Founded in 1969, Ben Gurion University of the Negev’s primary goal is to act as a catalyst in the development of the Negev community – the desert area that comprises more 60% of the country. BGU was inspired by David Ben Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, who believed that Israel’s scientific future lies in this region.
The Ben Gurion University of the Negev plays an important role in promoting David Ben Gurion’s vision, developing a top institution of education and research in Israel, fostering the Negev community and promoting the University’s knowledge around Israel and the world. With more than 20,000 population on campuses in Sde Boqer, Beer-Sheva and Eilat, BGU is a school with a conscience, integrating high academic standards with community involvement, dedicated to sustainable development of the Negev.
BGU is a leading research university in Israel with a global reputation when it comes to research in many areas (nanotechnology, emergency medicine, alternative energy, biotechnology, environmental engineering, community medicine, etc.). BGU is a recognized ‘Green Campus’ – a project initiated by the Ministry of Environment that aims to implement different environment issues in higher education.
The scientific community at BGU counts more than 1400 researchers and that includes almost 300 scientists (who came from the NIS, the former Soviet Union), 800 faculty appointments and more than 300 medical clinicians. In keeping with its promise, BGU has served Negev by promoting education, agriculture and industry in the region.
BGU is a world leader when it comes to arid zone research, providing its expertise to a lot of developing countries. With the growing ties with its neighboring Arab countries, the BGU has worked to put the foundations for academic and scientific co-operations all over the Middle East.
Scientists and researchers at Ben Gurion University have showed that they have the ability and the dedication to make a difference. The primary objectives of BGU are education and research. With this mandate, they strive to solicit financial resources to sustain research activities from funding agencies, foundations and grant organizations, both inside and outside Israel.
Since the start of BGU, research has been the primary priority of its academic life. The faculty and their long commitment to research have brought many noteworthy developments and these significant contributions keep on continuing until today.
Israel’s Research and Development Authority has the overall administrative responsibility for Ben Gurion University’s research endeavor. The agency seeks to uphold a research environment that promotes creativity, initiative and collaboration. Its specific goals are to give support for school research efforts, maximize the benefits of research findings of BGU to science and the Negev community and to support research resources and needs.
This year, BGU is offering more than 5,400 degree including Bachelors in Emergency Medicine Service, one of the few schools the grants this course. The faculty body as well as the school body is diverse, hailing from different parts of Israel, from Jews, Christians to Arab Israelis and Moslems.
The Ben Gurion University of the Negev Eilat Campus is still a young campus, yet has the highest growth rate in the country. It opened its doors in 2002 with only about 200 students, but more than 700 students are now studying in one of the 16 academic departments opened in Eilat.