About the IAPL:
The Israeli Association of Public Law (IAPL) was established in 1988 by Prof. Itzhak Zamir, its first chairperson, was a professor of public law at Hebrew University of Jerusalem, former attorney general of Israel and former Supreme Court justice. The association’s first president was the leading constitutional scholar, the late Prof. Itzhak Hans Klinghofer. Prof. Shimon Shetreet, who held several government ministries, was its first secretary. These well-esteemed early leaders were followed by long line of eminent jurists and scholars, including Justice (ret.) Dalia Dorner, Justice (ret.) Eliahu Mazza, Prof. Claude Klein, Prof.Barak Medina, Prof. Daphne Barak-Erez, Prof. Ariel Bendor and Prof. Yoram Rabin Currently, the IAPL is led by its President, Dorit Beinisch, former President and Justice of the Supreme Court of Israel. Prof. Suzie Navot serves as Chairperson and Dr. Yaniv Roznai as Secretary. The association is a registered nonprofit organization and all posts are held on a voluntary basis.
The IAPL aims to promote public law – both constitutional and administrative – in Israel and to protect its core principles and values. Established in 1988 as a registered nonprofit organization, the IAPL is currently the only organization in Israel that focuses on addressing vital issues of public law.
As a young democracy, Israel calls upon its judicial system to deal with an exceptionally wide range of complex and controversial issues. These include the constitutional rights of minorities; the intricacies of emergency laws and wartime conduct; unique citizenship regulations; the complicated relations between religion and state; and the special role of the Israeli Supreme Court in the constitutional discourse.
The IAPL actively seeks to broaden and deepen the public and academic discourse on these critical issues and a host of others. The association’s flagship program, its annual conference, brings together leading practitioners and scholars of Israeli law to examine and discuss timely topics involving public law. For example, in 2011, one of the main panels focused on the constitutional meaning and implications of the Jewish State; and in 2013, panels were dedicated to the national duty to serve in the military, as well as to issues related to immigration and family reunification.
Close to 200 people attend the conference each year – to listen, learn, explore and share their thoughts on these crucial topics and others, engaging in substantive debate that is often picked up by the media.
In addition to the conference, the IAPL supports publication of research related to public law. And to better promote its aims, the association cooperates with various organizations and leading figures, both in Israel and internationally – most notably, it serves as the Israeli branch of the International Association of Constitutional Law.
In these ways, the IAPL fills an essential role in Israel’s deeply polarized society, whose democratic institutions, including the judicial system, are increasingly at risk of being eroded by political and religious pressure groups. Key democratic principles such as freedom of speech, pluralism and equality of rights for all of Israel’s citizens have come under sustained fire.
In light of these circumstances, we at the IAPL believes that the time has come to significantly expand our activities and our membership, to delve further into the realms of comparative and international public law, and to strengthen the link between academia and the practice of public law.
Among our fresh initiatives is a new website that will boost our online presence and widen our appeal to younger scholars and practitioners of public law, those who will form the backbone of our newly established young leadership forum. The association will issue periodic bulletins, summarizing new scholarship and developments in the field, and encourage lively online debate on these topics. We will also organize workshops where younger scholars can present their work to established academics in a friendly and productive professional environment.
Finally, we plan to publish the papers presented at the annual conference, both digitally and in print, in order to disseminate the new scholarship as widely as possible and further enrich the public discourse.
Address:The Striks School of Law, The College of Management Academic Studies, 7 Yitzhak Rabin Blvd., PO Box 25072, Rishon LeZion 75190, Israel