News & Events

New Books by Faculty and Leadership of the Mandel Foundation–Israel

The Mandel Foundation–Israel is proud of the contribution of its staff to culture, research, and education in Israel and internationally, as exemplified by the following books published in 2022 and 2023 by Mandel faculty members and by the president of the Mandel Foundation

Book covers of new publications by Mandel faculty and president

Faculty members and leaders of the Mandel Foundation–​Israel have published an impressive array of books in the last two years, six in English and eight in Hebrew. The English publications are the products of different perspectives and​​​ academic disciplines but share a call for leaders to take a courageous look at existing realities, to challenge them, and to identify possibilities for educational and social improvement. The Hebrew publications comprise a variety of genres, ranging from academic works through poetry collections and children's books.

English Publications

Book cover: A Jewish State: 75 Perspectives

A Jewish State: 75 Perspectives
Edited by Aharon Barak, Jehuda Reinharz and Yedidia Z. Stern
Academic Studies Press (English)
Yedioth Books (Hebrew)

Israel is a “Jewish state.” What does this mean and how does it align with the democratic nature of the country? These questions are at the core of a contentious debate that has been raging since the establishment of the state. This volume, co-edited by Jehuda Reinharz, president and CEO of the Mandel Foundation, includes 75 essays on the question of Jewish-Israeli identity by some of today’s best thinkers — Jews and non-Jews, from Israel and around the world. It includes dreams and nightmares, poetic visions and rational analyses, harsh critiques and songs of praise. Published in both Hebrew and English in honor of Israel’s 75th birthday, it is a first-of-its-kind nexus of thought on nationality, religion, politics, culture, society, environment, economics, and security, and is essential reading for any future discussion of Israeli identity.

View the publisher's website (English) >>
View the publisher's website (Hebrew) >>

Book cover: To Be a Minority Teacher in a Foreign Culture

To Be a Minority Teacher in a Foreign Culture: Empirical Evidence from an International Perspective
Edited by Mary Gutman, Wurud Jayusi, Michael Beck and Zvi Bekerman

This book, co-edited by Dr. Zvi Bekerman, faculty member of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership, offers in-depth knowledge on the challenges and opportunities offered by the inclusion of minority teachers in mainstream educational settings from an international perspective. It aims to be a unique and important contribution for scholars, policy-makers, and practitioners considering the complexities brought about by global trends in national/local educational systems and settings. It will also serve to guide future research, policy, and practice in this important field of inquiry.

Download the open-access PDF >>

Book cover: Leadership and Charisma

Leadership and Charisma: A Cultural-Evolutionary Perspective
By Micha Poppa and Omri Castelnovo
Edward Elgar

This innovative book, co-authored by Dr. Omri Castelnovo, a visiting faculty member of the Mandel Center for Leadership in the North, explores the universal and cultural foundations that underlie the dynamics of leadership. It asks key questions such as: why are we attracted to leaders? Why do we perceive certain leaders as charismatic? And why do some leaders who are perceived as charismatic during a certain period cease to be perceived as such in another period?

View the publisher's website >>

Book cover: Jewish Universalisms

Jewish Universalisms: Mendelssohn, Cohen, and Humanity’s Highest Good
By Jeremy Fogel
Brandeis University Press

Jewish Universalisms by Dr. Jeremy Fogel, a faculty member in the Mandel Program for Leadership in Jewish Culture, analyzes how two major figures, Moses Mendelssohn and Hermann Cohen, dealt with the perceived tension between the universal values characteristic of the Enlightenment and aspects of Judaism often depicted as particularistic and parochial. The author joins this lively debate in modern Jewish philosophy, offering a comparative examination of these thinkers and analyzing their worldviews from an innovative axiological perspective.

View the publisher's website >>

Book cover: Three Waves of Reform

The Three Waves of Reform in the World of Education 1918–2018: Students of Yesterday, Students of Tomorrow
By Ami Volansky

This book by Professor Ami Volansky, faculty member of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership, reviews one hundred years of educational reforms worldwide, and discusses three waves of reform. The first, which emerged after World War and was based on “progressive” ideals, put the student at the center of education. The second drew its principles from the business world and imposed competition, uniform standards, and measurable outputs on students, teachers, and schools. The third wave, which began at the start of the 21st century, seeks to adjust instructional methods to modern reality.

View the publisher's website >>

Book cover: Scaling-up Higher Order Thinking

Scaling-up Higher Order Thinking: Demonstrating a Paradigm for Deep Educational Change
By Anat Zohar

This book by Professor Anat Zohar, faculty member at the Mandel School for Educational Leadership, addresses the evasive problem of why truly effective educational innovation on a wide scale is so difficult to achieve, and what leaders may do about this. Examining the case of system-wide reform processes centering on teaching a thinking-rich curriculum, it discusses general issues pertaining to implementing deep, large-scale changes in the core of learning and instruction. The book summarizes insights the author has gained from approximately 25 years of engaging with these topics both as an academic and as a practitioner who led a national change process.

Download the open-access PDF >>

Hebrew Publications

The following are Hebrew books that were published by faculty and staff members of the Mandel Foundation–Israel in 2022-2023:

Book cover: Our life. Over

Our life. Over
By Tali Asher

Our life. Over is a mature, rich and multi-layered book of poetry in which Dr. Tali Asher, a faculty member of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership, presents an honest, sober and heartfelt picture of episodes from her life and explores various configurations of the concept of “family.” Her poems place themes of disintegration and fusion, absence of words and textual healing, and fragility and resilience side by side.

Read more (Hebrew) >>

Book cover: Pangs of Hope

Pangs of Hope: School of Peace for Refugee Children in Lesbos 2017-2022
Edited by Tzvia Walden and Eitan Shahar
Co-Edited by Smadar Ben Asher, Efrat Huss, Shifra Sagy
Resling (Hebrew)

Pangs of Hope, co-edited by Professor Smadar Ben Asher, faculty member of the Mandel Center for Leadership in the Negev, tells the story of the establishment of a school in Lesbos, Greece, for thousands of Jewish and Arab child war refugees by graduates of two youth movements – Arab and Jewish – in Israel. The book can serve as a source of inspiration and a model of action for educational institutions and organizations operating in the reality of conflicts, in disaster situations, and in multi-cultural settings.

Read more (Hebrew) >>

An Israeli Hasidut: The Slonim Hasidut in Israel
By Noga Bing

Today, Hasidism, in all its variants, is attractive to many. While today's Hasidism has a certain continuity with early Hasidism, it has changed in both form and content and has evolved over time and place. What is the secret of the appeal of Hasidism? And how does it attract the many people who find their place in it? In this journey through the book Netivot Shalom, a work written by the last rebbe of Slonim, Dr. Noga Bing, a senior staff member of the Mandel Leadership Institute, explores the nature of Slonim Hasidism in our day and age and examines whether it is an expression of a new and modern form of Hasidism.

Read more (Hebrew) >>

Book cover with picture of grandfather and girl

A Bag of Longing
By Ruth Calderon
Yedioth Books

On Tu B’shvat, the holiday of the trees, Rivka gets a seedling of an orange tree as a present from her grandfather. In this children's book by Dr. Ruth Calderon, faculty member of the Mandel Foundation–Israel and graduate of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership, Rivka’s grandfather recounts the special way in which the Jews of Bulgaria celebrated the holiday of Tu B'Shvat and becomes part of a celebration that has been passed down from generation to generation.

Read more (Hebrew) >>

Maiden in the Palace
By Ruth Calderon

In this children’s book by Mandel faculty member and graduate Dr. Ruth Calderon, Elisha has many questions but does not manage to find the answers. After he has finished reading all the books in the library, one hope remains: a mysterious maiden who lives down the hall. No one has ever seen her, but everyone has heard of her wisdom. Elisha knows that if he meets her, he will understand everything. But the road to the Temple is long and full of challenges. Will he be able to get through the journey and find what he was looking for? Find out in this book, which is based on a legend from the Zohar.

Read more (Hebrew) >>

Book cover with image of sprouting acorn

Act of Leadership
By David Dery

Despite many decades of research, we seem to linger in a state of confusion regarding what leadership is and if or how it might be cultivated. Act of Leadership by Professor David Dery, former director of the Mandel School for Leadership in the North, offers a new perspective on leadership, whereby what defines leadership is not one’s position or successful conduct but action of a certain kind. More specifically, leadership is about realizing the human potential to think, create or act outside the boundaries of what is known and safe in order to serve the greater good. What distinguishes "acts of leadership" is that they take place in a sphere of ambiguity and uncertainty. As such, acts of leadership are essentially risky, bold and adventurous. Obstacles and opponents are to be expected and no measure of success can be guaranteed. By placing leadership in its unique sphere of action, we realize that widely accepted prescriptions for rational or sensible conduct do not apply and that relying on them may shut us down before we even begin. We further appreciate that such acts exemplify "action" in its deepest sense: what we choose to do as free individuals in an uncertain universe, and how we do it, is a self-defining act; it makes us who we are.


Book cover with painting of two children on the beach

When the Sun Goes Over the Mountain
By Efrat Nisimov

In her first book, written over a decade, Efrat Nisimov-Sharshevsky, staff member of the Mandel Center for Leadership in the North, writes with maturity, compassion, wisdom, and sensitivity about parenthood, relationships, old age, and the meaning of life. In her moving, honest, and sober poems, she travels in time from her parents to her own experiences of parenting young children with her partner, as she moves between past and present, and even to the future, while looking boldly at matters of life that are relevant to us all.

Read more (Hebrew) >>

Book cover with image of a shirt that is half white and half blue, with a Talmudic text on the inside

The Haredi Yeshiva High School
By Benayahu Tvila

The Haredi yeshiva high school is an extraordinary educational institution. As an ultra-Orthodox yeshiva, it teaches its students to withdraw and separate, and focus on the study of Talmud; as a high school, it teaches a secular studies curriculum that is varied and open to reality. Over the years, this hybrid model has been met with fierce ideological opposition in the very community that it is meant to serve. In the last generation, however, its prevalence has increased, and these hybrid schools are beginning to serve additional Haredi communities. What are the historical roots of these schools? How Haredi are they and what is the ideological environment in which they operate? This book by Rabbi Dr. Benayahu Tevila, a faculty member of the Mandel Leadership Institute, provides complex answers to these questions.

Read more (Hebrew) >>

The contents of these books represent the authors’ personal opinions, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Mandel Foundation–Israel.