Technion – Israel Institute of Technology

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The Technion – Israel Institute of Technology (Hebrew: הטכניון – מכון טכנולוגי לישראל‎) is a public research university in Haifa, Israel. Founded in 1912, Technion is the oldest university in Israel. The university offers degrees in science and engineering, and related fields such as architecture, medicine, industrial management and education. It has 18 academic departments and 52 research centers. Since its founding, it has awarded 95,821 degrees and its graduates are cited for providing the skills and education behind the creation and protection of the State of Israel.[1][2]

The university’s principal language of instruction is Hebrew. Technion was the scene of a critical struggle over the language of instruction which helped consolidate Hebrew as the spoken language in the State of Israel.[3]

Technion’s 616 faculty members currently include three Nobel Laureates in chemistry.

The current president of the Technion is Prof. Peretz Lavie, who was ranked in 2012 by the Israeli national newspaper The Marker as among the country’s 100 most influential people.[4]

The Technion is increasingly becoming a global example of how investment in higher education can impact the destiny of a young nation, becoming known as Israel’s Silicon Valley.[5][6]


Albert Einstein at Technion; ca. 1925

The Technion was conceived in the early 1900s by the German-Jewish fund Ezrah as a school of engineering and sciences. It was to be the only institution of higher learning in the then Ottoman Palestine, other than the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem (founded in 1907). Its cornerstone was laid in 1912, and studies began 12 years later in 1924. The Technion witnessed Israel’s « battle of the languages »: an intense debate over the language of instruction.

In 1923 Albert Einstein visited and planted the now-famous first palm tree, as an initiative of Nobel tradition. The first palm tree still stands today in front of the old Technion building in Hadar. Einstein founded the first Technion Society, and served as its president upon his return to Germany.

In 1925 British industrialist Alfred Mond, 1st Baron Melchett became the Technion’s first president.


Aerospace Faculty (Technion)

Civil and Environmental Engineering Faculty Technion

View towards the Electrical and Electronics Engineering Building from Obelisk

Computer Science Faculty Building

Faculty of Industrial Engineering & Management

Faculty of Mathematics

Erdős–Faber–Lovász conjecture

Technion Faculty of Medicine

Technion City generally refers to the 1.2 square kilometer site located on the pine-covered north-eastern slopes of Mount Carmel. The campus comprises 100 buildings, occupied by thousands of people every day.

The Technion has two additional campuses. Its original building in midtown Haifa, in use by the Technion until the mid-1980s, now houses the Israel National Museum of Science, Technology and Space. The Rappaport Faculty of Medicine is located in the neighborhood of Bat Galim, adjacent to Rambam Hospital, the largest medical center in Northern Israel.

Recreational activities on the main campus include an olympic-size swimming pool as well as gymnastics, squash and tennis facilities.[7] The Technion Symphony Orchestra and Choir are composed mainly of Technion students and staff. Each term, the Orchestra offers a series of daytime and evening concerts. Films and live performances by leading Israeli artists take place on campus on a regular basis.

Cornell NYC Tech

Main article: Cornell NYC Tech

On December 19, 2011, a bid by a consortium of Cornell University and Technion won a competition to establish a new high-tier applied science and engineering institution in New York City. The competition was established by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg in order to increase entrepreneurship and job growth in the city’s technology sector. The winning bid consisted of a 2.1 million square feet state-of-the-art tech campus being built on Roosevelt Island, which will have its first phase completed by 2017, with a temporary off-site campus opening in 2013 at the Google New York City headquarters building at 111 Eighth Avenue.[8][9] The new ‘School of Genius’ in New York City has been named the Technion Cornell Institute of Innovation (TCII).[10] This is the first time any Israeli university has moved into establishing a center of global advanced research in the United States.



Aerospace Engineering

Founded in 1950, the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering conducts research and education in a wide range of aerospace disciplines. The Aerospace Research Center also consists of the Aerodynamics (wind tunnels) Laboratory, the Aerospace Structures Laboratory, the Combustion and Rocket Propulsion Laboratory, the Turbo and Jet Engine Laboratory, the Flight Control Laboratory and the Design for Manufacturing Laboratory.

Architecture and Town Planning

The Technion Faculty of Architecture awards B.Arch degrees awarded after five years of study.[11] Its graduate program in architecture accepts about 15 students each year, and it accepts about 4–5 doctoral students, focusing on subjects such as architectural theory and philosophy, bio-climate and energy conscious design, morphology, computer application, person-environment relations, housing, architectural history, and urban design.[11]


The Faculty of Biology was established in 1971. Advanced research is carried out in 23 research groups, focusing on a variety of aspects of cellular, molecular and developmental biology. The faculty has extensive collaborations with the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. The Faculty has around 350 undegraduate students and over 100 graduate students.[12]

Biomedical Engineering

Established in 1968, the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering has a multidiciplinary scope nurturing research activities that blend medical and biological engineering. Research projects have resulted in the development of patented medical aids. Recent research breakthroughs include the identification of a structured neurological code for syllables and could let paraplegics “speak” virtually through the connection of the brain to a computer.[13]

Biotechnology & Food Engineering

Unique in Israel, the Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Engineering offers a blend of courses in engineering, life and natural sciences as well as joint degree programs with the Faculties of Biology and Chemistry. The Faculty houses biotechnology laboratories, as well as a large food processing pilot plant and a packaging laboratory. It currently has 260 undergraduates and 66 graduate students.

Civil & Environmental Engineering

In 2002, two of the original Technion Faculties – Civil and Agricultural engineering, were merged to create the Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering. It’s state vision is to « maintain and enhance the leading position of the Faculty of Civil & Environmental Engineering amongst the top departments in the world… and to position the Faculty as the national center for research & development and human resources for the sustainable development. »[14] The Faculty is the home of Technion’s expanding International School of Engineering.

Chemical Engineering

The Wolfson Faculty of Chemical Engineering is Israels oldest and largest faculty in the field, educating the vast majority of chemical engineers in Israel’s chemical industries.[12] Research activities include materials, complex fluids, processing, transport and surface phenomena and process control.


The Schulich Faculty of Chemistry offers a variety of joint programs, including with materials engineering, chemical engineering, physics, and food engineering. It also offers a joint degree with the Faculty of Biology leading to a degree in molecular biochemistry. Around 100 research projects at the faculty are sponsored by industry and national and international foundations. It also offers a variety of outreach and youth programs.[15]

Computer Science

Founded in 1969, this is one of the largest Technion faculties, with over 1,000 undergraduate students and 210 graduate students. The Faculty of Computer Science was ranked 15th among 500 universities in computer sciences for 2011 and 18th of 500 in 2012.[16] The Faculty is located in the Taub Family Science and Technology Center, following the support of the philanthropist Henry Taub.

Education in Technology & Science

Founded in 1965, the Department of Education in Technology & Science trains undergraduates in the most advanced methods of teaching science and technology in schools. The faculty is home to a research and development center in the field. It has over 350 undergraduate students and 100 graduate students.

Electrical Engineering

The Faculty of Electrical Engineering claims to be the major source of engineers who lead the development of advanced Israeli technology in the fields of electronics, computers and communications. Some 2000 undergraduate students study in the department for a B.Sc. degree in electrical engineering / computer engineering / computer and software engineering, and 400 graduate students study for the higher degrees of M.Sc. and Ph.D. The department has extensive relations with industry as well as academic and industrial special liaison support programs.[17]

Humanities and Arts

The Department of Humanities and Arts serves all the Technion community, offering courses taught by renowned visiting and adjunct scholars including philosophy of science, social and political sciences, linguistics, psychology, law and anthropology and a broad array of theoretical and performing arts courses. Elective studies in these fields can account for 10 credit points for students.

Industrial Engineering & Management

The The William Davidson Faculty of Industrial Engineering & Management at the Technion (IE&M) is the oldest such department in Israel. IE&M was launched as a Technion academic Department in 1958. The Department grew under the leadership of Pinchas Naor, who served as its founding Dean. Naor’s vision was to combine Industrial engineering with Management by creating a large, inherently multidisciplinary unit covering a wide spectrum of activities such as applied engineering, mathematical modeling, economics, behavioral sciences, operations research, and statistics.[18]

Materials Science and Engineering

Home to Nobel Laureate in Chemistry Distinguished Prof. Dan Shechtman, the Faculty of Materials Engineering is Israel’s major study center in materials science. The Faculty houses the Electron Microscopy Center, the X-Ray Diffraction Laboratory, the Atomic force microscopy Laboratory and the Physical and Mechanical Measurements lab.


The Faculty of Mathematics houses both pure and applied mathematics, and was home to the mathematician Paul Erdos. Founded in 1950, it has around 46 faculty members, 200 undergraduate students and 100 graduate students. It provides instruction for students in all other Technion faculties and organizes mathematics competition for gifted high school students and a summer camp in number theory.

Mechanical Engineering

Founded with in 1948 in the same year as the State of Israel, the Technion Faculty of Mechanical Engineering has over 830 students and 215 graduate students. Research is conducted in the faculty’s 36 laboratories across the whole spectrum of mechanical engineering, from nano-scale fields through to applied engineering of national projects.[19]


The Ruth and Bruce Rappaport Faculty of Medicine is home to two Nobel Laureates: Prof. Avram Hershko and Prof. Aaron Ciechanover. It is one of four state-sponsored medical schools in Israel. It was founded in 1979 through the philanthropy of Bruce Rappaport and is active in basic science research and pre-clinical medical training in anatomy, biochemistry, biophysics, immunology, microbiology, physiology, and pharmacology.[20] Other facilities on the Faculty of Medicine campus include teaching laboratories, a medical library, lecture halls, and seminar rooms. Academic programs are offered at the Rappaport Faculty of Medicine leading to Master of Science (M.S.), Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), and Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degrees. It has developed collaborative research and medical education programs with various institutions in medicine and bio-medical engineering including Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, University of Toronto, and Mayo Medical School. The Bruce and Ruth Rappaport Faculty of Medicine offers medical training leading to a M.D. degree to qualified American and Canadian graduates of pre-med programs under the Technion American Medical Students Program (TeAMs).[21]


The Faculty of Physics engages in experimental and theoretical research in the fields of astrophysics, high energy physics, solid state physics and biophysics. Founded in 1960, it includes the Einstein Institute of Physics, the Lidow Physics Complex, The Rosen Solid State Building and the Werksman Physics Building.

Multidisciplinary Centers

Nanotechnology & Science

The Russell Berrie Nanotechnology Institute (RBNI) was established in January 2005 as a joint endeavour of the Russell Berrie Foundation, the government of Israel, and the Technion. It is one of the largest academic programs in Israel, and is among the largest nanotechnology centers in Europe and the US. RBNI has over 110 faculty members, and approximately 300 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows under its auspices at Technion. Its multidisciplinary activities span 14 different faculties.

Energy Research

The GTEP Nancy and Stephen Grand Technion Energy Program is a multidisciplinary center of excellence bringing together Technion’s top researchers in energy science and technology from over nine different faculties.[22] Founded in 2007, GTEP’s 4-point strategy targets research and development of alternative fuels; renewable energy sources; energy storage and conversion; and energy conservation. The GTEP is presently the only center in Israel offering graduate studies in energy science and technology.

Space Research

The Normal and Helen Asher Space Research Institute (ASRI) is a specialized institute dedicated to multidisciplinary scientific research. Established in 1984, its members come from five Technion faculties, and it has a technical staff of Technion scientists in a variety of space-related fields: (Physics, Aerospace Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Autonomous Systems and Computer Sciences).

Technology Transfer

Technion Technology Transfer

Technion has an impressive track record in technology transfer. Its dedicated office to bridge the transition of scientific and technological discovery to successfully commercialized innovation has been active since 2007 as T3 – Technion Technology Transfer. As of 2011, 424 patents were granted to Technion innovations, with 845 patents pending. T3‘s partners include incubators, entrepreneurs, private investors, VCs and angel groups. It has strategic partnerships with Microsoft, IBM, Intel, Philips, Johnson & Johnson, Coca Cola, among others.

International School of Engineering

The Technion International School of Engineering (ISE) is an undergraduate program at the Technion, taught entirely in English. The ISE began its first year in 2009, and now offers a full BSc. program in Civil Engineering as well as various study abroad options, all taught in English. The students arrive from all over the globe – Asia, Africa, North and South America, Europe and Israel. The students live on campus and enjoy trips around Israel and activities throughout the year.

Outreach Programs

Technion offers many after-school and summer enrichment courses for young people on subjects ranging from introductory electronics and computer programming to aerospace, architecture, biology, chemistry and physics. Two examples are Scitech[23] and the Math Summer Camp, devoted to number theory.[24]

Technion recently set up and orchestrated the Israeli chapter of Engineers Without Borders,[25] which among other projects, installed a network of biogas systems in rural Nepal providing sustainable energy and improved sanitation.[26]


PikiWiki Israel 10615 technion ecological garden

In 2012, the Shanghai Academic Ranking rated the Technion as 78th in its list of the top 100 universities in the world.[27] Also in 2012, the magazine Business Insider ranked Technion among the top 25 engineering schools in the world.[28][29]

In 2012, the Center for World University Rankings ranked Technion 51st in the world and third in Israel in its CWUR World University Rankings.[30]

For national rankings in 2011, Technion was ranked the #2 of universities in Israel by ARWU. In global rankings for that year, Technion was ranked #102-150 by ARWU, #220 by QS,.[31]

It was ranked #201-225 by Times Higher Education World University Rankings.[32]

Research Highlights


  • Shulamit Levenberg, 37, was chosen by Scientific American magazine as one of the leading scientists in 2006 for the discovery of a method to transplant skin in a way the body does not reject.[33]
  • In 1998, Technion successfully launched the « Gurwin TechSat II » microsatellite, making Technion one of five universities with a student program that designs, builds, and launches its own satellite. The satellite stayed in orbit until 2010[34]


Dan Shechtman, who has taught at Technion since 1975, was awarded the 2011 Nobel Laureates in Chemistry for the discovery of quasicrystals.

Selected Faculty

Notable Alumni

Shai Agassi

Technion graduates have been estimated to constitute over 70 percent of the founders and managers of high-tech businesses in Israel. 68 percent of Israeli NASDAQ companies were founded and/or are led by Technion graduates, and 74 percent of managers in Israel’s electronic industries hold Technion degrees.[35] In the book, Technion Nation, Shlomo Maital, Amnon Frenkel and Ilana Debare document the contribution of Technion alumni in building the modern State of Israel.

Yossi Gross