Innovation teams in mixed cities; 5G networks for smart cities; Accelerating TV format startups; and much more!
by: Michael Ordman
ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
Medics rush to Ukraine
Israeli emergency NGO United Hatzalah chartered a plane and sent 40 paramedics, EMTs, doctors, psychologists, and therapists, to join its volunteers already treating local Ukrainians. The plane also delivered tons of medical supplies, donated food, plus other aid, and brought back 150 refugees to Israel.
10 seriously ill children rescued from Ukraine
The Israeli embassy in Bucharest, Romania helped rescue 10 Ukrainian children with serious illnesses and bring them to Israel for treatment. Israeli medical personnel flew on a special plane to safely transport the children to Schneider Children’s hospital in Petah Tikvah, Israel.
Health monitoring for Ukrainian women
The Gynescope from Israel’s Illumigyn (see here previously) is being used by medics from Israel’s Sheba Medical Center to diagnose cervical cancer in Ukrainian women.
Israeli field hospital for Ukraine
Israel is sending a medical delegation to Ukraine, to set up a field hospital. It will be operated by Sheba Medical Center, Clalit Health Services, and medics from other hospitals. The field hospital will include wards for children and adults, an emergency room, a delivery room, and a first aid clinic.
Delegation from Moldovia visits Israel
To help understand how a hospital is run during an emergency, a delegation of senior medical officials from Moldova visited Rambam Health Care Campus in Haifa. The visit had been planned long before the start of the recent Russian / Ukrainian conflict.
MS patient regains ability to walk
Malia Litman, from Dallas Texas, was unable to walk due to her MS condition. Then she discovered the stem cell treatment being trialed at Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem. Thanks to the treatment, she was able to dance with her son Zachary at his wedding.
Linking diet, bacteria, and the heart
An international study, led by Ben Gurion University Professor Iris Shai, has shown that the green Mediterranean (MED) diet modifies the bacterial population in the gut. These changes in the microbiome can bring substantial health benefits, including reduced cardiac risk.
Space medicine course
Professor Sara Eyal of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem has launched Israel’s first university course for therapy development research in space, or “space medicine.” Her first session attracted some 40 students from different disciplines such as medicine, pharmacy, nursing, and biology.
Healthcare agreement with Bahrain
Israel and Bahrain have signed an agreement for health care cooperation in epidemics and emergency management, education, and research. It will cover the fields of information sharing, digital health, medical innovation, and genetic research.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
Four female Israeli professors
On International Women’s Day, Technion UK emailed 4 videos featuring Professor Kira Radinsky (big medical data), Professor Marcelle Machluf (cancer – amazing video), Professor Shulamit Levenberg (cultured meat – BBC video) & Professor Asya Rolls (brain-activated immune responses).
Innovation teams in mixed cities
The Israeli Hazira program (see here previously) is bringing innovation to mixed Jewish-Arab cities. Around a dozen “Innovation Teams” have now been established in Acre, Bat Yam, Ashdod, Sakhnin, Beit Shemesh, Netanya, Ashkelon, Umm al-Fahm, Lod, Eilat, and in the Negev.
Israeli Arab professor explains diversity
Professor Mona Khoury-Kassbari, Vice President of Diversity and Strategy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (see here previously), led a discussion with 40 top officials and professionals in Chicago. She focused on innovative strategies that Israel implements to integrate minorities.
Jews & Arabs thrive together
More about Israel’s Unistream Association (see here previously) – a three-year program bringing together Jewish and Arab youth from all over Israel to learn about business and hi-tech. Arab Unistream graduate Lara Musalem describes her inclusive startup in in the mixed city of Nof HaGalil.
The Bedouin woman who empowers others
Amal Al-Sana had a hard upbringing as the fifth daughter in an Israeli Bedouin family of girls. But she studied for a PhD and helped found the Ajeek Arab-Jewish Center for Empowerment and Cooperation. Later she cofounded the Desert Embroidery Project in her Bedouin village.
Israel opens border to reunite mother and daughter
On International Women’s Day, Israel allowed a Druze student to return to Israel and be reunited with her mother. Nadine Beriq left Israel in 2008 to study dentistry in Damascus but was unable to return when Syria took away her passport and the border was shut in 2015.
Israel’s President in Turkey
Israel’s President Herzog was greeted by Turkey’s President Edogan at the Presidential Palace in Turkey’s capital Ankara. The Israeli President received a warm welcome, despite arriving in the middle of a snowfall.
Israel to train students from Arab states
Israel has launched the “Abraham Works” project that offers hi-tech training to students from the Arab states that signed the Abraham Accords, plus Egypt and Jordan. The plan was unveiled by Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister in a meeting with Morocco’s ambassador to Israel.
Free scholarships for Ukrainian students
Tel Aviv University and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem are offering scholarships worth millions of shekels to Ukrainian academics whose studies and research have been disrupted by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Funds include tuition fees as well as living expenses in Israel.
Israeli hi-techs help Ukrainians
Many Israeli startups have employees unable to leave Ukraine. Israel’s Natural Intelligence, for example, offered its Ukrainian employees up to $3000 in emergency grants. Several members of Wix in Israel flew to Poland to meet some of Wix’s 1,000 Ukrainian workers, many now refugees.
Israel’s life-saving border clinic
This article describes the vital work performed at the Polish border with Ukraine by NATAN, Mashav, Sheba medical center, Clalit Health Services, Schneider Children’s Medical Center, and Hadassah Medical Center. Just some of the many Israeli organizations saving refugees lives.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
R&D agreement with UK
UK Science Minister George Freeman met key players in the Israeli scientific community. He tweeted: “Thank you to all the brilliant scientists, entrepreneurs, investors and policymakers in Israel for a brilliant visit and agreement on a new UK-Israel R&D collaboration.”
Tech movement for youth
Israeli-founded Loop is a tech academy for global youth. It teaches coding to children aged 7 – 18 and is a unique combination of a youth movement and a tech incubator. Its student “loopers” learn computer science so they can become part of the hi-tech industry and build their own startups.
Developing tech talent in Nazareth
Altooro is a startup that assesses the talent of developers and gives numerical and statistical values to their abilities. Its founder, Mo Mitwaly is also a mentor for Loop, helping to educate young Arab tech students in Nazareth so that they can eventually create their own startups.
Transforming transport in Seoul City
Israel’s Autotalks (see here previously) has deployed its V2X (Vehicle to anything) systems on nearly 2,000 buses and related infrastructure in Seoul City. The advanced system alerts drivers of pedestrian collision, school zones, road and weather conditions warnings, and more.
5G networks for smart cities
Israel’s Juganu (see here previously) is partnering Qualcomm and Nokia to build 5G networks for smart cities. Juganu’s technology has been deployed in 15 countries including Israel, Mexico, Brazil, Guatemala, the U.S, and Greece.
How the continents were formed
Professor Roi Granot of Israel’s Ben Gurion University pioneered the use of magnetometer data (the magnetic field of rocks) to date the oceanic crust. In a recent study, Gronot together with Dutch scientists have shown that an event 105 million years ago shaped how the world looks today.
Joint archaeological research
The University of Haifa (UofH) and Israel’s Technion Institute are launching a joint archaeology research fund. It follows the UofH establishing the School of Archaeology and Maritime Cultures, which will revolutionize archaeological research in Israel.
Legal path to driverless Israeli cars
Israel’s parliament (Knesset) has passed legislation to allow autonomous shared taxis on Israeli roads, carrying passengers but without a safety driver. It paves the way for Mobileye, Intel’s Jerusalem-based subsidiary, to roll out “robo-taxis” and ride-hailing services in Tel Aviv this year.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
Government debt cut in half
Israel’s budget deficit fell to 2.2% of GDP for the 12 months to Feb 2022, compared to 4.5% at the end of 2021. In the month of Feb itself, the government had a rare budgetary surplus of NIS 4 billion due to high revenues from taxes, although Israel’s tax burden is the sixth lowest in the OECD.
100 Turkish businesspeople visit Tel Aviv
A delegation of more than 100 senior Turkish businesspeople arrived in Tel Aviv for meetings with their Israeli counterparts. During the visit, the Turkish Exporters Assembly signed a cooperation agreement with Israel’s Federation of International Chambers of Commerce.
Finland buys Israeli
Finland’s defense ministry has decided to purchase defense systems from one of two Israeli companies, either Israel Aerospace Industries or Rafael Advanced Systems. Both companies beat competition from Germany, Norway, and the UK. Finland wants to protect its long border with Russia.
Preparing for a busy Passover
The Israel Airports Authority (IAA) estimates that 1.5 million passengers will pass through Ben Gurion airport around the time of the Passover holiday in April. It will certainly be the busiest holiday season for two years, as the tourist industry recovers from the impact of the Covid pandemic.
The largest ever profit by an Israeli company
Israeli shipping giant Zim has just reported the largest ever annual net profit ($4.65 billion) achieved by an Israeli company. It will also pay out the biggest ever dividend – $2.04 billion. Since its Jan 2021 IPO, Zim’s market value has increased five-fold to $8.9 billion.
Carrefour comes to Israel
French corporation Carrefour has signed an agreement to gradually convert over 150 branches of the Yeinot Bitan supermarket chain to Carrefour branches. Its franchise is for a minimum of 20 years. Carrefour is the largest international retailer to enter Israel.
Another Israeli takeover by Nvidia
US computer giant Nvidia, has just acquired Israel’s Excelero, a provider of enterprise data storage and block storage solutions. Nvidia employs 2,800 Israelis at seven 7 R&D centers – the most outside the US. Sites include Yoknean (Mellanox), Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Ra’anana, and Beersheba.
Brewing beer delivered results
Just after the launch of Israel’s BeerBazaar the Coronavirus pandemic caused a massive surge in home delivery orders. With no software available, founder Avi Moskowitz developed PrettyDamnQuick to handle delivery logistics. It has now processed over 100,000 orders for many merchants.
Investment in Israeli startups to 13/3/22:
Axonius raised $200 million; StarkWare raised $100+ million; DataRails raised $50 million; Cybersixgill raised $35 million; Cider Security raised $32 million; Blinkops raised $26 million; Autobrains raised $19 million; Lendai raised $13+ million; Urecsys raised $7 million; Maverick Medical raised $5 million; Fortvision raised $850,000;
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT`
Things to do in Israel this month
March in Israel is the start of spring; the days get longer, the air warmer, and the sea calmer. It is the start of many festivals across the country, and the third week of March 2022 is Purim-time, when Israel becomes overrun with parties and special events. March is a great time to be in Israel.
Accelerating TV format startups
Jerusalem Development Authority’s Jerusalem Film & Television Fund, together with specialist VC Fund New Legend, have launched a new accelerator to support 12 projects creating TV and film content in Jerusalem. Senior executives from Netflix and HBO plan to scout it for talent.
Daily videos about Israel
Bet El Institutions has launched Daily Israel Videos – a daily email containing two videos on topics relating to Israel including Hi-tech & innovation and the Beauty of Israel. Subscribers can choose which days or topics they want to receive videos.
Israel from above
Two examples of the Daily Israel Videos – beautiful scenery of Mount Hermon in winter, contrasting with that of the Negev. Both filmed from a drone.
THE JEWISH STATE
Final flight of IAF’s founder
Harold “Smoky” Simon who just passed away, close to his 102nd birthday, was one of the legendary founders of the Israeli Air Force. He flew a Bonanza aircraft, one week after arriving in Israel from South Africa in May 1948. After the War of Independence, he set up several squadrons.
The women who built Israel
On International Women’s Day this article celebrates the women who helped turn Israel into a flourishing country. Highlights include the Women’s Farm established in 1911; women of the Kibbutz movement; the world’s first women’s political party; and the largest proportion of female doctors.
Friends of Zion
Dr. Michael Evans, founder of Friends of Zion, presented the Friends of Zion award to former US Vice President Mike Pence for his support for the State of Israel. The Jerusalem event was also attended by former US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman and former Israeli Ambassador to the US Ron Dermer.
Fanfare for Israeli President at Istanbul synagogue
President Herzog’s arrival at the historic Neve Shalom Istanbul synagogue was met with music and loud blasts of the shofar (ram’s horn). The President followed in the footsteps of his father and grandfather who visited the synagogue.
550 Bnei Menashe return to Jerusalem
Some 550 new immigrants from India’s Bnei Menashe community visited the Western Wall for the first time, accompanied by Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel Rabbi David Lau. The community claims descent from one of the 10 lost tribes of Israel and is converting back to Judaism.
550+ community Purim Megillah readings
The organizers of “Megillah in the Community” have scheduled more than 550 in-person group Purim readings of the Esther Megillah across Israel. The initiative will take place in community centers, public parks, hospitals and more, and geared to all ages and levels of Judaism.
Chabad’s mobile crisis center for Ukrainian Jews
In the Israeli village of Kfar Chabad, dozens of Russian-speaking Chabad volunteers work in a high-tech crisis-management center. They use emergency hotlines to provide the Jews of Ukraine with food, evacuation, refugee aid, housing, or access to medical assistance.
Welcome to the world
Jewish schoolteacher Chani Kochav Lev and her husband Eliezer fled Kyiv, Ukraine, just in time for their baby boy to be born safely at Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center.
100 Jewish Ukraine orphans arrive in Israel
100 children, ages 2-18, traveled more than 400 miles by bus from the northern Ukrainian city of Zhytomyr to Romania before flying to Israel, where they were greeted by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. Refugees on another flight showed their delight on landing in Israel.
Animal therapy for Ukrainian refugees
Israeli NGO MyIsrael is publicizing the efforts of its 18 adopted charities to help refugees arriving in Israel from Ukraine. The first charity to be called upon is Animal Angels (HAMA) that is taking animals that have been rescued from abuse to unite them with traumatized Ukrainians.
Discovery on the way to Israel
When an official from the Jewish Agency called the names of two Ukrainian women with the same surname waiting to fly to Israel, they discovered they had the same father. Valentina’s father had previously divorced Mariana’s mother. Both half-sisters have sons who have already made Aliyah.