As is quickly becoming my summer habit, I’m on my way back to Israel–for the ROI Summit, for which I’ll be working as a consultant, and for the PresenTense Institute for Creative Zionism, for which I’m on the steering committee. While I’m sorry to be missing the chance to do another birthright trip this summer, these other two involvements are presenting exciting moments over the course of the summer, and I’m really excited to jump right in, with orientation week for PICZ beginning just as I arrive Monday morning.

During orientation week, leading social welfare innovators, a leading hi-tech and social policy visionary, and entrepreneurs and innovators of all stripes will gather to lend their experience to the first Summer Institute for Creative Zionism. And while most PICZ events during the summer will be members- and by-invitation-only, the first week, you’re invited to celebrate with us! (Take special note of the networking event on Thursday, which is listed first because it’s going to be a tremendous opportunity.)

All of the opening week events are free, and begin after regular working hours (19:00) at the PICZ location in Jerusalem’s Rechavia neighborhood, near the new AviChai building and Ussishkin Street. Please contact us for the exact address:

Thursday, June 21, 19:00-23:00: Summer Networking Kick-Off Event

Come meet other creative, innovative and entrepreneurial people from across the spectrum of professional and ideological life – and participate in a First-Tuesdays-esque networking session. Meet and greet some of the brightest minds and warmest hearts of the Jewish People. So, if you’re a social entrepreneur, a hi-tech programmer, a Venture Capitalist, a teacher, an activist, a poet or just your average creative genius, come down to the PICZ House and have an experience and a drink on us. Open to all, this is a chance to meet and get to know leaders in the fields of social entrepreneurs, educators venture capitalism and philanthropists.
Why: Because with so much talent in one place, it would be a shame to miss it.
RSVPs are encouraged:

And don’t miss…

Tuesday, June 19, 19:00-23:00: Social Action in Israel -A Panel with Leading Young Social Innovators
Asaf Baner, founder and director, B’Maagalei Tzedek – dedicated to bringing business practices in line with Jewish Ethics and Judaism; Roy Folkman, activist, New Spirit, a group of young activists working to make Jerusalem a younger, more prosperous and attractive city for young people, and director of the Hebrew University Student Body; Tal Cohen, founder, Teach for Israel, a new initiative whose mission is to minimize and even eliminate the existing educational inequities by expanding the educational opportunity of the students in the Negev and Galilee by making higher education attainable.

Wednesday, June 20, 19:00-23:00: What Makes a Start-Up Culture? A Conversation with Jacob Ner-David

What makes a startup culture–and is Israel exceptional when it comes into transforming ideas into reality? An open discussion with Jacob Ner-David, managing partner of Jerusalem Capital !, LP and is one of the world’s leading hi-tech entrepreneurs and VCs. See website for complete bio.

Plus, a sneak peek at what’s coming up, all of which can be accessed online.

June 24: Yom Rishon la’Rishonim: Benny Levin on Hi-Tech and Society – All Members
June 25: On Zionism and Futurism by Tsvi Bisk – Fellows Only
June 27: Business: On Hi-Tech Present and Future – All Members
June 29: Master Innovator Lecture by Roni Aloni-Sadovnik and Project Workshop – Fellows Only

We’ve selected some really inspiring fellows and the steering committee, especially the Israelis, have done a fabulous job of creating a speakers list that reads like a “Who’s Who” of contemporary Israeli leadership. Won’t you share in the excitement? (Press inquiries welcome!)

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Esther Kustanowitz

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