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Israel Studies at UCLA

The Younes & Soraya Nazarian Center for Israel Studies promotes the study of modern Israel at UCLA and beyond. The center sponsors courses for UCLA students, supports research in the academic field of Israel Studies, and organizes frequent public programs, including conferences, lectures, discussions, performances, films and exhibits. We host visiting academics, and bring leading scholars, policymakers and artists to UCLA. Located in Los Angeles, which boasts the second-largest Jewish and Israeli communities in the United States, the Nazarian Center was established in 2010 as the first full-fledged Israel Studies center on the West Coast. Since then, the center has become an internationally known source of expertise and education about Israel and an intellectually vibrant home for Israel Studies at UCLA.


Israel is a small country that looms large in public and academic discourse. The passions it evokes often present obstacles to nuanced and balanced analysis. Understanding the complexities of modern Israel requires knowledge from many academic disciplines, awareness of multiple viewpoints and narratives, and a willingness to engage in dialogue and discussion. Through a commitment to academic rigor, interdisciplinary teaching and scholarship, and a balanced and dispassionate approach, the Nazarian Center seeks to promote a deeper understanding of Israel's history, politics, society, and culture.


The Nazarian Center was established with an endowment gift from the Y&S Nazarian Family Foundation. The center and Israel Studies at UCLA have also benefited greatly from the support of other donors. In particular, the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation has endowed the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation Chair in Israel Studies.

Center Director

Dov  Waxman

Dov Waxman

The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation Chair in Israel Studies