There are now about one million Haredi Israelis, and their numbers are projected to continue growing over time. They are not well integrated into the cultural and civic life of Israel, and that fact constitutes one of the great challenges facing the Jewish state in the coming decades. If Israel is to continue flourishing in the areas of economics, defense, health, and technology, it will need to incorporate this large and growing sector without undermining its unique way of life. And if Israel is to continue achieving its mission as the Jewish nation-state, then this will involve Haredi participation in the civic responsibility of nation building. The Haredi integration movement is slowly gaining traction, but like every social movement, it requires strong intellectual foundations. Given the nature of Haredi Judaism, the insights of conservative sociology, conservative public policy research, and conservative political philosophy can enrich the foundations of the Haredi integration into Israeli public life. Join the distinguished Haredi dayan, Hebrew University law school graduate, Israeli Supreme Court clerk, and editor of the Tikvah Fund’s journal of Haredi intellectual life, Tzarich Iyun, Rabbi Yehoshua Pfeffer as he describes Israel’s Haredi challenge.

Rabbi Yehoshua Pfeffer

Yehoshua Pfeffer is a rabbi and former dayan (religious judge), specializing in monetary law. He currently heads the haredi division at the Tikvah Fund in Israel, teaches at Yeshivas Chedvas HaTorah, and is Editor-in-Chief of the new Tzarich Iyun (“Needs Further Study”) online journal. Pfeffer has written numerous books and articles on different subjects of Jewish law and thought; lectures extensively for various forums in Israel and abroad; and has served as chief halachic assistant to the former Chief Rabbi of Israel and as a researcher for the Israel Law Ministry. He holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Law from Hebrew University, and clerked at the Supreme Court of Israel. He lectures at Hebrew University and at Ono Academic College.