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The Blavatnik Interdisciplinary Cyber Research Center (ICRC) at Tel Aviv University is one of the leading cyber research institutions in the world. With Professor, Major, General, Isaac Ben-Israel at the helm, the ICRC spearheads the interdisciplinary scientific research on the information age, digital transformation and cybersecurity.

As part of the goal of researching new areas for the cyber industry, Blavatnik ICRC awards multiple grants to researchers and organizes multiple events throughout the year where researchers and professionals can present their theories and practical cyber applications.


The Blavatnik ICRC has awarded over $8 million in research funding to 250 researchers since 2014. The majority of the research specialized in Exact Sciences, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, while the other came from the Social, Law, Behavior, Management, Health, and other scientific disciplines.

The research institute has supported:

  • 95 funded research projects
  • 196 Principle Investigators (PI), including 80+ worldwide
  • 220+ Graduate students

Impact and outreach

Blavatnik ICRC has collaborated with other academic institutions around the world, such as universities in Singapore, Japan, Germany, USA, and more. It also created a Joint Cyber Lab with Italy.

Sixty-five of the Principle Investigators are faculty of leading research institutions that teamed up with Tel Aviv University scientists.

These collaborations have shaped policy in multiple areas of the cyber security industry, including:

  • bulk internet traffic hijacking
  • cryptocurrency manipulation and Bitcoin regulation
  • national security strategy
  • threat information sharing between competitors

Blavatnik ICRC organizes and hosts Cyber Week, a weeklong series of lectures, hands-on workshops, and communal events. Cyber Week takes place on the campus of Tel Aviv University and works with the National Cyber Directorate, Prime Minister Office, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The annual event routinely draws lecturers and participants from more than 80 countries.

Blavatnik ICRC rigorous research and impactful outreach attract external research funding and continue to bolster Tel Aviv University’s recognition as one of the world’s leading cyber research centers.

Prof. Isaac Ben Israel

Prof. Isaac Ben-Israel studied mathematics, physics, and philosophy at Tel Aviv University, where he earned his Ph.D. in 1988.  During his service in the Israeli army, Ben-Israel held multiple posts in operations, intelligence, and weapon development units of the Israeli Air Force. He was also the head of military R&D of the Israel Defense Forces and the Ministry of Defense.

In 2002 Prof. Ben Israel joined the academic staff of Tel-Aviv University, where he is the Head of Security Studies Program, Deputy Director of the Hartog School of Government and Policy, Head of the Interdisciplinary Cyber Studies Center (ICRC), and the Head of Yuval Ne’eman Workshop for Science, Technology, and Security, at Tel-Aviv University.

Prof. Avishai Wool

Prof. Avishai Wool received his B.Sc. in Mathematics and Computer Science with honors from Tel Aviv University (1989). He also has a M.Sc. (1992) and a Ph.D. (1997), both in Computer Science from the Weizmann Institute of Science. He is currently a professor in the School of Electrical Engineering at Tel Aviv University, the director of the Cryptography and Network Security Lab. His research focuses on firewall technology, computer, network, and wireless security, smart-card and RFID systems, and sidechannel cryptanalysis.

Before joining the staff at Tel Aviv University, he co-founded AlgoSec Systems, a network security company, for which he continues to serve as Chief Technical Officer. He has served on the program committee of the leading IEEE and ACM conferences on computer and network security.  He is a senior member of IEEE, and a member of the ACM and USENIX.