​​The Azrieli Center for Israel Studies (MALI) is a framework for innovative, interactive research that brings together senior faculty and young emerging scholars at the doctoral level and above. MALI membership entails participation in one of the research labs and active involvement in attaining knowledge, disseminating it, and making it accessible inside the academic world and elsewhere.

The primary innovation of MALI is the cooperation it facilitates among members of its research hubs and the crossing of common disciplinary boundaries that takes place within them. This collaboration among scholars from the humanities and social sciences and the team effort to produce joint innovative and cutting-edge knowledge in the field of Israel Studies and disseminate it beyond academic circles are among MALI' main innovations.

MALI operates via broadly defined thematic research hubs. At the present writing, they are: World Jewry: Views from Israel, David Ben-Gurion—Leadership & Political Thought; Identities in Transition; and Zionist Ethoses in Education.

Alongside academic articles in scientific journals and university publications, the hubs offer courses in additional fields, public conferences, research workshops, round tables and short-term seminars for international students.

It is the MALI vision that the integration of perspectives among the different hub members will advance a broad and comprehensive discourse on Israel, one that will express the complexity and diversity of the Israeli reality and the colorful rainbow of cultures and worldviews that coexist in Israeli society.​


Researchers​ and research f​​ields​​

​  World Jewry - Views from Israel ​ ​
NameAcademic LevelMain field(s) of research
Reut RiziVolunteerThe public discourse on teachers' freedom of political expression
Tamar Yael GibliPhd CandidateSocial history, homeland-diaspora relations, nationhood and ethnicity, and research into the media discourse; her doctoral dissertation surveys the Mizrahi stsruggle in Israel in the American Jewish press
Talia Gorodess

Phd CandidateHistorian. Deals with the perception of David Ben-Gurion's national vision through his relations with American Jewry. Studies concepts such as "mamlakhtiyut" ("stateness"), national security, and homeland-diaspora relations. Examines historical demarches through the prism of poltiical theory. 
Leonel CaracikiPhd CandidateInternational and political history; 1970s public discourse in American Jewish communities concerning the UN "Zionism is racism" resolution; interested in human rights, anti-Zionism, and antisemitism
Matan Sandler TadmorPhd CandidateMigration and national identity; how American Jews interpret Zionist national culture in Israel; the wave of American Jewish immigration to Israel after the Six-Day War as a case study
Aharon Ariel LaviPhd CandidateThe history of ideas in the Zionist context; the Jew and the Israeli; focusing now on the growth of Jewish conservatism in tension between Israeli society and North American Jewry 
Dr. Adi SherzerAdjunt ResearcherThe growth of statist culture in Israel, the complex relationship of Israeliness and Jewishness and between Israel and the Diaspora in applying "mamlakhtiyut" ("stateness"), and relations between military and society
Dr. David GuedjPost-Doc FellowCultural and intellectual history of north African Jewry in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries
Dr. Einat Libel HassDr. VolunteerAnthopologist and historian. Her doctoral dissertation deals with the development of Reform Judaism as an outgrowth of Conservative Judaism in Tel Aviv: organizational patterns and identities. Areas of interest: liberal Judaism, founders of the Reform Movement in Israel, community studies, urban anthropology, cultural dynamics between Israel and North America, and postdocumentary oral history at Bar-Ilan University 
Dr. Aryeh TepperAdjunt ResearcherMENA Jewry: networks and relationships between Israel and the Sephardi-Jewish world, especially in the musical context; Ethiopian Jewry: the status of Ethiopian tradition in a socio-religious context; Geez and Israeli Geez; music as a mystical language
Dr. Ofir AbuVolunteerPolitical scientist, studies conflicts surrounding ethnic, national, and religious identities 
Dr. Natan AridanBGRI StaffThe feminine factor in Israeli diplomacy; the Jewish factor in designing Israeli foreign policy; shaping Israeli policy toward the Israel lobby and supporters of Israel in the United States
Dr. Aviad MorenoBGRI FacultyMENA Jewry, migration, networks and relationships between Israel and the Sephardi-Jewish world
Dr. Ben HerzogBGRI FacultySociologist, social perceptions of relations between the individual and the state, mainly as manifested in the institution of citizenship. Studies the consolidation of these relations after the establishment of statehood and the changes they underwent and what they mean for Israeli society. Currently examining the sense of loyalty to the state at the formal level. 
Prof. Ofer ShiffBGRI FacultyTwo main areas of research: (1) Israel-Diaspora relations as derived from perceptions of Israel "stateness," and (2) "Holocaust plays" as indicators of changing perceptions of "rebirth" as an antithesis of "exile"
Dr. Michel GhermanPost-Doc FellowPolitical history: the history of non-Jewish Zionism; the Brazilian New Right and the political use of Israeli Zionism as a central political element in the ultra-conservative political identity
Haim BitonPhd CandidateHistory: research into Israel and Moroccan Jewry from perspectives such as society, migration, culture, and collective memory
Dr. Elazar Ben-LuluPost-Doc FellowAnthropology: studies the intersection of Judaism, sexuality, and gender; interested in Reform Jewish liturgy in Israel and North America, 
  David Ben-Gurion: Political Thought and Leadership  ​​
NameAcademic LevelMain field(s) of research
Amir AizenmanPhd CandidateThe public education system in the Israeli welfare state era and interrelations of politics and society in education 
Tir a-El CohenPhd Candidate 
Omri Du-nourPhd CandidateUtopianism and realism in Israeli political thinking 
Shachar Re'emPhd CandidateHum anitian aid and international development in Israel and worldwide
Shimon IsraeliPhd CandidateZionist culture and the role of the Talmud in Zionist and Israeli society
Dr. Oren KalmanVolunteerMapai and the Zionist Labor Movement, development towns, and Mizrahi-Ashkenazi relations in Israel's first two decades
Dr. Gabriel HaritosPost-Doc FellowThe history of Israel's foreign policy, Israel-Greece-Cyprus relations, Israel and the "new states" in the 1960s
Dr. Omri Shafer-RavivPost-Doc FellowThe history of the Israel-Palestinian confict, the Israeli economy, and the Cold War
Dr. Maya MarkPost-Doc FellowLegal history, political history, history of regulation in Israel, Menachem Begin and the Herut Movement
Dr. Hila Shalem BaharadPost-Doc FellowSocial history; migration, ethnicity, intergroup relations, and social processes in migrants' habitus; social stratification in Israel; and research on MENA Jewry
Dr. Elia EtkinPost-Doc FellowUrban history, history of urban neighborhoods and communities, the Mandate era and Israel's early years
Dr. Gili GoferAdjunt ResearcherGender, history of the Zionist Labor Movement, the welfare state, welfare policy in Israel, education
Dr. Adi PortughiesBGRI StaffDirector of the Ben-Gurion Archives, researcher of changes in the Israeli Left 1967-1982
Prof. Nir KedarVolunteerIsraeli history, history of law, theory of state and law
Eitan DonyetsVolunteerDirector of the Ben-Gurion Heritage Institute
Shmuel AdlerVolunteerDeputy director of the Ben-Gurion Heritage Institute
Prof. Paula Kabalo​
BGRI FacultyHistory of civil associations and civil society in Israel and the Land of Israel Jewish community in the years  precedng the establishment of the State of Israel and Israel in its first three decades; researcher into relations between David Ben-Gurion and various sectors of Israeli society Diaspora communities, and the international community at large, all on the basis of leadership-follower theories. Her current studies deal with community resilience. A broad-based study in progress at the present writing centers on the phenomenon of neighborhood committees in Israel's first three decades: neighborhood committees in Israel as manifestations of grassroots and internal leadership 1948-1977
Prof. Avi BareliBGRI FacultyPolitical, socioeconomic, and intellectual history of the State of Israel 
Dr. Daniel RikenbacherPost-Doc FellowPan-Islam and Pan-Arabism in the Land of Israel
Prof. Esther Meir-GlitzensteinBGRI FacultyTwentieth-century history of Jewry in the Islamic lands, chiefly Iraq: migration, culture, identity. Her current research centers on the immigration of Yemenite Jewry to Israel
Dr. Havatzelet YahelBGRI FacultyHistorical and legal geogrpahy, land and settlement policy, minority rights, indigenous peoples, museology
​  Zionist Eth​oses in Education​  ​
NameAcademic LevelMain field(s) of research
Dr. Tali Tadmor-ShimoniBGRI FacultyHistory of Hebrew and Israeli education, curricula, and transnationalism in education 
Renana KristalPhd CandidateDevelopment of education of blind children in the Land of Israel (1902-1959); history of education and disability; perception of disability in Land of Israel Jewish society; social initiatives, policy change, representation and images of disability in Land of Israel culture; childhood and disability
Mirit Bat-Chorin
Phd CandidateSocial history with emphasis on youth culture, youth movements, kibbutz society, and center-periphery relations; pioneering and fulfillment ethos, and the changes that these worlds underwent 
Rivka GrossmanPhd CandidateTeacher training, Jews from Islamic countries, 
Dr. Talia DiskinPost-Doc FellowJurist and researcher of child and youth culture across the timeline
Dr. Orit OvedPost-Doc FellowEducation policy processes and history of education, focusing on curricula and curriculum planning, reforms and assimination in education systems, and Jewish contents in the State education system (religion and education)
Gili GoferAdjunt ResearcherGender, history of the Zionist Labor Movement, the welfare state, welfare policy in Israel, and education
Dr. Shlomit LirVolunteerGender and media issues in culture and in the public discourse
Dr. Adi BinhasVolunteerMigration policy, multiculturalism in the education system, migrant teachers, identity and belonging, NGOs acting on behalf of migrants, Israelis of Ethiopian origin; women from special groups in academia
Prof. Yair SeltenreichVolunteerEuropean cultural influence on Hebrew society in Land of Israel society during the Mandate era and in early Israel, particularly in the field of education; and the history of emotions in Hebrew society in the Land of Israel at that time

Dr. Ayelet Gil-RonenPost-Doc FellowHebrew children's literature, philosophy of education, and teaching of literature
Dr. Emir GalileePost-Doc FellowSociocultural-historical geography of various ethnic and religious groups, socio-historical geography of nomadic shepherds and indigenous peoples, tribalism in the Middle East, the Arab landscape in historical contexts, geography and literature, hiking trails, leisure and minority populations 
  ​International PhD Candidates   ​ ​
Nam​​eMain field(s) of research
Arman KachtrianReligion Studies, Jerusalem, Armenian Studies, Cultural Studies. 
Claudia DietrichGenerational Studies, Immigration, Cultural Studies, Qualitative Research, History from Below
Yuri KeumCitizenship laws and immigration policies, focusing on the interaction of exclusionary citizenship regimes of ethno-democratic states and universalized children's rights, aiming at: (1) an enhanced understanding of the distinctive status of children in the contexts of ethnically-grounded citizenship practices, democratic citizenship and human rights discourse, and (2) a refined theorization of chidlren's citizenship. 
​Liz SikResearch on Bedouin women and, through in-depth interviews, defining their personal and professional success and failure and within the larger communal context, what this says about Bedouin culture and vice versa, and how this cultural concept of success/failure shapes and defines the social, economic, and political realities.
This necessitates the exploration of culture and identity through the lense of success/failure where culture is a symbolic system unique to the Bedouin of the Negev which shapes the development of and expression of identity in all forms.