About Adva Center

The Adva Center is a leading Israeli progressive think-and-do tank that monitors social and economic developments. Adva’s studies of Israeli society present critical analyses of public policy in the areas of budgets, taxation and social services – education, health, housing, social security and welfare and transportation – including their implications for Israeli society as a whole and for each of its major social groups.

Since its establishment in 1991, Adva has been at the forefront of the struggle to advance equality, social justice and gender-responsive programming in Israel. We at Adva believe all Israelis – Jews and Arabs, women and men, high and low income persons – deserve high-quality public education, low-cost public health services, decent affordable housing, and a robust social security system. We also believe that an active citizenry is crucial to democracy.

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What do we do?

  • Analyzing public policy on fiscal matters, education, health, housing, and social security.
  • Proposing policy alternatives with the goal of improving the social and economic situation of all Israelis.
  • Engaging and advising decision makers on public policy matters.
  • Publishing regular reports on gender and ethnic equality, income and pay gaps, poverty and wealth, and the divide between Israel’s Start-Up Nation and its periphery.
  • Stimulating public debate through testimony at Knesset committees and other public forums, and through frequent appearances in all mass media.
  • Providing training to government agencies and civil society organizations.
  • Getting citizens involved, especially at the local level. Developing leadership, particularly among women from disadvantaged communities.
  • Disseminating information in both mainstream and social media, reaching over 100,000 people each month.
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Staff Members
Board of Directors

Dr. Yuval Livnat, Executive Director

Dr. Yuval Livnat is the Executive Director of Adva Center. He holds an SJD degree (Doctor of the Science of Law) from Columbia Law School.

Barbara Swirski, Community Relations

Barbara Swirski, the founder and first executive director of Adva. Today she is the director of Community Relations. Barbara is a sociologist and social entrepreneur: she was among the founders of the first shelter for battered women in Israel, in Haifa in 1977, and among the founders of the Adva Center, in 1991.

Dr. Shlomo Swirski, Academic Director

Dr. Shlomo Swirski is a sociologist who serves as the academic director of the Adva Center. In the past he lectured at the universities of Tel Aviv and Haifa, was a partner in the founding of academic and social enterprises, among them the academic journal Notebooks of Research and Social Critique, HILA for Quality Education, and the Kedma Schools.

Dr. Yael Hasson, Head of Gender Research

Dr. Yael Hasson is the head of Gender Research in Adva. Holds a Doctoral degree in Sociology from Haifa University on gender and economic policy.

Etty Konor-Attias, Research Coordinator

Etty Konor-Attias is research coordinator and lecturer at the Adva Center, and is co-author of annual reports: Looking at the National Budget, Israel: A Social Report, Workers and Employers in Israel and the Distribution of the National Income. She has an MA in Public Policy from Tel Aviv University.

Atty. Noga Dagan Buzaglo, Researcher

Attorney Noga Dagan Buzaglo is a researcher and lecturer at the Adva Center, specializing in education, labor and labor law and social security. She holds an MA in Sociology from the Hebrew University and an LLB from Tel Aviv University.

Dr. Valeria Seigelshifer, Coordinator of Gender Equality Projects

Dr. Valeria Seigelshifer serves as Coordinator of Gender Equality Projects and as a lecturer at Adva Center. She holds a Ph.D. on Gender Studies from Bar Ilan University and engages in advocacy work at the Knesset and at government ministries, with a focus on gender mainstreaming programming and budgeting.

Yaron Hoffmann-Dishon, Researcher

Yaron Hoffmann-Dishon is a researcher and New Media coordinator at the Adva Center . Holds an MA in Sociology from Ben-Gurion University.

Mira Oppenheim, Office Manager / Media Relations

Mira Oppenheim is the office manager and is responsible for media relations. She worked in the field of communications as a reporter, and as a research assistant and deputy editor of films, series and documentary projects.

Uriya Yakut Zini, Outreach and Community Action Coordinator

Uriya Yakut Zini is the outreach coordinator and community action worker at Adva. Uriya is a graduate student in the department of Philosophy of Education at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

Aviv Lieberman, Researcher

Aviv Lieberman is a researcher at the Adva Center. Holds BA and MA in Sociology-Anthropology and Management, both from Tel Aviv University. Specializes in quantitative research with emphasis on stratification and inequality. Currently studies for a PhD in sociology at Tel Aviv University.

Lital Biton, Creative and Graphic Artist

Lital Biton, Creative and Graphic Artist at the Adva Center. Holds a BA in Art.  Studying for a Master's degree at the Cohen Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Ideas at Tel Aviv University.

Prof. Yossi Dahan, Chair of the Board of Directors of Adva

Professor at the Academic Center of Law & Business and head of  the Human Rights Clinic.  Among the founders of the Adva Center, co-founder and editor of the Haokets website and lecturer of philosophy at the Open University. Areas of expertise: labor law, workers' rights and global justice, theories of social justice, the right to education and social justice in the field of education.

Ms. Gilberte Finkel, Treasurer of the Board of Directors at Adva Center

Veteran feminist activist (member of the Tzena U'rena collective in the 1980s).  Wrote the first study of the new feminist movement in Israel in 1981, for the MA degree in English-Women's Studies at  the University of Paris VII. Contributed articles about women in Israel to various journals. Holds a teaching degree from Tel Aviv University. Consultant on tourism after dozens of years of experience in administrative positions in the tourism sector.

Prof. Ismael Abu-Saad

Professor of Educational Policy and Administration in the Department of Education, founding director of the Center for Bedouin Studies and Development, and holder of the Abraham Cutler Chair in Education at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beer-Sheba. Received Outstanding Achievement Award from the University of Minnesota in 2004.  Research interests include educational policy and development among indigenous peoples, Palestinian Arab education and higher education, social identity in heterogeneous societies, the impact of urbanization on the Negev Bedouin Arabs and organizational behavior in multicultural contexts.

Prof. Nitza Berkovitch

Head of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Ben Gurion University of the Negev. Lectures and writes on globalization, gender, supra-national women's movements, human rights and civil society. Her present projects explore the complex relationships between feminism and neo-liberalism as reflected in civil society organizations and care work in the family.

Prof. Oren Iftachel

Professor of Urban Studies and Political Geography at Ben-Gurion University, Beer Sheba. His research has focused on critical understandings of the relations between space, power, inequality and conflict. Yiftachel is also a social activist who is a member of several organizations working for social justice, equality and peace.

Prof. Shoshana Madmoni-Gerber

Associate Professor of Communication and Journalism at Suffolk University in Boston; research interests include the media’s role in shaping the sphere of public discourse, media criticism, media coverage of social and political conflicts, and representation of minorities in the media.

Advocate Ola Shtiwee

Self-employed attorney, holder of MA degree in International Human Rights Law. Areas of interest: social and economic rights. Expertise in labor rights, social security and family law. Worked in the organizations Kayan: Palestinian Feminist Organization, Adva Center and Physicians for Human Rights.

Prof. Dani Filc

Professor in the department of Politics and Government at Ben Gurion University in the Negev. Research interests include health policy, the right to health, inequality in health and accessibility to health services, and privatization of the health system. Additional research areas: the connection between neoliberalism, the crisis of representation, the limitations of liberal democracy and the growth of populist movements. Board member of Physicians for Human Rights.

Prof. Rivka Savaiya

Professor of Social Work at the Bob Shapell School of Social Work at Tel Aviv University. Areas of research and instruction include (1) clinical and administrative information systems in human resources services – uses and influences, (2) evaluation of processes, results, impacts and sustainability of social programs, (3) minority groups and at risk populations, (4) critical examination of practices and experiences of social workers, (5) social work and social justice.

Prof. Hubert Law-Yone

Professor Emeritus at the Faculty of Architecture and City Planning at the Technion, engaged in research and guidance of students working for advanced degrees, served in administrative capacities and as a member of professional and public committees. Took part in the preparation of regional and national master plans and in the promotion of formal recognition of "unrecognized" Bedouin villages in Israel. Retired from the Technion as Associate Professor and continues student guidance, publication, and activity in public frameworks, with the emphasis on the social aspect of public policy and political economy in Israel.

Prof. Rachel Kallus

Architect and city planner, graduate of MIT (MAarch) and the Technion (Ph.D.), member of the Faculty of Architecture and City Planning and head of the Technion Social Hub. Her research, based on critical theory in the social sciences, cultural and gender studies, intermediates between different practices of the creation of space and examines the mutual relations between policy (planning) and physical design (architecture) and that between daily life, in order to enrich the toolbox of the planner in a way that combines professional knowledge, local knowledge and knowledge of place. She has worked on housing projects in the United States, Holland and Israel, engaging primarily in urban design and neighborhood planning. Her professional work is primarily with community and civil society organizations and aims at strengthening community involvement in planning.

Prof. Uri Ram

Professor of Sociology at the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Ben Gurion University of the Negev. Former Department Chair and the President of the Israeli Sociological Association (2016-2018). He is a major contributor to the renewal of critical sociology in Israel, to the analysis of post- and neo-Zionist trends in Israeli political culture, and to global studies of Israel.

Ms. Ruti Gur, Audit Committee

Graduate of Senior Business Administration program at Haifa University. Mizrahi feminist activist. Active during the past 40 years in feminist and social change organizations. Co-founder of the following feminist and social change organizations: Yated Community Organizing in Development Towns and Disadvantaged Neighborhoods, Emergency Shelter for Battered Women, Women's Coalition for Peace, Ahoti, Isha L'Isha – Haifa Feminist Center, Violence Against Women Hotline, and Women's Economic Empowerment.