Israeli research sees major drop in international cooperation

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As the online newspaper ‘The Times of Israel’ reports, a recent publication by the Israeli Ministry of Innovation, Science and Technology points to a sharp decrease in the willingness of academic researchers from some European countries to cooperate with their Israeli counterparts since October 7.

The ministry report cites Norway, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Iceland and Ireland among the countries leading the boycott. Also on the list are Italy, which has a long and important history of academic cooperation with Israel, as well as Belgium, a leader in the European research community.

According to a summary of the report, 38 percent of Israeli research is conducted in cooperation with European academics, with 2023 reaching the highest level of cooperation in Israel’s history.

However, since October 7 and the beginning of the war sparked by the Hamas onslaught, there has been a reduction in funding of joint research ventures, as well as fewer exchanges of Israeli and European academics.

According to the report, access to laboratories and research infrastructure in Europe is now more limited for Israelis. In addition, Israelis’ participation in professional conferences has been either canceled or prevented by organisers.

The boycott is reported to primarily, but not exclusively, affect research in the fields of medicine, biology, physics, space and computer science.

Newly-appointed Science and Technology Minister Gila Gamliel said that she will work with the Foreign Ministry and appoint a committee to deal with the matter after the Passover holiday.

Source and full article: The Times of Israel