Richard Melson

June 2006

Caesarea Forum

The Annual Economic Forum:

The IDI holds an annual economic conference, know as the Caesarea Forum.

Now in its 14th year, this Conference has come to be known as the most important economic conference in Israel in which the most central and pressing issues in the Israeli market are discussed. Every year, the Minister of Finance directs the conference. Among the conference’s participants are prime ministers (past and present), Ministers, MKs, leading figures in the business world, academics, and public officials. Traditionally, the last speech of the conference is reserved for the Prime Minister.

Each topic dealt with during the conference is researched by a team of experts who begin their work half-a-year before the conference itself. At the conference, the team presents its findings and proposes practical solutions to pressing economic and social issues in order to influence Israel’s public agenda and set forth basic guidelines for the formulation of Israel’s economic policy.

The conference is broadcast live on this site (with simultaneous translation into English).

The Caesarea Forum 2006 will be held on 20-22 June 2006, and broadcast live on this site! Simultaneous translation will be provided for parts of the conference not held in English.
Click here for more.

How the Caesarea Conference became the Caesarea Forum

The Caesarea Conference 2005

The Caesarea Conference 2004

The Caesarea Conference 2003

The Caesarea Conference 2002

You can call to The Israel Democracy Institute by the phone number: 02-5300888.

Members of the IDI - Israel Board:

  • Mr. Aharon Dovrat, Chairman, Dovrat and Partners

  • Mr. Sami Friedrich, CEO, "Shaldor," a business consulting firm 

  • Dr. Ramzi Halabi, Managing Director, The Israeli Arab Businessmen's Club, Member of the Board of The Yedid Association    

  • Prof. Moshe Halbertal, Professor of Jewish Thought at the Hebrew University

  • Mr. Eli Hurvitz, Chairman of the Israel-IDI Board, Chairman of the Board,  Teva Pharmaceuticals.

  • Mr. Yossi Kucik, Director, Kucik Entrepreneurship Management and Consultancy Ltd.,  Chairman of several public committees and corporations

  • Dr. Yitzhak Peterburg, former Managing Director of Cellcom

  • Dr. Judith Richter, CEO, Medinol

  • Prof. Gabriela Shalev, President, The Israeli Center for Academic Studies

  • Prof. Ze'ev Tzahor, President, Sapir Academic College

  • Prof. Yafa Zilbershatz, Law Faculty, Bar-Ilan University

Organizations in Israel:

The Movement for Quality Government in Israel (MQG)
The MQG was established in 1990. It works to strengthen political culture based on democratic values, the rule of law, sound public administration, integrity, and quality of government. It also aims to expose and combat political corruption and fight for transparency and accountability in the government administration.

The Israel Forum
Since its establishment in 1985, the Israel Forum, a non-profit, non-political organization, has been working to expand direct and personal contacts between Jews in Israel and elsewhere in the world.

Myers-JDC-Brookdale Institute
The Myers-JDC-Brookdale Institute is the premier center for applied social research serving Israel and the Jewish world. It seeks to improve the effectiveness of social services by developing and disseminating knowledge of social needs as well as the effectiveness of programs intended to meet those needs.

Shatil, the New Israel Fund’s empowerment and training center, was established in 1982 to promote democracy, tolerance, and social justice in Israel. Every year, Shatil provides over 1000 non-profit organizations with consulting and training in organizational development, advocacy, media, and PR, coalition building, resource development and volunteer management.

Sulcha means a peacemaking process used for restoring harmony after serious wrongdoing has occurred. The Sulcha website was launched in 2001 to serve as a neutral and objective source of information about mediation.

Think Tanks in Israel:

The Israeli Institute for Economic and Social Research (IIESR)
This institute specializes in economic and social research on issues relating to Israel's public agenda.

The Adva Center
The Adva Center conducts policy analysis, advocacy work, and public outreach to inform policy makers and the general public in Israel and abroad about equity and social justice issues in Israeli society. Adva analyzes equality and inequality in Israel in a way that integrates gender, ethnicity and nationality.

The Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies (BESA)
The BESA Center provides policy-oriented research on matters of strategy, security, and peace in the Middle East, in particular the national security and foreign policy of Israel.

The Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies
The Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies is an interdisciplinary research center devoted to the study of the modern history and current affairs of the Middle East and Africa.

The Floersheimer Institute for Policy Studies
The Floersheimer Institute for Policy Studies aims to research fundamental processes taking place in the multi-cultural Israeli society, to analyze the long-term implications of these processes and to propose alternative strategies of action.

Harry S. Truman Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace
The Harry S. Truman Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace is dedicated to fostering peace and advancing cooperation in the Middle East and around the world through research and informative events. The Institute provides fellowships for local and visiting scholars whose research is related to the Institute's activities.

Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies (JCSS)
The Jaffee Center conducts research on matters related to Israel's national security as well as Middle East regional and international security affairs. This Center also aims to contribute to the public debate and governmental deliberation on issues that are – or perhaps should be – at the top of Israel's national security agenda.

Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA)
The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs was founded in 1976 as an independent, non-profit institute for policy research and education serving Israel and the Jewish people. Since that time it has produced hundreds of studies by leading experts dealing with a wide range of topics on the world Jewish agenda. The Center's focus in recent years has shifted with changing needs, particularly the need to present Israel's case in the wake of the renewed Palestinian violence since 2000, and to focus on the return of anti-Semitism in the post-Holocaust period.

The Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies (JIIS)
The Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies was established in 1978 as an independent academic institute working on policy research in the fields of economic, social, and environmental policy.

The Leonard Davis Institute for International Relations
The Leonard Davis Institute of the Hebrew University is an academic research institute devoted to the study of international affairs. The institute aims to deepen the understanding of international relations by various means, including the promotion of research, the organizing of workshops, conferences and seminars, and the publication of research papers.

The Van Leer Jerusalem Institute
Founded in 1959, the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute is a center for the interdisciplinary study and discussion of issues related to philosophy, society, culture, and education. The Institute gives expression to the wide range of opinions in Israel, and aims to enhance ethnic and cultural understanding, ameliorate social tensions, empower civil society players and promote democratic values.

Organizations Outside of Israel:

US Aid - Democracy & Governance
This site contains a wide array of online publications, links to other democracy organizations, and in-depth information on US AID's democracy and governance programs worldwide.

The National Endowment for Democracy (NED)
The NED is a private, nonprofit organization created in 1983 to strengthen democratic institutions around the world through nongovernmental efforts. The Endowment is governed by an independent, nonpartisan board of directors. With its annual congressional appropriation, it makes hundreds of grants each year to support pro-democracy groups in Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and the former Soviet Union.

The Center for Democracy and the Third Sector (CDATS)

a joint venture of the Georgetown University Public Policy Institute and Department of Government. CDATS seeks to expand and to deepen theory, research, and teaching on the relationship between democratic governance and the third sector. The Center’s activities include a visiting faculty fellowship, a speaker series, and the first U.S. doctoral program in political science with a concentration on third sector studies.

International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA)
Created in 1995, International IDEA is an international organization based in Stockholm. It promotes and advances sustainable democracy, and improves and consolidates democratic electoral processes worldwide.

The World Movement for Democracy
The World Movement for Democracy is a global network of democrats, including activists, practitioners, academics, policy makers, and funders, who have come together to cooperate in the promotion of democracy. The World Movement offers new ways to give practical help to democrats who are struggling to open closed societies, challenge dictatorships, democratize semi-authoritarian systems, consolidate emerging democracies, and strengthen established democracies.

The Transatlantic Democracy Network
The Transatlantic Democracy Network is a cooperative project bringing together Europeans and North Americans to help strengthen democracy in the Greater Middle East and elsewhere. The Network is associated with the World Movement for Democracy, and Freedom House acts as the secretariat. The Network publishes Democracy Digest, a free e-newsletter that identifies issues and information, and encourages other forms of transatlantic cooperation.

The Woodrow Wilson Center
This Center aims to commemorate the ideals and concerns of Woodrow Wilson by providing a link between the world of ideas and the world of policy. This Center fosters scholarship and promotes the exchange of views between scholars and decision-makers. It sponsors research, meetings, and publications on history, economics, politics, international relations, the environment, literature, art history, and many other areas.

Brookings Institution
The Brookings Institution, one of Washington's oldest think tanks, is an independent, nonpartisan organization devoted to research, analysis, and public education with an emphasis on economics, foreign policy, governance, and metropolitan policy.

The National Institute for Research Advancement (NIRA)
NIRA is an independent policy research organization located in Japan. The Institute was founded in 1974 under the National Institute for Research Advancement Act. NIRA provides research information, conducts exchange with research organizations, supports research projects, and performs other related activities.

Actions in the Mediterranean (AIM)
AIM's objective is to develop networking between women of the Mediterranean region in order to increase their access to positions of responsibility at all levels, to contribute to a peaceful dialogue in this region and to identify common values while respecting differences.

Civil and Human Rights:

Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI)
The ACRI was founded in 1972 as a non-political, independent body, with the goal of protecting human and civil rights in Israel and in the territories under Israeli control. ACRI is Israel’s largest and leading human rights organization, and the only body to address the full range of human rights: from the right to liberty through freedom of information; from the right to education through freedom of expression.

The Israeli Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories was established in 1989 by a group of prominent academics, attorneys, journalists, and Knesset members. It endeavors to document human rights violations in the Occupied Territories.

Center for the Defence of the Individual
The Center for the Defence of the Individual is an Israeli human rights organization whose main objective is to assist Palestinians of the Occupied Territories.

New Family Organization
New Family is the first organization in Israel dedicated to advancing family rights and the rights of individuals within families. Led by experts in the field of law and civil rights, New Family is a human rights organization working to attain legal recognition of every family unit in Israel and to ensure equal rights for every type of family.


The Association for the Advancement of Civil Equality in Israel
Sikkuy ("chance" or "opportunity") is a non-partisan, non-profit, NGO that develops and implements projects that advance civic equality between Arab and Jewish citizens.

Democracy and Judaism:

The Avi Chai Foundation
The mission of Avi Chai is the perpetuation of the Jewish people, Judaism, and the centrality of the State of Israel to the Jewish people through encouraging those of the Jewish faith towards greater commitment to Jewish observance and lifestyle by increasing their understanding, appreciation, and practice of Jewish traditions, customs and laws.

Israel Religious Actions Committee (IRAC)
IRAC was established in 1987 as the public and legal advocacy division of the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism. The Center's mission is to advance religious freedom and pluralism, tolerance, social justice, and civil liberties in Israel. The Center fights for the rights of the disenfranchised and aims to create a diverse society in which all individuals and groups will be able to express their uniqueness.

Tzav Pius
Tzav Pius ("reconciliation decree") works towards creating dialogue between the different sectors of the Jewish nation in Israel. The organization was established in 1996 by The Aci Chai Foundation and began its activities as a publicity campaign after Yitzhak Rabin’s assassination.


The World Fact Book
The World Fact Book provides information on all countries around the world, including information on government, geography, people, and issues the countries face.

Hieros Gamos
This site provides a comprehensive, worldwide legal directory.

The Central Bureau of Statistics in Israel (CBS)
The CBS is a government body whose role is to collect, process, and publicize statistical information on the population, economy, and society in Israel.

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
This site contains links to an Online Libraries System.

Virtual Reference Desk

International IDEA Voter Turnout Website
This site contains the most comprehensive global collection of political participation statistics available. Regularly updated voter turnout figures for national, presidential and parliamentary elections since 1945 are presented using both the number of registered voters and voting-age population as indicators of turnout.

The Dinur Center for Research in Jewish History
This site provides links related to the State of Israel.


Israeli Government Portal
The site provides information and services given by the Government and includes links to different ministries and authorities. Additional information is provided about topics such as working, visiting, and moving to Israel.

The Knesset - The Parliament of Israel.
This site contains information on the Israeli Parliament, including history, past and present members, committees, and activities.

Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU)
The IPU site is on parliamentary democracy and has links to parliamentary websites and databases. This Union strives to achieve peace and co-operation among peoples and to firmly establish representative democracy.

International Constitutional Law (ICL)
International Constitutional Law (ICL) provides English translations of Constitutions and other textual material related to constitutional documents. It cross-references these documents for quick comparisons of constitutional provisions.

Israel Defense Forces:

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF)
The IDF was established to defend the existence, territorial integrity and sovereignty of the state of Israel, to protect the inhabitants of Israel, and to combat all forms of terrorism which threaten the daily life. The official site of the IDF includes general information on the IDF and its history, press releases, and information on different divisions.


The Adam Institute for Democracy and Peace in Memory of Emil Greenzweig
The Adam Institute develops and implements programs that promote education for democracy and peace, civic education, and methods of conflict resolution. The program targets Jewish and Arab adults and teenagers in the formal and complementary educational systems in Israel.

The Center for Civic Education
The Center for Civic Education is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational corporation dedicated to fostering the development of informed, responsible participation in civic life by citizens committed to values and principles fundamental to American constitutional democracy. The Center has international educational exchange programs for developing democracies.

CIVNET is an online resource and service for civic education practitioners, scholars, policymakers, civic-minded journalists, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) promoting civic education around the world.

Close Up Foundation
Since 1970, Close Up has worked to promote responsible and informed participation in the democratic process through a variety of educational programs. The Foundation is committed to developing new and better ways for citizens of all ages to gain practical understanding of how public policy affects their lives and how individual and collective efforts affect public policy.

International Democratic Education Institute (IDEI)
The goal of International Democratic Education Institute is to bring together Bowling Green State University faculty, community leaders and other educators from the US and abroad to promote democracy through education in such a way that students are provided the skills and knowledge necessary for them to perform their role as informed, responsible, committed and effective members of their respective democratic and political system.

Caesarea Forum Israel Democracy Institute

June 12, 2006