STEM 100 Faculty Recruitment

In Israel, our society, economy, and security are driven by knowledge. We need our finest minds living and working here where they contribute their talents to the continuing development of the Jewish state. Today about 10% of Israelis with PhDs live abroad—and they are four times as likely to live abroad as Israelis overall—so it may seem that Israeli PhDs are leaving in droves and that we have a serious “brain drain.” In fact, few Israelis stay abroad long-term. Nearly all of them wish to return, and most do. And when they do, they bring back knowledge and skills gained in prestigious postdoctoral fellowships and in top high-tech companies. We don’t suffer from a “brain drain” so much as we benefit from brain circulation. The problem with Warshel and Levitt isn’t that they went abroad; it’s that they never made it home.

Bar-Ilan has launched the STEM100 Faculty Recruitment Campaign to complete the brain cycle and channel the flow of knowledge onto our campus. This is a 10-year, $100 million campaign to recruit 100 new researchers in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics, medicine). The campaign emphasizes the growing importance of STEM for Israel and hence for Bar-Ilan. In fact, over the next decade, we will recruit about 150 STEM researchers—50 will replace retiring faculty, 100 will expand our STEM capabilities with new tenured positions. At the same time, recruitment will continue in the Faculties of Jewish Studies, Law, and Humanities, independent of this campaign.

STEM100 plays an integral role in the President’s vision. Many of these 100 new members of faculty will join multidisciplinary teams dedicated to high-impact R&D; these include the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, the Computer Science Department, the Quantum Entanglement Science and Technology Center (QUEST), the Data Science Institute, the Network Science Center, and the advanced microchip design laboratories. They will bring a wealth of experience teaching in institutions abroad; and as we strive to make our education methods the most advanced available, we will draw on that experience. They will also increase the proportion of Bar-Ilan researchers engaged in STEM, which will improve the university’s international ranking; and their labs will offer more positions for PhD students and postdoctoral scholars—many of whom will be recruited from among the best students abroad. STEM100 is a faculty recruitment campaign to launch Bar-Ilan to new heights, in education, in research, and in impact.

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