Personal profile

About Me

Personal Biographical Information:

I am married and the father of six children. I attended a yeshiva high school and Yeshivat Mercaz HaRav Kook in Jerusalem. In my youth worked as a tour guide and in the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel. Between 1985 -1990 I was the director of the Ecological Botanical Garden at Abu Kabir on the old Tel Aviv University campus.

Research Profile

Researcher and senior lecturer in the Department of Land of Israel Studies and Archaeology. Served as head of this department 2004-2005, 2009. Director of the Unit of the History of Medicine, the Rivlin Institute for the Study of Eretz Israel and its Settlement, a joint project of Yad Ben-Zvi and  Bar-Ilan University (2002-2003). Member of the editorial board of  several scientific journals and author of many monographs and books. 

Fields of research and teaching

History of Science in Ancient Times (particularly in Jewish sources); Agriculture; Material Culture and Everyday life in the Middle Ages; the history of medicine and ethnopharmacology. Generally these are multi-disciplinary studies involving cooperation with researchers in the fields of the natural sciences, Arabic linguistics, history, and archaeology.  

Major research carried out in recent years

Documents of the  Cairo Geniza as a source of knowledge about practical medicine in the Middle East  of medieval times; study of pigments in ancient textiles and ancient paper; the Kermes oak coccid as the source of the scarlet pigment ‘tola’at shani’ , traditional herbal remedies of the Ethiopian Jews, and documentation of the kashrut traditions relating to various animals in Jewish communities around the world.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Bar-Ilan University

Jan 1992Jan 1996

Award Date: 1 Jan 1996

Master's Degree, Bar-Ilan University

Oct 1990Oct 1991

Award Date: 1 Oct 1991

Bachelor, Bar-Ilan University

Oct 1986Oct 1989

Award Date: 1 Oct 1989

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