Philanthropist and former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg was in Israel on Sunday to announce the launch of The Bloomberg-Sagol Center for City Leadership at Tel Aviv University (TAU), a local leadership program designed to help mayors across Israel deliver better and more equitable public services to residents, strengthen social bonds, and deepen ties with city leaders in both Jewish and Arab communities.
This program is based on a similar program established by Bloomberg Philanthropies and Harvard University in 2016 called the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative, which engages 40 mayors and 80 senior city leaders on a yearly basis.
The new TAU program will focus on strengthening the leadership and management skills of 20 mayors and key senior aides each consecutive year via five approaches: executive education conducted by Tel Aviv University and Harvard faculty at a later date in New York and Boston; support and training to lead city innovation projects; providing TAU students for 10-week summer internships in participating city halls; forging a local government alumni network; and assembling academics and scholars from across TAU for applied research on topics relevant to urban leadership.
This program, which is funded by both Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Sagol Family Foundation, will cover all expenses for its participants.
“Mayors are on the front lines of every crisis, whether it’s terrorism or a pandemic,” said Former Mayor Bloomberg, “The Bloomberg Harvard program has proved phenomenally successful, and now we’re glad to team up with our partners in Israel on a new program that builds on our success and will help local leaders across the State of Israel.”
“The job of mayor requires a vast range of managerial skills at the highest level and in our new program we intend to equip participants with helpful insights and a useful toolbox for making critical decisions and implementing innovation in the urban environment,” said inaugural faculty director Moshe Zviran.