Bulletin: Military Occupation and Conflict, the West Bank, and Gaza

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Bulletin: Religion in Israel

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Bulletin: Israel and International Relations

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Bulletin: Public Health, Hospitals, and Professionals

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Bulletin: Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

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Report: Shatz et al, Developing Long-Term Socioeconomic Strategy in Israel

Shatz, Howard J., Steven W. Popper, Sami Friedrich, Shmuel Abramzon, Anat Brodsky, Roni Harel, and Ofir Cohen. Developing Long-Term Socioeconomic Strategy in Israel. Institutions, Processes, and Supporting Information. Santa Monica, Calif.: Rand Corporation, 2016.

 

rand

 

URL: http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR275.html

Israel faces economic and social challenges. The government has not routinely developed and successfully implemented strategic responses to socioeconomic problems that demand longer-term, coordinated policy action. Effective means to respond to such longer-term challenges may require a more systematic government approach to policymaking. Researchers developed detailed recommendations related to institutions, processes, supporting information, outputs, and implementation for the Israeli government to apply a strategic perspective toward socioeconomic issues and develop a formal socioeconomic strategy for Israel should the government desire to do so. They mapped the institutions and processes in the formation of socioeconomic strategy in the state of Israel as they existed at the time of the project in 2011; described the information used to support strategy formation; analyzed the evaluation and monitoring processes in current strategy formation; identified the gaps in current strategy formation institutions, processes, information, and evaluation and monitoring; conducted international case studies of strategy formation; and compared Israeli practices with international practices.

Report: Bowers and Fuchs, Women and Parents in the Labor Market

Bowers, Liora and Hadas Fuchs. “Women and Parents in the Labor Market – Israel and the OECD.” Policy Brief, Taub Center for Social Policy Studies in Israel, March 2016.

 

URL: http://taubcenter.org.il/wp-content/files_mf/womenandparents_eng.pdf (PDF)

 

Abstract
This brief examines Israeli women’s labor market outcomes and how maternity and parental leave laws in the country compare with those in the OECD. In recent decades, there has been an increase in employment rates among women – particularly among mothers with young children. With regard to payment rate and length of paid leave over a woman’s lifetime, Israel performs better than or similar to other OECD countries. However, there is a gap between Israel and the OECD when it comes to leave benefits for fathers and the design of parental leave benefits.

Report: Mapping ownership in Israeli media

http://www.the7eye.org.il/50534

The Israeli Media Ownership Map is an ongoing project of “The Seventh Eye,” intended to present, interpret, and track the identity of media moguls and business groups who control the media and its organizations in Israel. The chart allows not only to locate the identity of individuals and groups who control the media companies, but also to view their holdings in other areas, and thus obtain a certain idea of the web of interests in which they and their subordinates must act, including the level of centralization in the Israeli market and the cross ownership within it.

media-map

Click here for a PDF of the map.

מפת הבעלויות בתקשורת הישראלית היא פרויקט מתמשך של “העין השביעית” שמטרתו להציג, לבאר ולעקוב אחר זהותם של בעלי ההון והקבוצות העסקיות השולטות בגופי ואמצעי תקשורת בישראל. התרשים מאפשר למעיינים בו לא רק לאתר את זהותם של האישים והגופים השולטים בחברות המדיה, אלא גם להציג את אחזקותיהם מחוץ לתחום התקשורת – ובכך לקבל גם מושג כלשהו על רשת האינטרסים שמכורחה פועלים הם והכפופים להם, על רמת הריכוזיות במשק הישראלי ועל הבעלויות הצולבות בו.

Report: Cohen & Mimran, A Reexamination of Israel’s Home Demolition Policy (Hebrew)

Cohen, Amichai, and Tal Mimran. Cost without Benefit: A Reexamination of Israel’s Home Demolition Policy, Policy Studies 112. Jerusalem: Israel Democracy Institute, 2015 (in Hebrew).

URL: http://www.idi.org.il/cost_with_no_benefit/

 

Abstract

Under a policy that was in force from 1967 until 2005, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) demolished the homes of the perpetrators of terrorist acts and various security offenses, as well as their accomplices. In 2005, a commission of experts, headed by Maj. Gen. Ehud Shani, expressed its doubts as to the policy’s legality and efficacy and recommended that it be abandoned. Notwithstanding, the home demolition policy was revived three years later, in 2008.

The demolition of homes is an extreme measure. The arguments against it include that it is a disproportional infringement of private property rights, constitutes collective punishment, and that there are no evident gains that can justify its use. Nevertheless, over the years, decision-makers in the IDF insisted that the deterrent effect outweighs other considerations and justifies the infringement of rights. The Supreme Court of Israel, almost without exception, has given its full backing to that position. The underlying assumption about the deterrent effect of home demolition is based on the intensity of the sanction against the terrorist and his family as well as the rapidity with which it is implemented.

This study is a three-part examination of how the IDF reached the conclusion that home demolition is an effective policy and employed it for so many years without ever conducting an empirical study. We also consider what caused the decision-makers to revive the policy only three years after it was decided to abandon it.

 

 

 

New Publication: The Battle over Legitimacy; 2014 Protective Edge and International Law

New Issue of Terror and Democracy (27, January 2016), by the Israel Democracy Institute:

This issue focuses on the analysis of an incident around the investigation of an Israeli soldier in Britain on suspicion of involvement with war crimes during Operation “Protective Edge”. This manifestation of a growing phenomenon, whereby information on IDF soldiers is gathered for the purpose of pressing charges against them in foreign countries. Against the background of this phenomenon, you can read Prof. Amichai Cohen’s article on the employment of the universal jurisdiction principle against Israel, and an article by Dr. Moran Yarchi (IDI and the IDC) on the role of this event in the ongoing battle over the image of Operation “Protective Edge”.

הקרב על הלגיטימציה: מלחמת התדמית הממושכת של מבצע “צוק איתן”

ד”ר מורן ירחי

מבצע “צוק איתן” הסתיים בקיץ 2014, אך הקרב על הלגיטימציה שלו עדיין חי וקיים, כפי שניתן היה ללמוד מחקירתו בבריטניה של קצין מילואים אשר לחם במבצע. מאמר זה בוחן את העמדה לפיה מאבקים צבאיים כיום אינם מוגבלים למלחמה צבאית אלא הם כוללים מאבק על התודעה, ומכאן כל מדינות לנהל את מאבקן גם בזירות הלחימה הנוספות, ובראשן בחזית התדמיתית.

המשפט הפלילי הבינלאומי והעמדה לדין של ישראלים

פרופ’ עמיחי כהן

מאז ראשית המאה הנוכחית אנו עדים לניסיונות שונים להפעיל סמכות שיפוט בינלאומית נגד אזרחים ישראלים, שפעלו במסגרת העימותים בין ישראל לשכנותיה. על רקע חקירתו של חייל ישראל בבריטניה ביחס למבצע “צוק איתן”, סוקר מאמר זה את האופן בו ניתן לעשות שימוש נגד ישראלים במנגנון הסמכות האוניברסלית או בסמכות בית הדין הפלילי הבינלאומי.

Report: National Library of Israel, 2015 activities

Click here for Hebrew version:

2015_he

  • David Grossman entrusts personal archive to National Library
  • Prof. Jonathan Sarna, Scholar-in-Residence
  • Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks: The Battle of the Book
  • Piyut and Prayer Series (watch on YouTube)
  • Documentary Film Festival
  • Professional Training Courses for European Librarians and Archivists
  • Summer Program for Children from East Jerusalem
  • Launch of Young Curators Program Pilot
  • Digitization of 670 pages from 56 Israeli journals (see database here)
  • Archives of Jewish journalism online (click here for the archives)
  • Collection of Israeli archives (see AZ website)
  • Historic maps of Jerusalem on Wikipedia (see here)

Report: Hever, How Much International Aid to Palestinians Ends Up in the Israeli Economy?

Hever, Shir. “How Much International Aid to Palestinians Ends Up in the Israeli Economy?” Aid Watch, September 2015.
 
URL: http://www.aidwatch.ps/sites/default/files/resource-field_media/InternationalAidToPalestiniansFeedsTheIsraeliEconomy.pdf (PDF)

 

Extract
The strong correlation between aid and the balance of payments deficit discussed in this article indicates that, regardless of how one chooses to measure the relationship between aid and the trade deficit, the inescapable conclusion is that the majority of aid money finds its way sooner or later into the Israeli economy. As exports to the OPT account for approximately 5% of total Israeli exports (BOI, 2014:54-55), and the majority of these exports are financed by international aid, one can conclude that international aid to Palestinians contributes billions of dollars to the Israeli GDP and makes it possible for Israel to afford the continued military occupation. The findings here indicate that at least 78% of aid money is used to import from Israel, thereby covering at least 18% of the costs of the occupation for Israel.
The question arises of whether the Israeli government would end the occupation if aid ceased? Would the Israeli authorities rebuild the Civil Administration to assume their responsibilities under IHL in place of international donors? Or would they remain indifferent to a mass humanitarian disaster that could cost the lives of thousands of Palestinians? The tremendous moral implications of these questions indicate that aid is not something to be toyed with when so many lives are at stake. Nevertheless, the dependence of the Israeli authorities on international aid to the Palestinians as a mechanism to finance the ongoing military occupation gives donors important leverage to put pressure on Israel. This leverage carries with it political responsibilities. Donors cannot close their eyes to the fact that their donations are enabling the occupation and have funded grievous violations of international law. They are not themselves the occupiers of the Palestinians in the OPT, but decades of acquiescing to Israeli demands and conditions on the disbursement of aid have turned them into accomplices to Israel’s crimes.

 

 

Report: Koren et al, Israel Literacy Measurement Project (2015)

Koren, Annette; Fishman, Shira; Krasner Aronson, Janet; Saxe, Janet. The Israel Literacy Measurement Project: 2015 Report. Brandeis University, October 2015.

 

URL: http://bir.brandeis.edu/handle/10192/31191 [PDF]

 

Abstract

The Israel Literacy Measurement Project is an attempt to create a valid and reliable measure of knowledge of Israel. Beginning with the question, “what does it mean to be literate about Israel?” the team worked to establish assessment standards. Drawing on definitions of literacy in other social science disciplines and in consultation with subject experts, the research team developed a test bank of validated Israel-related questions. The question bank can be used with college-aged young adults to assess the extent and content of their Israel-related knowledge.

Report: Koren & Fishman, Israel Studies at Brandeis, 2013-2014

Koren, Annette, and Shira Fishman. Israel Studies Directory: 2013-14 Report Update, Maurice and Marilyn Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies, Brandeis University, September 2015.

 

URL: http://digitalcommons.law.scu.edu/scujil/vol13/iss2/7

 

Executive Summary

As discourse on campus about Israel intensified in 2013-14 and 2014-15, opportunities for students to engage in serious learning about Israel and its political situation became increasingly important (Koren, Saxe, & Fleisch, forthcoming). Current studies of Jewish students, however, find that they know little about Israel or its place in the Middle East (Fishman, Koren, Saxe, & Aaronson, forthcoming; Saxe, Wright, & Hecht, 2015 forthcoming). Previous research (Koren, Boxer, & Samuel, 2012; Koren & Einhorn, 2010a; Koren, Samuel, Boxer, & Aitan, 2013) documented the importance of reasoned discourse and academically rigorous education on campus. College serves as an important site for the development of civic literacy and awareness of the many challenges facing the globe in the 21st century. Education about Israel and the Middle East must occur in a way that furthers both of these efforts and promotes meaningful discussion inside and outside of the classroom. To help inform educational opportunities about Israel, the Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies (CMJS) continues to track the development of Israel studies at 316 colleges and universities in the United States. This report updates previous reports from 2008-09, 2011-12, and 2012-13. The directory explores changes from previous years in Israel-focused courses—those dealing specifically with Israel for the bulk of class time—and Israel-related courses, which offer more limited discussion of Israel. It compares 2008-09 and 2013-14, describes the number and distribution of Israel-focused courses by subject area, and discusses the number of Hebrew and Arabic language course offerings and the trends. Finally, the directory and report reiterate the importance of external funding and internal support for programs to build the field.

This report documents the following:

  • A 13% increase in Israel-focused courses and a 22% increase in Israel-related courses between the years 2008-09 and 2013-14.
  • Almost 80% of colleges and universities offering at least one Israel-focused course in at least one of the four years that directories have been compiled.
  • An estimated total enrollment of 15,000 students in Israel-focused courses in 2013-14— approximately the same as 2012-13.
  • The benefit of tracking Hebrew language programs as well as Israel-focused course listings in the future.
  • The importance of continued institutional and external support to ensure continued growth of Israel studies.

 

 

Report: Ram et al, Forecasting the Israeli 2015 Elections Using a Smartphone Application

Ram, Yoav, Ofer Moshaioff, Idan Cohen, and Omri Dor. “Forecasting the Israeli 2015 Elections Using a Smartphone Application.” arXiv:1503.04784

 

URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1503.04784 [PDF]

 

Abstract
We developed a smartphone application, Ha’Midgam, to poll and forecast the results of the 2015 Israeli elections. The application was downloaded by over 7,500 people. We present the method used to control bias in our sample and our forecasts. We discuss limitations of our approach and suggest possible solutions to control bias in similar applications.

 
 
 
 

Report: A Picture of the Nation, 2015; Taub Center for Social Policy

The Taub Center for Social Policy Studies in Israel Presents:

A Picture of the Nation: Israel’s Society and Economy in Figures, one of the Center’s most popular publications, provides concise and thought-provoking information on Israel’s long-run economic and social trajectories.  Each page of this booklet contains a single graph and short, accompanying text that, when combined, provide the reader with a broad and comprehensive understanding of key socioeconomic issues in Israel today.  Policy makers, the media, the general public, and the global Jewish community look to the Picture of the Nation as an invaluable and highly accessible resource on topics ranging from the labor market to education, poverty and much more.

For the English page, including PDF and PPT versions of the report, as well as previous reports (2002-2014), click here.

For the Hebrew page, click here.

PDF version in English: Picture of the Nation, 2015.

PDF version in Hebrew: תמונת מצב המדינה, 2015.