Science and Research
Mark azbel
One of this generation's leading Soviet and Israeli theoretical physicists, Mark Azbel was born in 1932 in Kharkov. Azbel was also a refusenik after the Soviet Union denied him an exit visa to immigrate to Israel in 1972. He was finally able to immigrate to Israel in 1977. For five years, he “trudged the Kafkaesque corridors of Soviet officialdom, battling the world's most efficiently malign bureaucracy,” the Christian Science Monitor wrote in a review of his autobiography. Today, he still lives in Israel and serves as a professor at the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Faculty of Exact Sciences at Hebrew University.
Lev Eppelbaum
Lev Eppelbaum was born in 1956 in Baku. The leading geophysicist has held positions of researcher, senior researcher and senior lecturer at Tel Aviv University. He is the author of about 360 publications, including nine books and approximately 140 papers published in international journals. He is an associate editor and member of the editorial boards of more than 15 journals. In 2016, he was elected to the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences as a foreign member. In 2017, he received a Knight of Science and Arts medal by RANS for achievements in geodynamics and tectonics. Last year, he was awarded the Gold Vernadsky medal by RANS for merits in ecological geophysics.
David Kazhdan
David Kazhdan was born in 1946 in Moscow. A mathematician known for his work in representation theory, Kazhdan moved to Israel in 2002 after serving as a professor at Harvard University in Boston. Today, he teaches at Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Kazhdan is a member of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Israeli Academy of Sciences. He won the Israel Prize in 2012.
Jacob Levitzki
Jacob Levitzki was born in 1904 in Sevastopol and made aliyah to Ottoman-ruled Israel in 1912. After completing his studies at the Herzliya Hebrew Gymnasium, he traveled to Germany and, in 1929, obtained a doctorate in mathematics from the University of Göttingen. In 1931, after two years at Yale, Levitzki returned to Mandate Palestine to join the faculty at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Levitzki’s research made a significant contribution to the development of modern algebra. Together with his student Shimshon Amitsur, he was awarded the inaugural Israel Prize in exact sciences in 1953 for their work on the laws of noncommutative rings. After his death in Jerusalem in 1956, a prize in his name was established to honor outstanding Israeli mathematicians.
Ilya Piatetski-Shapiro
Best known for his mathematical contributions, Ilya Piatetski-Shapiro was born in 1929 in Moscow and moved to Israel in 1976. Along with colleague James Cogdell, Piatetski-Shapiro developed the Converse Theorem, which finds some deep relationships between different fields of mathematics. He was invited to speak four times at the International Congress of Mathematics – in 1962, 1966, 1978 and 2002 – one of the highest honors in mathematics. He also received the Wolff Prize and the Israel Prize. Piatetski-Shapiro died in 2009 in Tel Aviv.
Avraham Even Shoshan
Originally Avraham Rosenstein, Avraham Even-Shoshan was born in the Minsk area in 1906. He was the son of Hebrew writer Chaim David Rosenstein. Together with his brother, Even-Shoshan moved to Israel in 1925 and created the New Dictionary of the Hebrew Language, which was first used between 1946 and 1958. The dictionary was refined and reissued in 2004 under the name “Even-Shoshan Dictionary.” The linguist won the Israel Prize for language in 1978 and the Bialik Prize for Jewish Thought in 1981. His dictionary is still considered the most accurate and comprehensive modern Hebrew dictionary to date. He died in Tel Aviv in 1984.
Zeev Vilnay
The influential geographer, Zev Vilnay, was born as Volf Vilensky in 1900 in Kishinev. He moved to Israel at the age of six. Vilnay is known as a pioneer in the sphere of outdoor hiking and touring in Israel. He published the “Guide to Israel,” which was published in 27 editions and translated into multiple languages. He was an expert in Israeli geography, ethnography, history and folklore. Vilnay was also a member of David Ben-Gurion's place-naming committee and received the Worthy Citizen of Jerusalem Award, as well as the Bialik Prize and the Israel Prize.