Shaping Israeli Society: Dr. Miriam Haran


Lecturer, Ono Academic College; Former Director-General, Ministry of the Environment / B.Sc., Chemistry, 1972

Dr. Miriam Haran (photo: Yoram Aschheim)My years at the Hebrew University had a significant impact on my professional life, motivating me to expand my areas of interest, piquing my curiosity about new ideas and technologies and spurring me to strive for excellence and contribute to society. I was greatly influenced by Professor Israel Agranat of the Institute of Chemistry — teacher, research advisor and mentor, he has been a role model throughout my career.

After completing my undergraduate degree, I earned my Ph.D. at Brandeis University and returned to lecture at the Hebrew University. I went back to the US to pursue my research at Rutgers University and became involved in the then relatively new field of environmental studies as an assistant to the director of the Center for Applied Studies of the Environment at Hunter College (CUNY). On returning to Israel, I was appointed Deputy Chief Scientist of the Ministry of the Environment, going on to serve as its Chief Scientist, Deputy Director-General and Director-General. Currently I head the Ono Academic College’s M.B.A. environmental management track. I also serve as Chair of the Environmental Committee of the UJC Tel Aviv- Los Angeles Partnership and as a member of the Israeli Presidential Task Force for Promoting the Environment in Israel.

The Hebrew University traditionally encourages its graduates to be active in shaping Israeli society; many are leading scientists or serve in significant public positions, influencing the realms of politics, the economy, science, diplomacy, law and education. My fellow alumni in chemistry are at the forefront of academic research; in top positions at companies such as the Israel Electric Corporation, Teva Pharmaceuticals and Intel; and leaders of the public sector in crucial areas such as improving Israel’s science education.

The Hebrew University must maintain its position as the best in Israel and as a world leader. It should continue to promote excellence by accepting highly qualified and motivated students and educating them to take part in shaping Israeli society. Effective government is essential for Israel’s future; it requires competent, dedicated, professional executives and managers. I believe that the Hebrew University is the best-suited academic institute to provide Israel’s future leadership.