Ben Gurion University of the Negev

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אוּנִיבֶרְסִיטַת בֶּן-גּוּרִיּוֹן בַּנֶּגֶב
Ben Gurion University of the Negev
founding 1969
Sponsorship state
place Be'er Scheva , Sede Boker and Eilat , Israel
president Daniel Chamovitz
Students 20,000 (2020)

The Ben Gurion University of the Negev ( Hebrew אוּנִיבֶרְסִיטַת בֶּן-גּוּרִיּוֹן בַּנֶּגֶב Ūnīversīṭat Ben-Gūrijjōn ba-Negev , German 'Ben-Gurion University in the Negev' , Arabic جامعة بن غوريون, English Ben-Gurion University of the Negev ; in short: BGU ) is an academic institution in southern Israel , the main location of which is in Beersheba .

History of the university

The foundation was based on the vision of the first Prime Minister of Israel, David Ben-Gurion , to colonize and green the largest land reserve in Israel, the Negev desert . Closely linked to this vision was the possibility of higher education in the Negev by means of a university, which at the same time was supposed to be the focal point for the economic development of the desert, in which large natural resources were assumed.

The first steps towards founding a university were taken in 1962 when the then mayor of Beersheba, David Tuwijahu , and professor Ernst David Bergmann proposed the establishment of a higher education institution. In that year academic lectures began, given by lecturers from the Weizmann Institute of Science and the Technion . From 1963 the institution was called the Negev Institute for Higher Education .

In 1969 the institute was declared a university by a government decision and named Negev University . After the death of Ben-Gurion (1973) the university got his name.

The university faced great difficulties like no other in Israel, mainly due to its relative isolation from the center of the country. Even so, the university has been developing steadily and is very popular among Israeli students. The university has experienced the greatest development spurt that continues to this day since the early 1990s. At the beginning of the 1990s around 6,000 students were enrolled, in 2005 the number was already 17,500, and in 2020 it was 20,000.

Within a relatively short period of time, the university was able to achieve the reputation of an internationally outstanding research center. At the same time, the university is the most popular among Israeli students (according to surveys and according to the applicant / admission ratio) and is known for having the best student life in Israel. The university has also built a reputation for social responsibility and actively promotes volunteering among students. More than a third of the students are involved in such projects, which are supposed to create a bridge between the academic ivory tower and the social problems of disadvantaged sections of the population. The university also plays a key role in consolidating the Bedouin population of the northern Negev, which is in the transition from semi-nomadism to sedentarism.

List of presidents of the university

Academic units

  • Medical school
  • Faculty of Science
  • Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Engineering faculty
  • Management school
  • National Institute of Biotechnology
  • Blaustein Institute for Desert Research
  • Institute for Applied Sciences
  • Ben Gurion Research Institute
  • Center for International Student Programs


Zuker Goldstein Goran Building

The Ben Gurion University of the Negev is spread over six locations:

In Beer Sheva:

  • Main campus, named after the Markus family (the Markus Family Campus)
  • The medical faculty at Soroka Hospital (located directly on the main campus)
  • Bergmann Campus for Applied Sciences
  • Tuviahu campus in the city center. This is the old campus and houses a teachers' college.


  • Blaustein Institute for Desert Research, which also houses the National Solar Research Center and the Ben-Gurion Research Institute and is the location of the grave of David Ben-Gurion; in the Ben-Gurion Academy (Midreschet Ben-Gurion), two kilometers south of Kibbutz Sede Boker .
  • Eilat Campus : a branch of the university founded in 2003 to enable academic studies in Eilat on the Red Sea .

In addition, Achva College at Kirjat Malachi , Sapir Academic College at Sderot and Arava College at Ketura are under partial academic supervision by the university.

International study programs

In addition to the regular study programs, several special study programs are offered that are aimed at an international student audience:

  • an English-language master's program in Middle East Studies (Master of Arts in Middle East Studies; MAPMES)
  • an English-language medical degree in cooperation with Columbia University specializing in international health issues
  • Special courses in the international center for desert studies
  • The Ginsburg Ingerman Overseas Student Program (OSP) offers one- or two-semester courses that specialize in the study of Hebrew and academic lectures and excursions related to Israel / Judaism / Middle East. An international summer university is also run by the center (in English).
  • The Center for International Student Programs (ZIS, the name is in German) is a sub-unit of the Ginsburg Ingerman Overseas Student Program (OSP) and has been organizing a German-language summer university since 1998 . This six-week program includes an intensive Hebrew course at all levels (Hebrew Ulpan ), academic lectures in German and academic excursions in German. The German-speaking Summer University is the only academic program in Israel that is specially tailored for the German-speaking audience.
  • The excavations around Qubur al-Walayida are being carried out with the German universities of Rostock and Leipzig .

Personalities associated with the university


Web links

Commons : Ben-Gurion University of the Negev  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  2. [1]
  3. [2]
  4. ^ David Macfarlane: New pressure on UJ to sever Israel ties , Mail & Guardian , September 24, 2010;
    Asaf Shtull wedding ring: South African School Cuts Ties With Ben-Gurion University , Haaretz, March 25, 2011; South African university cuts ties with Israel's BGU , Ma'an News Agency , March 27, 2011;
    University of Johannesburg Petition (petition website);
    Findings on Ben-Gurion University of the Negev: Institutional complicity and active collaboration with Israeli military, occupation and apartheid practices , AURDIP , March 15, 2011.
  5. ^ British Scientists Boycott Israeli Institutions , n-tv , October 27, 2015;
    Peter Walker, Ian Black: UK academics boycott universities in Israel to fight for Palestinians' rights , The Guardian , October 27, 2015;
    A Commitment by UK Scholars to Human Rights in Palestine , (website of the boycott call);

Coordinates: 31 ° 15 ′ 41.8 ″  N , 34 ° 48 ′ 4.3 ″  E