Prof. Ben Israel Isaac

Isaac Ben-Israel was born in Israel (Tel-Aviv), 1949.

He studied Mathematics, Physics and Philosophy at Tel-Aviv University, receiving his Ph.D. in 1988.

He joined the Israel Air Force (IAF) after graduating high school (1967) and has served continuously up to his retirement (2002).

During his service, Isaac Ben-Israel has held several posts in operations, intelligence and weapon development units of the IAF. He headed the IAF Operations Research Branch, Analysis and Assessment Division of IAF Intelligence, and was the Head of Military R&D of Israel Defence Forces and Ministry of Defence (1991-1997). In January 1998 he was promoted to Major General and appointed as Director of Defence R&D Directorate in IMOD. During his service he received twice the Israeli Defence Award.

After retirement from the IDF Isaac Ben Israel joined the University of Tel-Aviv (TAU) as a professor.

In 2003 he founded RAY-TOP (Technology Opportunities) Ltd, consulting governments and industries in technological and strategic issues.

At TAU he was the Deputy Director of the Hartog School of Government and Policy (2005-2015), head of Curiel Centre for International Studies (2002-2004), Executive Director of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Technological Analysis & Forecasting (ICTAF) (2010-2013), a member of Jaffe Centre for Strategic Studies (2002-2004) and head of the Program for Security Studies (2004-2018). In 2002 he founded and headed the Yuval Ne’eman Workshop for Science, Technology and Security at Tel Aviv University. In 2014 he founded and became the Director of the Blavatnik interdisciplinary Cyber Research Center at Tel-Aviv University.

He was a member of the Board of Trustees of Ariel University Centre (2009-2011), and a member of the advisory council of Neaman Institute for Advanced Studies in Science and Technology at the Technion (2000-2010).

Professor Ben-Israel was a member of the 17th Knesset (Israeli Parliament) between June 2007 and February 2009. During this period he was a member of the Security and Foreign Affairs Committee, the Finance Committee, the Science & Technology committee, the Chairman of the Homeland Security Sub Committee and the Chairman of the Israeli–Indian Parliamentary Friendship Association.

Isaac Ben Israel was a member of the board of directors of IAI (2000-2002), the board of the Israel Corp. (2004-2007), the R&D advisory board of TEVA (2003-2007), Chairman of the Technion Entrepreneurial Incubator (2007), and member of the board of Fisher Institute for Air and Space Strategic Studies (2000-2018).

In 2011 he was appointed by the Prime Minister to lead a National Task Force that formulated Israel national Cyber policy. Following that he led the foundation of National Cyber Headquarters in the PM Office.  In 2014 he was appointed again by the PM to lead another task force which resulted in a government decision (February 2015) to set up a new National Cyber Authority.

He was the Chairman of Israel National R&D council in 2010-2016, and a member of Bank of Israel committee in charge of nominating Board members of Israeli Banks (2016-2018).

In June 2018 he was appointed again by the Prime Minister to lead a National Task Force to formulate Israel national Artificial Intelligence policy, and to submit a plan to the Government that will put Israel among the top countries in the world in this field.

Professor Ben-Israel has written numerous papers on military and security issues. His book Dialogues on Science and Military Intelligence (1989) won the Itzhak-Sade Award for Military Literature. His book on The Philosophy of Military Intelligence had been published by the Broadcast University (1999) and has been translated into French (2004). His book Science, Technology and Security: From Soldiers in Combat up to Outer Space, was published in 2006. His book on Israel Defence Doctrine was published in 2013. His book on Cyber Security in Israel was published by Springer in 2015.

Isaac is married to Inbal (née Marcus) and they have three sons: Yuval (1981), Roy (1984) and Alon (1988).


Current Positions

–     Chairman of Israel Space Agency (since 2005).

–     Co-Director of the National AI Task Force (since 2018).

–     Professor Emeritus at Tel-Aviv University, teaching at the Security Studies Program (since 2002) and at the Cohen Institute for the History & Philosophy of Sciences and Ideas (since 1989).

–     Positions at Tel-Aviv University (TAU):

* Head of the Blavatnik Interdisciplinary Cyber Studies Centre (since 2014)

*  Head of the Yuval Ne’eman Workshop for Science, Technology and Security (since 2002).

–     Member of the academic council of Afeka – Tel-Aviv Academic College of Engineering (since 2003).

–   Member of the committee for Prime Minister Prize for Art, Science & Culture (since 2011)

–     Founder and CEO of RAY TOP Technologies Ltd. (since 2002).

–     Founder and CEO of RAY TOP SINGAPORE Pte. Ltd. (since 2003)

–     Partner at Cyber Security Group (CSG) (since 2016) and The Floor Cyber (since 2018).

–     Member of the Advisory Board of Red Dot Fund (since 2017).

–     Member of the Board of SpaceIL

–     Chairman of the Board of Bluechain Ventures Fund

–     Chairman of the Board of Arma Ferrea


Current Positions and Memberships abroad

–     Founder and CEO of RAY TOP Singapore Pte. Ltd. (since 2003).

–     Member of IAA – International Academy of Astronautics (since 2012).

–     Member of Singapore RIEC – Research, Innovation and Enterprise Council (since 2012).

–     Member of the Board of the Agency for Science, Technology & Research in Singapore – A*STAR (since 2010).

    Commissioner at GCSC – Global commission on the Stability of Cyberspace (since 2017).


Prizes and Awards

1972       Israel Defence Award, for developing an airborne weapon delivery system for F-4E.

1976       Israel Air Force Award, for developing a C­­­­4 system.

1984       IDF Director of military Intelligence Prize for Creative Thinking.

1990       Itzhak-Sade Award for Military Literature, for the book Dialogues on Science and Military Intelligence.

2001       Israel Defence Award (Second time), for a project introducing a new concept of future warfare.

2002       Singapore Defence Technology Distinguished Award for “outstanding contribution to bilateral defence relations between Israel and Singapore”.

2008       Lions “Man of Excellence“, for his contribution to Israel Security.