Webinar, to discuss burning issues that are disrupting city life and changing the way we live.
The Panelists were:
- Udi Carmeli, Tel Aviv-Yafo City Engineer, Alumnus of the Azrieli School of Architecture, TAU Faculty of the Arts
- Yaara Gooner, Head of Design at the London Real Estate Company Labtech, Alumna of the Azrieli School of Architecture, TAU Faculty of the Arts
- Avishay Kimeldorf, VP of Planning and Chief Architect at Shikun & Binui Real Estate, currently a student in the Executive MBA program of the TAU Coller School of Management
- The panel was moderated by Prof. Tali Hatuka, founder and head of the Laboratory for Contemporary Urban Design in the TAU Department of Geography and the Human Environment.
To Hatuka's question about the significance of COVID regarding urban planning, the three answered in detail:
Udi Carmeli: "The crisis will make a difference, the question is how deep it is going to be, for how long and what to focus on. The typology will change. The city, as a concept of the human existence of all the desires of the human race, will not disappear for those who are looking for it. The crisis enhances both the good and bad sides of urbanism. Its too early to judge and make planning assumptions based on newspaper headlines. We plan 10-20 years ahead, but during the COVID pandemic we took tactical urbanity - following the outbreak of COVID we added 12 new pedestrian zones, small gardens and more bike paths, which would have taken us much more time without COVID."
Avishay Kimeldorf admits "today there is a need for agility and flexibility in planning, the small garden next to the house became a significant activity space for families, the high-rise building has become a safe space, the demand for apartments with balconies and gardens and apartments with a study has increased. Its about knowing what the public wants and needs right now." He also stressed "that flexibility should come from both the developers and the approving bodies, and together we must find the right solutions. The concept of community has also been given a twist, and along with it planning is changing in a more participatory and enabling direction."
Yaara Gooner, from London: "In London as well, there’s a sense of confusion and we are required to adopt flexibility and design creative and quick solutions for adapting our spaces to the new situation.
London is an international commercial city, and proximity to the source of livelihood has become a more important planning factor than ever.
Campuses based on pure mix of uses, enabling a full ecosystem, are now gaining momentum. A resident of the compound can live, work, purchase, eat and spend time in the same compound without having to leave it.
The complexes are not closed, but rather are connected with a number of public spaces and access roads to the city, which encourage pedestrians to walk through the campus and enjoy it too and not just the locals."
The discussion during the second half of the discourse was directed by Prof. Tali Hatuka to the future - what will the city look like following changes such as smart transportation and autonomous vehicles.
Udi Carmeli: "There is no one design solution that works for everyone everywhere. Urban architecture is closely linked to local character and tailor-made for it. Chemistry between people will continue to drive planning forward and leave people in the city, while others will want the opposite. I hope we won’t just live in bubbles. I want to continue to go out into the street and be surprised time and time again. The city has not yet exhausted itself in general, and especially in Israel, which is still considered a country in growth stages. The great educational challenge is the transition to the use of public or cooperative transportation in the future."
Avishay Kimeldorf: "There are a few trends that can currently be identified. I don’t think there’s a trend of leaving the city and returning to the village. This is a marginal phenomenon, and the apparent trend is less about development of agricultural lands into building of mega-neighborhoods outside the city, and more about shifting to work complexes within the cities, which will encourage urban renewal of older areas. In the complex projects, developers will have to adapt to the municipal strategy and develop the complex according to it.
We will see more use of entrepreneurial resources for social purposes, and more use of public land for economic enterprise purposes. There will be a much more substantial treatment of the soft issues that the developer did not touch on in the past, such as the participation of the public and the participation of diverse stakeholders as well as the innovation that trickles into the projects. We also produce flexibility in plans in agreement with municipal bodies. There are more collaborations with the city and there is feedback, where both sides can bring about much better solutions together. The real Real Estate map is the map of public transportation, cooperative transportation and mass transportation, as future centers will be built around them, and this is where the Real Estate world is headed.
Yaara Gooner: "The user experience in the office spaces will change, the population density in spaces will decrease, emphasis will be placed on fresh air, the element of one desk for each employee is no longer relevant, but rather the multiplicity of interaction spaces and strengthening interpersonal connections which can’t be created through the virtual world.
Each new building’s plan will have to meet a large number of strict standards, which will make it possible to brand the building on the market with a Green Building certificate. Bicycles, showers and lockers are now being planned instead of car parking spaces."
Among the viewers, all TAU Alumni:
Ashdod City Engineer Ram Aharoni, Or Yehuda Municipality City Architect Ziv Gadon, Omer Wolf - Senior City Planner in the Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality, Herzl Arviv - Board Member of the Israeli Export Institute, and many others.
The people behind the hit series "Tehran" met TAU Alumni from all over the world for a Zoom meeting
The TAU Alumni Organization, headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues it’s tradition of meetings with inspiring alumni, even during the COVID era. Hundreds of alumni from all over the world gathered last week to hear the alumni who created the acclaimed masterpiece series, the Israeli spy drama "Tehran".
At the center of the discourse, moderated by Dr. Liora Hendelman-Baavur - Director of the TAU Alliance Center for Iranian Studies and alumna of the TAU Faculties of Humanities and Social Sciences, were Omri Shenhar - Screenwriter and Co-Creator of "Tehran", alumnus of TAU’s Steve Tisch School of Film and Television, and Moshe Zonder - Creator and Head Writer of "Tehran", who studied as well at TAU’s Steve Tisch School of Film and Television.
The event started with greetings by Prof. Eran Neuman, Dean of TAU’s Yolanda and David Katz Faculty of the Arts, who greeted the attendees in three languages, promised not to spoil for those who had not yet seen ‘Tehran’, complimented the series' star Niv Sultan, and emphasized that the story is not about Nuclear War but the personal stories depicted in the series.
Omri and Moshe are not of the same generation, and Moshe the senior among them, was the first to answer about his experience studying at TAU: "The first year in TAU’s film department was one of the most significant years in my life, for example meeting the late Emil Knebel (Milek) as teacher of Film Direction". “The person who introduced Omri and me was the Co-Creator and producer of Tehran, Dana Eden”.
When asked by Dr. Hendelman-Baavur what about creating the series did the two like particularly, Omri said: "Who is the good guy and who is the bad guy? Which one do you identify with more - with your side or with the opponent’s?". Moshe: "I loved writing the character of Faraz Kamali". Omri added: "We discover Tehran through Tamar’s eyes, and it was special to do it through the eyes of a modern woman".
Moshe: "It was a challenge not to make mistakes based on ignorance or arrogance in presenting the Iranian figures, which led to a two-year research that preceded the writing process". Omri: "We met people who know Iran from the inside. You find these amazing stories, the ones that never reach the media. We brought that to the screen."
Moshe stated: " Responses to the series are coming from all over the world, but the most exciting, to me, came from second generation Jewish families who immigrated to Israel from Iran. Women and men aged 30-40, who came as children or were born in Israel and grew up ashamed of their parents’ Persian accent and their family heritage. Watching the series made them proud of their parents. I understand what they are talking about. I went through a similar process with my own family heritage".
Omri: "I was afraid that people might watch the series based on prejudice, but there were none. We get compliments, from Iran, for showing a different, less threatening side of the country, and that people there live their lives". Moshe added that "The series deals with questions of identity, nationality, immigration, the possibility of breaking away from family roots and the price of such choices. Everyone in the world belongs to a tribe, that feeds us a narrative since we are little children. Thanks to Apple TV Plus’ streaming platforms, viewers from all around the world can watch the series and everyone may relate to it, no matter what nationality or religion they belong to".
To curious attendee’s questions, they replied: "We have many ideas for a second season", but did not share more.
Moshe’s advice for the future generation of creators: "Write only about what interests you and excites you. Don’t try to aim at anyone's taste, and don’t despair if your scripts are rejected. The successful TV series ‘Fauda’ was initially rejected, as was ‘Tehran’. And most importantly - remember that writing is rewriting, over and over again". Omri added about building a career: "Even if you are involved in something else, keep writing. Until you succeed. It's not like in the movies, it's hard work."
Among the webinar’s attendees: Founder of Medivisor (a company that provides patients with medical information) Tal Givoly, CEO of DFM Dror Flomin (Flumin), Group CEO of Allium Medical Solutions Ariel Rubashkin and many more.
Head of the TAU Alumni Organization, Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues the organization's tradition of online events in a wide range of subjects with inspiring TAU alumni, and this time chose to put the issue of our food and beverages in the post-COVID era on the table.
Titled "Close to the Plate", five leading TAU alumni who deal with the world of food at all levels in their daily life - solutions to food shortages in the world or in the country, development of new foods and online shopping were just some of the topics discussed.
The event was opened by Amos Elad, TAU Vice President of Public Affairs, Resource Development & Alumni Affairs. He spoke about the unemployment and distress students are experiencing during the COVID era, and called on TAU alumni to join the fundraising effort for scholarships to help TAU students.
- Eyal Shohat, CEO of Sodastream International, Alumnus of the Buchmann Faculty of Law and the Coller School of Management, including accounting studies at Tel Aviv University
- Guy Rosen, Vice Chairman at Tnuva and Chairman of Millennium Food Tech, Alumnus of the Buchmann Faculty of Law
- Keren Mimran, Entrepreneur, Founder, VP Business Development & Marketing at Edete Precision Technologies for Agriculture, Alumna of TAU's David and Yolanta Katz Faculty of the Arts
- Adv. Galia Sagy Gazit, Executive Director of the Association of Food Industries, Manufacturers' Association of Israel, Alumna of the TAU Faculty of Social Sciences
- The event was moderated by Netally Binshtock, editor of Calcalist's advertising and marketing section, Alumna of the TAU Faculties of Humanities and Social Sciences
Eyal Shohat, CEO of Sodastream, shared how the COVID era has accelerated the company's online processes and said: “Consumers have shut themselves in their homes and avoided going out to grocery stores, and we have experienced a jump of hundreds of percent in online purchases of Sodastream devices.
I guess the trend will moderate, but won't disappear. Online activities have high variable costs such as collection, packaging, shipping and more, but the consumer definitely indicates that it is his favorite channel during such periods."
Eyal revealed the brilliant idea of converting Sodastream technology in favor of manufacturing respirators - "It all started with a phone call I received from a senior official at Ein Kerem Hospital – Hadassah Medical Center, with a request that we try to produce high flow oxygen machines. Turns out there aren't many of those around the world, and of all things – our Soda machines that mix CO2 with water are suitable for it. Against the background of the apocalyptic prophecies of thousands of people needing respirators, we did not think twice and ran ahead to develop the device. We have a working device that is in clinical trials at Hadassah, which also receives backing from the Ministry of Health. We will wait for the results and make decisions."
Guy Rosen, Vice Chairman at Tnuva and Chairman of Millennium Food Tech, said: "The main lesson from the COVID era is that the State of Israel must cultivate and maintain an independent and strong food industry, and strong agriculture to ensure food security for its citizens even in times of crisis."
He also noted: "COVID has not revolutionized the world of food, but it has certainly accelerated strong trends like switching to healthier foods and plant-based protein substitutes."
Keren Mimran, Entrepreneur, Founder, VP Business Development & Marketing at Edete Precision Technologies for Agriculture, spoke about future foods from the Research & Development aspect, and explained about artificial pollination experiments: "The pollination is basically the sex and fertilization process of plants. Our experiments from the last four years show good results of increasing crop yields without dependency on the weather. This is an area that deals with ensuring the supply of food and reducing the risks of food shortages."
Adv. Galia Sagy Gazit, Executive Director of the Association of Food Industries, Manufacturers' Association of Israel, shed light on the interrelationship between purchasing Israeli food products and imported products: “The COVID crisis has reinforced the importance of a strong and independent food industry, which is economically and socially resilient. We can only rely on ourselves, while dealing with demand and supplies". She also referred to the Ministry of Health's labeling reform: "Technological innovation will help food manufacturers make food healthier. Companies have invested a lot of resources in developing new and healthier products and share the interest in the reform's success."
Everyone agreed that the direct relationship between producers and customers, which stood out and gained momentum during the COVID era, is an issue that challenges the food industry. Questions like what to do with the information we get from online clients or how to maximize everything are still open, and there is still a long way to go.
Tel Aviv University and the TAU Alumni Organization are going strong with our series of meetings with inspiring alumni, which are currently taking place online.
This time, Emmy Award Winning Screenwriter and Director Gideon (Gidi) Raff, Alumnus of TAU’s Steve Tisch School of Film and Television, obliged gladly to share from his prestigious body of work.
Raff, who’s name precedes him in the global film industry, is the creator of the award winning hit television series’ Hatufim (‘Prisoners of War’), ‘The Spy’ (based on the life of Israeli spy Eli Cohen) and ‘Tyrant’, and Executive Producer of the American TV series ‘Homeland’.
Amos Elad, TAU Vice President for Public Affairs, Resource Development & Alumni Affairs, opened the webinar and shared what TAU is doing in these times with the large audience of global TAU alumni and friends.
With tension in the Middle East in the background, which could inspire many more extreme series’ the kind Raff excels in directing, he spoke about the challenges which the TV industry faces during the COVID19 era, and about the sources of inspiration for his creations.
The event was moderated by Adam Mirels, Founder and Film Producer at “141 Entertainment”. Mirels’ films were screened at Sundance Film Festival and won prestigious awards as well three nominations at the Independent Spirit Awards. His latest feature is Ana Lily Amirpour’s Mona Lisa And the Blood Moon, starring Kate Hudson, which will premiere in 2021.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, took a literal Time-Out and invited its alumni to an online Webinar dedicated to the world of Sports.
Titled ‘Time Out - Where is the world of sports headed?’ a selected group of TAU alumni spoke, each from their own point of view, about the hot issues in the post-COVID-19 sports world and the implications for the Tokyo Olympics.
The panelists included representatives from the fields of Refereeing, Tourism, Media and Academia:
- Ronit Tirosh, current chairperson of the Israeli Football Referees Association, alumna of the TAU Faculty of Humanities, and former Director General of the Israeli Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports
- Yoav Bruck, owner of Issta Sport, alumnus of the Coller School of Management and a former Swimmer. Israeli champion in swimming, who represented Israel in three Olympics (1992, 1996 & 2000)
- Talia Salant, Broadcast Journalist at the israeli sports channel, alumna of the Buchmann Faculty of Law
- Prof. Mickey Sheinowitz, Director of TAU’s Sylvan Adams Sports Institute, alumnus of the Faculty of Medicine
- Uriel Daskel, who moderated the panel, Sport Business Chief Editor at Calcalist, Founder and Podcaster at Kolyompod, and former Lecturer at TAU’s Department of Communication
At the beginning of the conversation, Daskel raised the hot issue of the day’s news headlines - the footballers and minors affair, and asked: Where does football stand as a transmitter of educational messages?
Ronit Tirosh was the first to speak, saying: "Both sides should be examined, and I expect that to be the case. Celebrities have a tremendous influence on teenagers. They need to know that they are role models, and they should behave as if they are under a looking glass. On the other hand, parents and teachers need to teach teenagers to set boundaries, and not to be easily tempted.”
Talia Salant, who has already expressed her opinion in a post that drew thousands of comments on Social Networks, said: "I felt that in an event of this kind, women's voices are heard less. Gender equality is weakened, and that is a message I want to convey”. Salant revealed that she started an internship at the Yigal Arnon & Co. Law Firm just when the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, and shared what she went through during the COVID-19 crisis: “The Sports Channel went through a crazy period. It felt like the sky were falling, and I admit that I sided with the pessimistic warnings, and thought that it was going to be a while until Sports events returned. The crowds must return to the benches, yesterday”.
In a sharp transition to the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, Ronit Tirosh said she was not sure that countries would agree to host the Olympics, take risks and commit to huge investments if a 2nd wave of COVID-19 will arrive. In her opinion, countries that already have sports facilities may have to be chosen, and everything will be done much more modestly.
While talking about philanthropy in sports, everyone agreed that there is going to be less money: Tirosh shared that the big concern is that there is a lot of black money as a conduit for money laundering, which the sports world does not want to be involved with. "The global economic crisis affects philanthropists who have reduced or stopped their support, and it scares me that the industries that will be harmed first are the unpopular ones, or the women’s sports."
Prof. Mickey Sheinowitz thinks philanthropy will continue, but there will be less money. He also outlined a timeline and said that decisions regarding the Olympics will be made in the winter. "If there is still COVID-19 in the winter the games may be canceled."
Everyone agreed that we would experience a saner and more modest world of player salary - there was a pay bubble for players and it is no more, and there is also the fear that Olympic players will have to find additional sources of income because sponsored grants will not suffice. Everyone supported the step taken by Alona Barkat, because if there is no money in your pockets, it is impossible to maintain such a high salary for players.
At the same question stage, the participants were asked what would they like to happen to sports the day after the COVID-19 crisis ends?
Ronit - "We are all equal and socially fragile. I would like to see more equality of opportunity for those who have been unjustly not expressed, such as women and youth."
Talia - "I want every sports supporter to continue buying subscriptions or tickets. Don’t stop."
Mickey - "Sports activities, competitions or games should continue. not only have we lost muscle mass, we have also eaten more and gained fat mass. It will take some time but we have to go back to what we were, otherwise sports injuries will increase."
The Tel Aviv University alumni organization, headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues its tradition of meetings with inspiring alumni, which are currently conducted as online webinars. During an event titled “Many Ways to Exit”, which took place on 25 May 2020, three leading alumni from the High-Tech world, spoke openly about the many ways to exit at this time: Liad Agmon, Tzipi Ozer-Armon and Omer Keilaf.
The TAU alumni community from all over the world, as well as TAU donors and friends, were invited to the meeting, and even though the event took place during the American Memorial Day, the response was huge, with hundreds of people watching the event during the peak moments.
The event was opened by Amos Elad, TAU Vice President for Public Affairs , Resource Development & Alumni Affairs.
It was interesting to see what the background chosen by each participant. While Ozer-Armon and Keilaf chose professional backgrounds that reflected their companies, Agmon (who’s little daughter stopped by in the middle of the event and demanded a kiss) chose a soothing background of lakes and landscapes rather than a Big Mac.
Liad Agmon - Entrepreneur, CEO and Founder of the Israeli Start-Up Dynamic Yield, alumnus of the Faculty of Exact Sciences and the Steve Tisch School of Film and Television at the Faculty of The Arts said:
"It's too early to say how the business world will change. the only certain thing is the acceleration of the digital realm, and specifically - the ability to digitally do things remotely: work meetings, medical diagnoses, shopping and even bureaucracy. A week ago, I signed a document in the presence of a notary… only the notary was in NYC, I was in Tel Aviv and the medium was Facetime. Two months ago, the chances of the New York State approving it were nil."
Referring to the home office phenomenon, he said:" I believe most people enjoy going to the office. Work is also a social event, not just a manufacturing event. On a daily basis, I have brief corridor conversations with colleagues, exchanging spontaneous information with employees. I do not see a situation where I make a random 3 minute zoom call to an employee just to ask her how her children are doing and how was their weekend trip. After COVID-19, we will continue to allow work from home, but we will formulate a plan for the right long-term balance. "
Tzipi Ozer-Armon - CEO at Lumenis, alumna of the Faculty of Social Sciences and the Coller School of Management, said:
“30% of our work is with China, where COVID-19 broke out, and we realized very early on that there would be a crisis. We spent the first quarter of 2020 preparing for the crisis. The dictatorship in chine enforced strict obedience which allowed work to go on comfortably despite the challenges”.
One viewer asked Tzipi how does it feel to sell a company, and how is it different each time a company is sold (as her company was sold twice). Her reply: “With a smile, the size of the check is different. But seriously, each new shareholder has a different agenda, a different strategy and a different style, multiple adjustments are required”.
Omer Keilaf - CEO and Co-Founder of Innoviz Technologies, Alumnus of the Faculty of Engineering and the Coller School of Management, said:
"I don’t think the COVID-19 period affects the automotive industry, which runs multi-year projects like the autonomous vehicle. There was a slowdown, but it is on its way out. In terms of investments we are not raising funds now, but are in the execution stage in order to grow. if we’ll have to raise funds I believe we will still do fine."
Referring to the workforce, he noted: "COVID-19 has some interesting effects, such as more efficient work of engineers - a direct result of a distraction-free atmosphere."
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues its tradition of meetings with inspiring alumni, which are currently conducted as a series of online webinars.
For this event, titled "The Environment - the day after the quarantine", Ben Hayoun chose to put environmental issues on the agenda, together with the best minds, moderated by Aviv Lavi , Journalist and alumnus of the TAU Faculty of Social Sciences.
Adv. Idit Reiter, Head of the Environmental Law and Sustainability Department at the Goldfarb Seligman Law Firm,, a alumna of the Buchmann Faculty of Law, spoke about the industry - workers - regulation triangle, and noted that many factories in Israel take environmental measures even without regulation. According to her, there is a correlation between the number of COVID-19 cases and the polluted city in which they live.
Sharon Barak, Co-Founder and CTO at Solutum Ltd., alumna of the Coller School of Management, said she fears that we will return to our crazy consumption habits soon enough, and it is not clear what will happen to the important process of non-plastic disposable utensils. She also noted that regulation is not enough, and the impact must come from the bottom up and not just from the top down.
Prof. Dror Avisar, Head of Hydrochemistry Research Group and Head of the Center for Water Research at the Porter School of Environmental and Earth Studies, alumnus of the TAU Faculties of Humanities and Exact Sciences, noted that people with COVID-19 defecate into the general sewage system, and studies from the last three weeks show that the active virus was found in raw sewage. From there, it might reach the groundwater, the sea, to agriculture and more. Research and our caution are of great importance at this time. Israel purifies the sewage and transfers the water to agriculture, and we don’t know if the purification is good enough, and if the bacteria during it kills the virus. Everything is disturbing, and is currently examined.
Dr. Ram Fishman, Researcher at TAU’s Faculty of Social Sciences in the Department of Public Policy, a Sustainability Specialist, alumnus of the TAU Faculty of Exact Sciences, noted that there is a decrease of up to 8% in greenhouse gases, but the ecological crisis requires reducing emissions to 0 within 20 years. Therefore, it is negligible. Environmental policy is being pushed back in times of recession, and this could be a critical blow. He says the ambition is to reach a more prosperous economy, with a greener life. It is impossible to get environmental improvement at the expense of human well-being, it is not a sustainable situation.
In February 2019, the Tel Aviv University alumni organization, headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, held a joint event with Institute of Legal Arts at the Buchmann Faculty of Law, headed by Dr. Daphna Avnieli, a former Tel-Aviv District Court Judge. This event continued the TAU Alumni Organization’s tradition of meetings with inspiring alumni, with a group of Superstars in the fields of society and technology, in an event packed with content related to the connection between society and technology.
The event opened with a dialogue between Eyal Waldman, President and CEO of Mellanox Technologies, a member of TAU’s Board of Trustees, and Omri Zerachovitz Alumnus of the Faculty of Social Sciences and currently the Tech Section Editor at Globes.
Following the announcement of the increase in Mellanox's stock on the one hand, and the delay in its purchase by Invidia because of the COVID-19 on the other hand, Waldman stated that he hopes a vaccine for COVID-19 will be found by June this year, with the help of supercomputers.
Waldman also referred to issues like black money, and said: "The more technologically advanced we are, the fairer the world will be and with less black money." On protecting privacy online, he said: "People who are worried about privacy issues have something to hide. I have nothing to hide. I assume that everything on my cell phone is visible publicly."
Afterwards, Omri Zerachovitz moderated a panel of alumni:
- Dr. Gal Ehrlich - Alumnus of the Faculty of Law, Dr. of Genetic Engineering, Lawyer and Patent Attorney, owner and CEO of the Ehrlich Group specializing in the creation, enforcement, and sale of intellectual property worldwide, including patents in all fields of science and technology, trademarks and designs.
- Inbal Arieli - Alumna of the Faculties of Law, Social Sciences and the Coller School of Management, Founder & Head of the 8200 Entrepreneurship and Innovation Support Program, Founder and Co-CEO of Synthesis, Author of Chutzpah: Why Israel is a Hub of innovation and Entrepreneurship.
- Adv. David Balsar - Alumnus of the Faculties of Law, Social Sciences and Humanities, Entrepreneur and Businessman, General Manager Innovation and Ventures at Mekorot.
Arieli said: "multiculturally and in order to maximize a team's capabilities, I do not think that creating a football team consisting of 10 duplicated Lionel Messi will be the ultimate team, because the capabilities will clash and not work as one piece."
She also noted that our entrepreneurs are used to working in an environment of uncertainty, because of the reality in which we live, and this is a huge advantage for entrepreneurs in general.
Sigalit Ben Hayoun, head of the Tel Aviv University alumni organization who opened the event, stated that "the organization’s mission is to form an influential community, which works for a better world, and we are very proud of the TAU alumni in this work and their great contribution to the community in which they live, in ways that affect the future for all of us. Today, we are happy to launch a new campaign with the participation of a small group of world changing alumni…”
Sigalit invited the TAU Alumni community to contact the organization and tell us about projects or social or environmental organizations in which they take part.
In December 2019, The Tel Aviv University Alumni community enjoyed an exciting evening with three inspiring TAU alumni: NICE CEO Barak Eilam, alumnus of the TAU Faculty of Engineering; Composer, Conductor, Pianist and Lecturer Gil Shohat, alumnus of the Buchmann-Mehta School of Music; and writer and journalist Lilach Cigan, writer and journalist, alumna of the Coller School of Management. The event, as part of the TAU Alumni Organization’s series of meetings with inspiring alumni, expressed different management skills and methods in the these different fields of activity – Music and Hi-Tech.
Sigalit Ben-Hayoun, Head of the TAU Alumni Organization, opened the event with the organization’s mission - to create an influential alumni community that works for a better world: "We are very proud of the TAU alumni for their hard work and for their great contribution to the community in which they live, which is changing our future for the better". She invited the alumni to join the social activism and share the projects and social or environmental organizations in which they take part with the organization.
Prof. Eran Neuman, Dean of the Faculty of the Arts, reviewed the faculty’s current activities, and shared some recent research topics, such as dealing with the question of how our brain responds to cinema, or developing interactive cinema technology in which the story develops during the film viewing according to the viewer's desires.
At the center of the evening, Lilach Cigan had a personal and professional conversation with NICE CEO Barak Eilam, A pillar of the Israeli technology industry who arrived to Israel for a few days. He spoke about NICE's success: "I recently pulled out a slide of our goals for 2020, from a presentation I gave in 2014, and the results matched the plans accurately. We are meeting our goals, acquiring companies all over the world, expanding and we have a critical mass in all the markets we wanted to be in”.
He also spoke about his childhood dream: “As a child I had no dreams of becoming a CEO, but as I progressed the dream took shape. Through each fork in the road, there were people who helped my decision to stay in the company and keep pushing forward… I grew up in NICE for 20 years - from the worlds of development to the worlds of marketing and sales, and I managed small and large teams. We grow people from within the company, because there are dozens of managers with the potential to continue to grow with us."
His point of view on work-life balance: "I prefer the concept of work life choices - I have two daughters, ages 9 and 12, and I am available for any of their messages and make sure I have quality time with them. And my tip is: stay focused and be total for the narrative that is happening now, and not what will come tomorrow. "
After them, Conductor Gil Shohat took the stage with a lecture on the art of conducting, in which he combined pieces of music that captivated the audience. He also gave Lilach Cigan his own tip, in tune with Eilam's words: "Live life in every given moment. This passion is the secret for both pleasure and success." Gil's mother, journalist Tzipi Shohat, TAU alumna herself, attended the event and admitted that she came closer to the world of music through Gil and thanks to him.
The Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization integrates well with the hot local cannabis scene, with a large number of alumni dealing with the subject from its various aspects. The head of the organization, Sigalit Ben Hayoun, identified the potential and invited the most prominent of these alumni to a panel of experts, which filled the auditorium at the TAU Porter School of Environmental Studies.
The event was called "Getting the Green Concept", and the key speaker was the most senior alumni - Associate Director-General of the Israeli Ministry of Health Prof. Itamar Grotto, alumnus of the Faculty of Medicine. Grotto took a detour from his pre-prepared presentation, and preferred to speak from the heart, which provided a few newsworthy headlines for patients and the industry alike.
Prof. Grotto updated that the Ministry of Health considers import and regulatory relief on Cannabis for medical use, in order to meet the immediate and deficient needs in the local market. In his words:
"There are still doctors who have to go through the upheaval, from a research & science-based treatment to a worldview of medical treatment in a different approach. The issue creates opposition, naturally. Much of the treatment in Israel today is based on mass wisdom.
I do not think that Israel's advantage is to grow Cannabis faster or better, but the research and development aspects. This is our basis - to learn more and more about the plant and its ingredients, and the purpose of each ingredient to achieve personalized medical treatment.
The ministry has a database of all patients and types of use, and this information is intended to be accessible for researchers.
The regulation in the field is very strange. At the global level, Cannabis is considered a dangerous drug. In the USA it is not allowed to include it in drugs or supplements. But in practice there are many drugs that can be obtained online. Israel chose adapting to the public and market needs. We will try to promote Cannabis for medical use by trial and error. The method is licensing – from researchers through industry and all the way to patients using the products. The government requires medical level quality assurance and therefore the products shall be sold in pharmacies.
The current situation: In a short period of time, many growers and factories started out, a phenomenon that can only be seen in Israel. At the same time, there has been an increase in the number of patients from 40K to 60K, and there is not enough cannabis to satisfy local needs. At the Ministry of Health, we are trying to find solutions. We want more growers and more factories to enter the market, and this will happen in the near future. For this purpose, we are considering regulatory relief that will shift some of the responsibility to the manufacturers, as well as other adjustments which I can’t currently detail.
Prof. Grotto reviewed the challenges which the Ministry of Health is facing, including mapping identical genetic lines of Cannabis in order to create more accurate uniformity, maintain quality, ensure continuous supply including examination of temporary import, establish the caregiver-patient relationship, and test the current unity that is a little like cross subsidization, including a mix of insurances and health funds”. In conclusion, he declared that “Cannabis is like the Tel Aviv University slogan – Pursuing the Unknown. "
Tzali Greenberg, alumnus of the Faculty of Humanities and the Faculty Social Sciences, Journalist and Economic Commentator for Yedioth Ahronoth, Calcalist, moderated the panel of Cannabis Experts alumni:
- Dr. Orna Drizin - alumna of the Lahav Executive Education program at TAU's Coller School of Management, Chairperson and CEO of Nexter and Chairperson of Nextage.
- Elah Alkalay - alumna of the Faculty of Life Sciences, the Faculty of Medicine and the Coller School of Management, board chair of IBI Mutual Fund Management.
- Erez Navon - alumnus of the Coller School of Management, Director at Cannbit.
- Prof. Dan Peer - alumnus of the Faculty of Life Sciences, Head of the Cancer Biology Research Center and Managing Director of the TAU Center for Translational Medicine.
- Major General Ido Nehushtan - alumnus of the Coller School of Management, Chairman of Kanashur.
- Shiri Eden - alumna of the Coller School of Management, Nishot Strategy and Research founder and CEO and consultant to the Sela Cannabis mutual fund
During the panel IBI Mutual Fund Management board chair, Elah Alkalay, talked about the buzz in the capital market:
"Everyone sitting here knows that the market has room for growth. Pension funds have not yet entered the field, and most of the investments are from private or mutual funds traded on the Stock Exchange. Before the shrinking, we have reached a situation where a third of the Stock Exchange daily trading volume was from Cannabis stocks, which is phenomenal. The new situation is that the worth has been cut in half from the April 2019 peak.
What does that mean? The answer is guesswork. On the one hand we are looking at markets with sales potential of hundreds of billions of dollars per year, and on the other hand what will determine whether they will evolve is the pace of regulatory change and the speed of research and development. Regulation opens slowly in Israel, Development in the US and Mexico is expected, as well as in various European countries.
Quite a few of the funds raised at high tide in the markets are used for research and development, giving us good reasons for optimism. It is much more difficult to predict the future of a specific company, and given that we are dealing with regulation, the timeline is also blurred. What is clear today, as it was clear a year and two or three years ago, is that the potential is huge and the money already raised has been invested in the development and advancement of the industry”."
Ahead of the New Jewish Year and before the start of the new school year, the Tel Aviv University Alumni Association held a meeting with Dr. Eyal Doron, a successful and inspirational alum with a bachelor's degree and PhD degrees in theater from TAU's Yolanda and David Katz Faculty of the Arts.
His PhD dissertation researched the study of the aesthetic experience and philosophy of the arts, after which he went on to do a postdoctoral research and an empirical research in the field of creative thinking and fostering thought flexibility.
Over the years, Dr. Eyal Doron became a world-renowned expert on education, innovation and creativity, and he returned to the TAU campus to talk with the alumni community about 'reinventing parenting and education in the 21st century', as the title of his best-selling book.
Tel Aviv University's Vice President for Foreign Relations and Resource Development, Amos Elad, welcomed the alumni and noted the importance of the alumni community, in Israel and around the world, to the Tel Aviv University.
Head of the Department of Theater Arts and Director of the TAU Theater, Dr. Sharon Aronson-Lehavi, introduced Dr. Doron, saying: "One of the most basic laws of the art of theater is the "Magic If" - The voice of imagination, creativity and imaginary thinking are at the heart of this discipline.
The words that appear on Eyal Doron's website's header - Creativity in action - really sum up the heart of the matter: creativity in action. As an action.
Even before Creativity in action, Eyal Doron is a playwright and screenwriter, director and creator, and I think the questions that Eyal asks and his invitation to get out of the box or reinvent it, his motivation to empower people and our connection with pedagogy are largely related to theatrical thinking questions - creativity, Originality and entrepreneurship based thinking."
Head of TAU Alumni Organization, Sigalit Ben Hayoun, informed that as part of the TAU's international fundraising campaign raising one billion USD in 10 years, the organization has raised 1,300,000 NIS from the alumni community so far, which amounts to about 110 scholarships out of the organization's 300 scholarships goal.
Ahead of the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv, TAU Alumni Organization held an all 'douze points' event.
TV and Radio personality, Journalist, ESC expert and the only one to ever host the (1999) ESC by himself - Yigal Ravid, alum of TAU's Harold Hartog School of Government and Policy, gave a lecture titled "Countdown to the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest".
He was joined by Singer, Composer and the first ever Israeli winner of the ESC Izhar Cohen, who performed his best songs, and here's a taste:
Another Speaker at the event was Head of TAU's Entrepreneurship Center in collaboration with Shenkar College, Mr. Yair Sakov, who introduced the new center to the alumni community.
In a rational decision, and not by chance at all, Prof. Dan Arieli was invited to meet the TAU Alumni community. Dan, himself an alum of TAU's Gershon H. Gordon Faculty of Social Sciences, attracted hundreds of alumni to the Bar Shira auditorium, all eager to hear the Behavioral Economics Guru's lecture on economic behavior that would allow us a better life.
TAU President, Prof. Joseph Klafter, opened the event together with Sigalit Ben Hayoun, Head of TAU Alumni Organization, announcing the launch of a $ 1 million fundraising campaign for 300 student scholarships from the alumni community.
Ben Hayoun encouraged alumni who want to make an impact and change lives to donate 180 NIS or more to the campaign: "Any donation can make a real change, and is a wonderful way to give back to the university and society. Thanks to TAU's alumni, we could change the future of 300 telented students for the better, allowing them to invent the next big idea that will change our lives for the better as well”.
The University Alumni Campaign is part of TAU's extensive international fundraising campaign, aiming to raise $ 1 billion in ten years and accelerate breakthroughs and excellence in research. Thanks to the campaign, TAU has already made a real leap in all areas in recent years.
Keren Shaked, an alumna who has donated a full scholarship and is a second generation of TAU alumni, spoke about the importance of knowing how to say yes, about contribution and influence. Shaked holds an MBA from the Coller School of Management and is internationally qualified in customer experience. She is the CEO of B-Pro consulting firm and B-Next campus for executive training in the New Age era. She is also a partner at the startup Shoodoo, an innovative platform for predictive analytics.
Globes' editor Naama Sikuler, alumna of the Faculty of Social Sciences, conducted a one-on-one interview with Ynon Kreiz, CEO of the world's largest toy manufacturer Mattel, alum of the Coller School of Management and the Faculty of Social Science, and did not spare any questions.
In October 2018, a meeting was held with television personality Guy Meroz and with Avi Issacharoff, creator of the Netflix hit TV series 'Fauda'.
Meroz said that he completed his BA at the age of 56, and that the doctorate he is currently writing, about traffic accidents in Israel, is progressing slowly because his life is in chaos (which is the meaning of the word Fauda in Arabic).
He shared that the focus of his doctoral thesis is on how to reduce the number of accident fatalities by 50%, but added that the issue is not really a national priority, unfortunately: "130 kilometers of separation fence on Route 90, at a cost of NIS 60 million, would have prevented an entire family from dying just last week. This amount is equivalent to the purchase of four tanks or the establishment of one Jewish settlement".
Avi Issacharoff, the main speaker of the evening, told the alumni that "the success of 'Fuda' is a mystery to me, it was almost by mistake, as our intention was to write a book about the undercover IDF units. We tried to bring both sides - the Israeli and the Palestinian - approached the different players in the TV industry, and we heard a lot of no, no, no until we heard Yes".
During his lecture he showed clips from the show and mentioned that they were filmed in the Arab towns Tira and Kafr Qasim, where the production team (which includes more than 100 people) received excellent hospitality, and he also spoke of the actors who became celebrities in both the Jewish and Arab communities, and of the diverse reactions he had personally received from the West Bank and other Arab countries.
After both speeches, the alumni enjoyed a musical performance of the Beatles' songs performed by the tribute band ummagumma.
In a meeting held in May 2018, under the theme of '70 Years of Innovation,' it was Prof. Amnon Shashua, Co-Founder of Mobileye and alumni of TAU's Mathematics and Computer Science departments, who shared Mibileye's story.
At the start of his speech, Shashua surprised with a sincere confession: "Everything you'll see and hear today is in a scientific stage. The question is how to turn everything into massive and affordable use, and the experimental cars are still far from it. In addition, it is impossible to maintain an entire industry without ensuring safety".
Referring to driving lessons, he said: "There is an enigma here. We all had to take driving lessons and dozens of them, which means driving is complicated thing, but on the other hand everyone is free to drive. That's why we need AI". Shashua also lingered on the issue of the very precise maps required for an autonomous vehicle, well beyond the level of Waze, and said that even here the mission had not yet been completed. Drivers, by the way, he calls "Car Agents".
To close 2017, four leading alumni of the TAU Faculty of Humanities participated in an evening of inspiration & music, during which each of them shared their own different roads to success: MK Yaakov Perry of the 'Yesh Atid' Party, Keren Elazari, analyst and cyber researcher at TAU, Motti Elmaliach, CEO of Bezeq International, and Dr. Amir Yerucham, Historian and member of the band "Shabak Samech".
MK Yaakov Perry was the first speaker and said, "My studies in the History of the Middle East department fascinated me. As a result, and while still a student, I chose to enlist in the Shin Bet Service. It was the humanities, together with the world of music, that gave me the tools for the choices I made during my life. From them I drew on improvisational abilities, teamwork alongside leadership and discipline. At every decision making junction I understood that we do not have to put boundaries between the different content worlds that make us up... tools from one place will connect to another, as the world of content from which I came served me in every twist of my road."
Keren Elazari added to that, saying: "The studies of Humanities have helped me to develop critical and analytical thinking about the world and the course of history. In a very similar way to the hacker community, alumni of the humanities are those who do not accept reality as it is without discourse. They are the ones aspiring to change the world, to break conventions, to challenge existing perceptions, to point out systemic failures, and to present new paradigms that will reshape our future".
On 2 January 2017, the 5th meeting with Inspiring Alumni event was held in conclusion of a fruitful year of activities with and for TAU Alumni, and in celebration of the beginning of 2017. In the center of this meeting will be the inspiring story of Yuval Tal, Faculty of Engineering alumn, founder and president of Payoneer.
Then the alumni enjoyed a special performance by the Singer, Musician and Composer David Broza.
The next meeting, in March 2016, was held in the spirit of International Women's Day. Theater, TV and movie actor Limor Goldstein, alumna of the Theater department in the Faculty of the Arts, told her personal story, speaking of key sentences from her parental home, which had guided her and shaped her personality, such as: 'Don't place all your eggs in one basket'. She went on to describe how her love for acting got the better of this golden rule, and how, despite everything, she ended up placing all her eggs in the basket of her beloved profession.
The event ended with a performance of the feminine trio 'Shlosharot' - Aya Korem, Raz Shmueli & Michal Geva – with a tribute to Israeli singing trios through the years.
The third meeting was held in December 2015 at Zappa Herzliya, in interview format. Revital Hendler, alumna of the Steve Tisch School of Film & Television in the Faculty of the Arts, Founder of AllJobs and Founding Partner in BreezoMeter, interviewed Meir Brand, Faculty of Social Sciences alum, CEO of Google Israel, Russia, the Middle East and Africa, and VP of Google. Brand shared his vision with the audience: follow your heart, curiosity and passion, work hard and don’t look for shortcuts. His advice to entrepreneurs in the audience was: don't be afraid of failure, get used to the feeling, and learn to overcome it on your way to success.
After the interview the audience enjoyed an exciting performance by guitar legend Avi Singolda and his band.
The inspiring alumn in the second meeting, in September 2015, was Zvika Hadar – actor, comedian and leading TV host, who talked about the passage from the university to the University of Life.
His story was followed by the enlightening lecture: 'It's not what you know, but who you know'.
The first meeting in the series, which took place in May 2015, featured our alumn Uri Levine, Founder & Chairman of FeeX and co-Founder of WAZE. Levine said: "The entrepreneur follows his dream. He is driven by a dream and a passion – something he wants to change in the world… If you ask a real entrepreneur 'What is your next startup?' he'll always have a ready answer, because at any given moment, the entrepreneur has several ideas on his mind." Levine compared the process of establishing a startup to falling in love, and said that after the passion stage, when the project actually begins, comes the stage of sacrifice, characterized by ups, but mostly by many downs, and so "If you don't love what you are doing – do something else, something you love, and enjoy your life."
Levine's talk was followed by a helpful lecture: 'From small-talk to big success.'