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Political Labels and Post-Politics

A Comparative Analysis of the Party Spectrum in Israel, Hungary, and Poland

Artur Skorek


Debate over the present-day meaning of the traditional political terms ‘left’ and ‘right’ has been ongoing for at least three decades. Many claim that these labels have lost their former relevance. This article offers a comparative analysis of the Israeli, Polish, and Hungarian party systems. Using qualitative content analysis, it examines party platforms and politicians’ speeches in order to assess the significance of political labels both in political narratives and academic debate. Two main research topics concerning political systems of the three countries are explored in the article: the blurring of the traditional left-right divisions and the partial adoption of an anti-establishment agenda by mainstream parties.

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Adaptive Regulation

A Possible Model for Regulation and Innovation in Personal Social Services

Lihi Lahat and Yekoutiel Sabah


The provision of personal social services in Israel has recently changed, with many services now outsourced to non-governmental organizations. This shift requires the strengthening of regulatory mechanisms, yet the unique characteristics of personal social services make it difficult to create an efficient regulatory framework. By linking insights derived from the literature on regulation to the specific features of these services, this article presents a conceptual model for their regulation. The model incorporates aspects of innovation in the public sector, including a more comprehensive learning and collaborative process and a new rhetorical language. The proposed regulatory approach consists of three stages: mapping, the design of regulatory instruments, and implementation and evaluation. Applied to the Israeli experience here, this approach may also be relevant for other countries.

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Book Reviews

David N. Myers, Pnina Lahav, Sarab Abu-Rabia-Queder, Adi Mahalel, and Lauren B. Strauss

Derek Penslar, Theodor Herzl: The Charismatic Leader (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2020), 256 pp. Hardback, $26.00.

Sharon Geva, Women in the State of Israel: The Early Years [in Hebrew] (Jerusalem: Magnes Publishing House, 2020), 304 pp. Paperback, $20.00. eBook, $13.00.

Vered Kraus and Yuval P. Yonay, Facing Barriers: Palestinian Women in a Jewish-Dominated Labor Market (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018), 298 pp. Hardback, $99.99.

Rachel Rojanski, Yiddish in Israel: A History (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2020), 338 pp. Hardback, $95.00. Paperback, $40.00. eBook, $19.99.

Shalom Goldman, Starstruck in the Promised Land: How the Arts Shaped American Passions about Israel (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2019), 256 pp. Hardback, $28.00. eBook, $21.99.

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EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region

A new space for a study of novel forms of diplomacy

Zane Šime


The evolution of the EU multilevel governance unleashes new dynamics that hold a potential to contribute to the theory-building of paradiplomacy and honing of a more nuanced understanding what is to be understood with science diplomacy in the EU specific setting. When evaluated in the context of a broader body of literature on paradiplomacy and science diplomacy, new empirical examples from the EU macro-regional governance level, such as the discussed role of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg in coordinating a flagship of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region called “Baltic Science Network,” should be treated with caution in terms of paying full attention to the distinct institutional environment in which a sub-national actor operates and pursues its initiatives.


La evolución de la gobernanza multiniveles en la UE desencadena una nueva dinámica que podría contribuir a la teorización de la para-diplomacia y a una comprensión más matizada de diplomacia científica en el marco específico de la UE. Cuando se evalúan en el contexto general de la literatura sobre para-diplomacia y diplomacia científica, los nuevos ejemplos empíricos de gobernanza macro-regional europea, como el controvertido papel de la Ciudad Libre y Hanseática de Hamburgo en la coordinación del “Baltic Science Network” como parte de la estrategia europea para la región del Mar Báltico, deben tratarse con cautela con respecto a la atención al entorno institucional diferenciado en el que un agente sub-nacional opera y lleva a cabo sus iniciativas.


L'évolution de la gouvernance multi-niveaux de l'UE génère une nouvelle dynamique qui pourrait contribuer à la théorisation de la paradiplomatie et à une compréhension plus nuancée du concept de diplomatie scientifique dans le cadre spécifique de l'UE. Lorsqu'ils sont évalués dans le contexte d'ensemble de la li.. érature sur la paradiplomatie et la diplomatie scientifique, les nouveaux exemples empiriques de gouvernance macro-régionale au sein de l'UE, tels que le rôle disputé de la Ville Libre et Hanséatique de Hambourg dans la coordination d'une stratégie de l'UE pour la région de la mer Baltique appelée “Baltic Science Network”, doivent être traités avec prudence pour ce qui est de l'a.. ention portée à l'environnement institutionnel distinct dans lequel un acteur sous-national opère et poursuit ses initiatives.

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Explaining sustainable regional integration to my parents

Zenyram Koff Maganda

I have been immersed in sustainable development and regional integration since I was a baby through the activities of the RISC Consortium. I have met people coming from different parts of the world to discuss their regions and how they affect communities. I have had the opportunity to travel and see how life is in different world regions, how people are the same, and how they are different. One day, my parents asked me to explain to them what “sustainable regional integration” means. This is my answer.

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“I’ll Do Business with Anyone”

Arab Teachers in Jewish Schools as a Disruptive Innovation

Rakefet Ron Erlich, Shahar Gindi, and Michal Hisherik


Given the surplus of Arab teachers and the shortage of Jewish teachers in Israel, the government has adopted the policy of employing Arab teachers in Jewish schools, contrary to the dominant nationalistic agenda. We argue that this low-cost solution meets the criteria for disruptive innovation in that it flies under the radar and has the potential to proliferate and change the existing social order. Through surveys and interviews with boundary-crossing Arab teachers, this article finds that teachers circumvent power structures in three social fields. In the Arab community, work in Jewish schools helps teachers bypass nepotism and provides a new path for upward mobility. In the education system, boundary-crossing teachers disrupt segregation. And at the state level, this innovation may improve Jewish-Arab relations.

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“If the coronavirus doesn’t kill us, hunger will”

Regional absenteeism and the Wayuu permanent humanitarian crisis

Claudia Puerta Silva, Esteban Torres Muriel, Roberto Carlos Amaya Epiayú, Alicia Dorado González, Fatima Epieyú, Estefanía Frías Epinayú, Álvaro Ipuana Guariyü, Miguel Ramírez Boscán, and Jakeline Romero Epiayú

For more than 30 years after the arrival of the first multinational coal company in La Guajira, the Wayuu have raised their voices. They denounce the extermination of their people, the dispossession of their territory and their resources, and the negligence of the Colombian and Venezuelan states in facing a humanitarian crisis caused by hunger and the death of more than 4,000 children. The World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 pandemic within this context.

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Innovation in Israel

Between Politics, Society, and Culture

Sigal Ben-Rafael Galanti, Fany Yuval, and Assaf Meydani

The past decade has witnessed a growing number of theoretical and empirical studies analyzing the components of innovation; the ways in which it filters into political, social, and cultural systems; how it accelerates; what drives its existence; and its advantages and disadvantages (Seeck and Diehl 2017). This special issue, a joint initiative of the Israel Political Science Association (ISPSA) and Israel Studies Review, seeks to examine innovation in the Israeli political and societal sphere. Rooted in different disciplines, the articles are diverse yet connected to the political world, offering a distinctive preliminary mosaic that highlights the theme of innovation in Israel as it unfolds between politics, society, and culture.

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Innovation in Protest Strategies of Ethiopian Immigrants’ Organizations in Israel

Adi Binhas


Since the 1990s, organizations formed by Israelis of Ethiopian origin (IEO) have criticized the government's policy toward them. This article deals with the development of, and innovation in, those organizations’ activities. Our research question looks at the elements of innovation that helped these organizations improve the effectiveness of their work with the government and in the public sphere. We base our study on interviews with IEO activists who participated in the community's protests in the 1990s, 2015, and 2020. Our theoretical overview incorporates a global perspective on innovation in policymaking and the effects of NGO networks on government policy. The article describes the development and innovation of NGOs in Israel alongside similar cases in other countries.

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Innovations in Israel’s Civics Textbooks

Enlightening Trends in Non-Western Democracies

Sigal Ben-Rafael Galanti, Paz Carmel, and Alon Levkowitz


Classic Western democracies (those of Western Europe and the Anglophone world) view the teaching of civics as a policy instrument through which liberal values, democracy, and even globalization are introduced to future citizens, thus expecting to assure the persistence of democracy. In present-day democracies in general, and mainly in non-Western democracies, however, civics assumes other forms, including the study of nationalism. This article analyzes innovations in the teaching of civics in Israel by examining the changes in school textbooks that accompany changing national leaderships. We highlight the current Israeli high school civics textbook, written under a significantly rightist-religious government. Assuming that civics textbooks express the political credo of ruling elites, our findings suggest similarities between trends in Israel and non-Western democracies, hinting at the fragility of democratization in general and chiefly outside the West.