Israel is Europe’s third largest trading partner in the Middle East and its economic performance is among the strongest in the OECD. Israel is also a major political and security actor in the Middle East and Mediterranean basin. As a result, Europe and Israel share important strategic objectives, including combating terrorism and extremism, fostering stability, regional cooperation, and peace. The cooperation with Europe is vast and includes areas, such as cyber security, counter-terrorism, agriculture, water and food security, and innovation. The discovery of gas in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea opened further opportunities for cooperation.

Scientific collaboration is a fundamental component of the bilateral relations. Both Israeli and European academic institutions rank yearly among the most innovative worldwide. With high rates of R&D funding and a record number of start-ups, Israel is a central hub for global science and innovation. The scientific cooperation contributed to breakthroughs in research in multiple sectors, from smart irrigation, through child tumors and robotics. 

Europe and Israel share fundamental values and strategic interests and benefit from robust economic relations despite political differences. ELNET’s mission and programs serve to enhance mutual understanding of these common values and interests. 

ELNET in Israel

ELNET’s Israeli office serves as a central hub in the network, facilitating delegations and dialogues in cooperation with ELNET’s European affiliates and Friends of ELNET in the US. The Israeli office is also responsible for developing strong relationships with Israeli decision-makers, research institutes, businesses and civil society leaders. Under the leadership of an international board and led by Director David Siegel, a former Israeli diplomat, ELNET-Israel fosters Israeli-Europe ties, while educating the Israeli policymakers about the importance of strengthening relations with Europe. 


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Safe & Smart City Conference

The third edition of the prestigious “Safe and Smart City Conference” brought to Jerusalem top European and Israeli innovators, start-ups, investors and politicians.

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David Siegel

Chief Executive Officer, ELNET-Israel
David Siegel is former Israeli diplomat involved in foreign policy formulation at the highest levels, including as Consul General to the Southwest United States. He served as the Chief of Staff to Israel’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Director of the Foreign Ministry’s International Organizations Department and Chief of Staff to three of Israel’s Ambassadors to the United States. He holds an MA in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and a BA in political science from the University of Vermont.

Omri Attar

Chief Operations Officer, ELNET-Israel
Omri Attar acted as Chief of International Staff at ELNET in 2015-2016. He is a former Chief Spokesperson of The Interdisciplinary Center (IDC Herzliya) Student Union and has a broad background in project management within non-profit organizations and NGOs. He holds an MA in Knowledge-based Policy, Educational, Social and Public Leadership, a BA in Government, Diplomacy and Strategy, and a Certificate of Third-Sector Management studies.

Yossi Abravanel

Deputy Executive Director, ELNET-Israel
Yossi Abravanel is a former entrepreneur in the fields of telecom and homeland security in Israel and beyond, with extensive experience in work vis-à-vis governments in West Africa and Israel, and as a Jewish Agency’s Aliyah representative in Paris. He holds an MBA from the University of Sorbonne and a BA from Jerusalem Collage of Technology.

Benjamin Touati

Deputy Executive Director, ELNET-Israel
Benjamin Touati is a former representative of the Jewish Agency in Paris, political advisor of Israeli ministers and director in national institutions, including World Mizrahi Movement, with vast experience in project management in public and non-governmental sectors. He holds an MBA from the Jerusalem College of Technology and a BA in History from Paris University.

Julia Lisiecka

Research and Communications Manager, ELNET-Israel
Julia Lisiecka has a broad background in policy research, project management and communications and formerly worked at the EU Institute for Security Studies (EUISS), dealing with international relations and security topics. She holds an MA in Middle Eastern Studies from SOAS, University of London and a BA in Applied Sociology from Warsaw University.

Tamara Epelbaum

Operations Manager, ELNET-Israel
Tamara Epelbaum previously served as the Head of North American Desk, Head of the Latin America and Asia Desk and interim Head of the European Desk at the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit. She holds an MA in Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution from the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC Herzliya), a BA in Political Science from Columbia University in New York, and a BA in Talmud (Jewish Law) from the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS).

Yasmin Burk

Account Manager, ELNET-Israel
Yasmin Burk is an accounting professional with experience in management and accounting in private and non-governmental sectors. She studies accounting and economics at the Open University in Tel Aviv.