Tata Industries will invest $5 million in a new Tel Aviv University (TAU) technology fund, saying it saw the university as its Israeli research and development center.
Tata, part of Indian conglomerate Tata Group, will be the lead investor in a planned $20 million fund at TAU’s technology transfer company Ramot aimed at commercializing their research.
“For Tata, we … see innovation and R&D as an area of focus and a source of competitive advantage going forward,” Rameshwar Jamwal, executive director at Tata Industries, told reporters last week.
Jamwal said it was Tata’s first major investment in Israel and that it would likely invest further.
“This is our attempt to scout Israeli technology more deeply,” he said. “This allows us over a period of time to show our commitment to Israel but we are interested in doing more.”
Tata will work with TAU’s scientists to help steer them towards applying commercial uses for their research.
“It’s someone to test your ideas and say what’s a mistake,” said Shlomo Nimrodi, Ramot’s chief executive. “Tata knows the market better.”
He noted that TAU invests $150 million a year in R&D. Among Ramot’s big successes is flash memory, which was licensed by an Israeli company before it was sold to Sandisk, which still pays millions of dollars of royalties to the university.
Nimrodi said the new fund will invest in healthcare, pharmaceuticals, cleantech, food security, the environment, engineering and software.
He noted that in some cases, Tata will get the right of first opportunity in a particular research project.
Many large global companies have R&D facilities in Israel, including Intel, Microsoft, IBM, Google, HP and Yahoo.
Two Israeli startup companies have signed promising cooperation agreements with Google and LinkedIn.
The first company, Graduway, has developed an internal social network for universities, which derives information from Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. The alumni network allows the institution’s graduates to keep in touch.
The company has signed a strategic agreement with LinkedIn, the professional social networking website which is valued at more than $18 billion and has some 200 million members.
As part of the agreement, Graduway users will be able to connect to LinkedIn and used the website to find a job and meet business partners.
Google has announced a partnership with Israeli company Gigya, which provides a “social infrastructure” for websites of major businesses, embedding elements related to social networks.
Some 1.5 billion people use Gigya’s tools, and the company’s customers include the Walmart and Adidas websites. Now Gigya will integrate elements from Google+ as well.
While Israel has been making headlines for the regular flow of “A List” musicians to perform in the Jewish state recently, a rock star of another kind is expected to land at Ben-Gurion Airport this June.
British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking will be in Israel this summer to participate in the fifth President’s Conference, “Facing Tomorrow.”
The wheelchair-bound Hawking, who has had Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) – also referred to Lou Gehrig’s disease – for decades, will be making his first sojourn to Israel since his 2006 visit, when he was invited by the British Embassy to tour and meet with local scientists.
Full story via Ynet
An Israeli theater project that brings Holocaust survivors and Jewish high school students together on stage will have its American debut on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day with local Shoah survivors and students from New York.
The Israeli Witness Theater project was brought to the United States for the first time by the UJA- Federation of New York, which sponsors the project in Israel together with JDC- Eshel. The program works in conjunction with Selfhelp Community Services.
As part of the program, Holocaust survivors from around New York have been working on the show with Jewish students, ages 17 and 18, from the Yeshiva of Flatbush, Joel Braverman High School in Brooklyn over the course of the past year.
The first show will be taking place on Sunday, the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day in Israel.
The Witness Theater Program is an innovative and emotional intergenerational “journey” for Holocaust survivors and high school students. Working together, the two generations elicit and expose the moving stories of survival and explore issues of war, loss and trauma.
The survivors are the narrators, and students work with them to draw out their stories and to enact their wartime experiences.
The concept for the program was developed by the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee’s division for the elderly in Israel (JDC-Eshel), supported by UJA-Federation of New York, and is currently operating in many cities across Israel.
Selfhelp Community Services, Inc. (Selfhelp), the largest provider of services to Nazi victims in North America, is implementing this powerful and moving program in the United States.
Selfhelp is working in partnership with the Yeshiva of Flatbush Joel Braverman High School. Thirteen students and ten Holocaust survivors are participating this year. The students were recruited from the senior class at Yeshiva of Flatbush and the Holocaust survivors are connected with Selfhelp’s Brooklyn programs.
The Yeshiva of Flatbush’s partnership with Selfhelp and Witness Theater is an outgrowth of its well established commitment to Holocaust Studies that is integrated into the yeshiva’s curriculum at every grade level.
Beginning in September 2012, students and survivors have been meeting weekly over the course of the academic year with a trained drama therapist, theater director and social worker. The project will culminate in the production of staged performances, with the student actors portraying the personal stories of the survivors in their group.
These moving accounts highlight the memories, pain and survival of the Holocaust through the eyes, ears and speech of youth. The program aims to involve Holocaust survivors in a therapeutic process designed to help them come to terms with their past, and to instill the memory of the Holocaust in the next generation. The performances serve as a vehicle for the survivors’ testimony to be heard by many and to witness the special connections made between the generations.
There will be two performances of Witness Theater: On Sunday at 7 pm, and on Monday, Holocaust Remembrance Day, at 10 am. The performances will be held at the Yeshiva of Flatbush Joel Braverman High School in Brooklyn.
Selfhelp plans to continue this project for a second year in New York, beginning in fall 2013.
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