At its annual meeting on June 9, 2015, the General Assembly of the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities elected Prof. Nili Cohen as its tenth President and Prof. David Harel as its Vice President, along with nine new Academy Members.
Prof. Cohen began her term as President in September 2015, replacing Prof. Ruth Arnon, who concluded a five-year term. Prof. Harel replaces Prof. B.Z Kedar.
Prof. Cohen is Professor of Law and former Rector of Tel-Aviv University, where she earned her academic degrees. Her research and teaching interests include private law, the interface between private and public law, comparative law, and law and literature. As a student, she was founding chief co-editor of the Tel-Aviv University Law Review. She is the author of Interference with Contractual Relations (1982) and Inducing Breach of Contract (1986) and co-author, with D. Friedmann, of the four-volume series Contracts (1991–2011). She recently published an article dealing with the wills of Franz Kafka and Max Brod. She directs the series on Law and Literature in the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies at Tel-Aviv University. Her books and articles are frequently cited in Israel’s courts.
Prof. Cohen is the recipient of the Douchan Prize, the Sussman Prize (twice), the Zeltner Prize, the Rector's Prize for Excellence in Teaching (three times), and the Minkoff Prize for Excellence in Law. She is the incumbent of the Benno Gitter Chair in Comparative Contract Law and the director of the Beverly and Raymond Sackler Fund for Human Rights in Private Law. She is a member of the American Law Institute and the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities, and she was a member of the Committee for the Codification of Israeli Law.
Prof. David Harel has been at the Weizmann Institute of Science since 1980, after receiving his PhD from MIT in 1978. He was Head of the Department of Applied Mathematics and Computer Science from 1989 to 1995 and Dean of the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science from 1998 to 2004. He was also co-founder of I-Logix, Inc., which is now part of IBM. He has spent time at IBM Yorktown Heights and sabbaticals at Carnegie-Mellon University, Cornell University, and the University of Edinburgh. After working mainly in theoretical computer science (logic, computability, automata, database theory) for many years, he now focuses on software and systems engineering and on modeling biological systems. He is the inventor of Statecharts, co-inventor of Live Sequence Charts (LSCs), and co-designer of Statemate, Rhapsody, the Play-Engine and PlayGo. Among his books are Algorithmics: The Spirit of Computing (1987; third edition with Y. Feldman, 2004) and Computers Ltd.: What They Really Can't Do (2000; revised edition 2003). His awards include the ACM Karlstrom Outstanding Educator Award (1992), the Israel Prize (2004), the ACM Software System Award (2007), the Emet Prize (2010), and five honorary degrees. He is a Fellow of ACM, IEEE, and AAAS, a member of the Academia Europaea and the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities, and a foreign member of the US National Academy of Engineering and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
The General Assembly also chose nine new Academy Members, who were inducted at the annual Open Meeting of the Academy’s General Assembly on December 8, 2015, during the Hanukkah holiday. They are:
Prof. Yoram Bilu
Prof. Yoav Benjamini
Prof. Ruth Gavison
Prof. Shafrira Goldwasser
Prof. Avner Holtzman
Prof. Israel Finkelstein
Prof. Joseph Kost
Prof. Adi Kimchi
Prof. Eli Keshet