The Weizmann Institute of Science is one of the world’s leading multidisciplinary research institutions. The driving force behind the founding of the Sieff Institute and the spirit that inspired its scientific activities was Dr. Chaim Weizmann, a world-renowned chemist who headed the World Zionist Movement for many years and served as the first president of the State of Israel.
Over the years, the Weizmann Institute has grown with the country and been the source of a number of Israeli milestones. Institute scientists were pioneers in the field of cancer research in Israel. Others planned and built the country’s first electronic computer, one of the first in the world; while yet others founded the first nuclear physics department and erected a particle accelerator next door. They were the first to establish a company for transferring knowledge from academia to industry, and they initiated the founding of a science-based industrial park near the Institute. The Institute has also been home to pioneering research in the brain studies, nanotechnology and new methods for exploiting solar energy.
Institute scientists’ research has led to the development and production of Israel’s first ethical (original) drug, the development of new computer languages, the solving of three-dimensional structures of a number of biological molecules, including one that plays a key role in Alzheimer’s disease, inventions in the field of optics that have become the basis of advanced devices such as virtual head displays for pilots and surgeons, a method for separating isotopes that is used around the world, the discovery and identification of genes that are involved in various diseases, advanced techniques for transplanting embryonic tissues, and the creation of a nanobiological computer that may, in the future, be able to act directly inside the body to identify disease and stop it on the molecular level.
Each year, approximately 500 scientists from dozens of countries around the globe come to visit or work on the Weizmann Institute campus and about 25 international scientific conferences take place at the Institute.