The earliest goal of NIPI, in 1971, was to place Israel on the world map for neurosciences and clinical investigation in diseases of the nervous system. We, and other like-minded government agencies and universities, have clearly succeeded in that goal. The Institute has played a crucial role in transforming psychobiology in Israel from a fledgling discipline of 56 scientists to a dynamic and vibrant scientific community of over 1,000 expert researchers and clinicians, with a wealth of scientific findings.
Our national, rather than institutional, focus is quite unique among philanthropic initiatives that support biomedical research in Israel. We have grantees at all Israeli universities, research institutes and major hospitals. The Institute's grants are awarded competitively, after review by the Scientific Advisory Board, with representatives from every major research university and hospital in the country, and local and foreign external reviewers. Our annual grants, leveraged by matching allocations from partner institutions, now total two million dollars annually.
NIPI’s largest investment is in its Young Investigator Grant program, which provides researchers newly appointed to faculty positions with two years of non-salary financial support to conduct innovative research. The Charles E. Smith Fellowship in Honor of Prof. Joel Elkes is awarded to the most outstanding of these young researchers, and offers three years of research support. The Charles E. Smith Extended Grants in Memory, and new parallel grants in Basic and Clinical Psychobiology sponsor in-depth and broad-scale research projects of more veteran researchers who have attained positions up to associate professor. These grants, providing support for three years, enable outstanding researchers to conduct innovative projects on memory,and in the different rhelms of basic and clinical areas of psychobiology. The National Core Facility Grant supports a unique facility serving the entire psychobiology community with state-of-the-art equipment and know-how, otherwise not available in Israel. The Institute funds a balance between basic science initiatives – such as fundamental research into memory, perception, and cognition – and clinical, genetic and pharmacological research. We take great pride in our grant recipients from both research paths.