The Director of the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, Professor Gabriel Motzkin, is an emeritus of the Hebrew University. He held the Ahad Ha’am Chair in Philosophy, and was also a member of the Departments of History and German Literature.
Gabriel Motzkin has served as the Dean of the Faculty of Humanities (2001-2004) and Director of the Franz Rosenzweig Center for German-Jewish Literature and Cultural History (1996-1999 and 2006-2007).
Motzkin has been a Fellow at the Siemens Foundation, the Max-Planck-Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Science, Clare Hall at the University of Cambridge, the Max-Planck-Institute for the History of Science, the Einstein Forum, the Wiener Institute at Tel Aviv University, the Max-Planck-Institute for History, the Wissenschaftskolleg (Berlin), and the Zentrum für interdisziplinäre Forschung (Bielefeld).
He has been a Visiting Professor and/or Visiting Scholar at the Ecole des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (Paris), the University of Giessen, the University of Amsterdam, the University of Konstanz, and the Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University.
His fields of interest are: the philosophy of history, secularization theory, cognitive science, memory theory, and Heidegger.


Gabriel Motzkin and Andzrej Richard (edited by), The Legacy of Polish Solidarity: Social Activism, Regime Collapse, and Building of a New Society, Peter Lang International Academic Publishers and the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, 2015.

Gabriel Motzkin and Yochi Fischer (edited by), Religion and democracy in contemporary Europe, The Van Leer Jerusalem Institute and Alliance, 2008.

Gabriel Motzkin and Helmut Dubiel, The Lesser Evil. Moral approaches to genocide practices, Routledge, New York, 2002.

Religion and democracy (EN)