Shalem College
Daniel Polisar

Dr. Daniel Polisar

Ph.D., Harvard University
B.A., Princeton University

Among the founders of Shalem College, Daniel Polisar served as president of the Shalem Center from 2002-2013, after holding posts as Director of Research, Academic Director, and Editor-In-Chief of the center’s journal Azure. Before joining Shalem, he was founder and director of Peace Watch, a non-partisan organization monitoring Israeli and Palestinian compliance with the Oslo Accords, and head of the Peace Watch observer team during the January 1996 Palestinian elections. Dr. Polisar received his B.A. in politics from Princeton University and his Ph.D. in government from Harvard University, where he was the recipient of Truman and Fulbright scholarships, as well as of a Mellon Fellowship. His research interests include the history and philosophy of higher education, education in Israel, and Israeli constitutional development.

Dr. Polisar has testified before the Knesset Constitution Committee on Israel’s character as a Jewish state. Since 2005, he has served on the board of Metzilah, the Center of Zionist, Jewish, Liberal and Humanist Thought, and in 2006, he was appointed by the prime minister to be the first chairman of the National Herzl Council, responsible for commemorating the legacy of Theodor Herzl, a position he held for three years.

Full CV

Selected Publications


Choosing Freedom: Economic Policy for Israel, 1997-2000, Daniel Polisar and Yitzhak Klein, eds. (Jerusalem: Shalem Press, 1997).


Book Chapters

Daniel Polisar and Aaron Wildavsky, "From Resilience to Anticipation: Why the Tort Law is Unsafe," in A. Wildavsky, Searching for Safety (New Brunswick: Transaction, 1987), pp. 169-186.



Daniel Polisar and Aaron Wildavsky, "From Individual to System Blame: A Cultural Analysis of Historical Change in the Law of Torts," Journal of Policy History 1 (2) (1989), pp. 129-155.

"Death by Taxes," Azure 15 (Summer 2003), pp. 23-32. [English and Hebrew]

"Yasser Arafat and the Myth of Legitimacy," Azure 13 (Summer 2002), pp. 29-87.

"On the Quiet Revolution in Citizenship Education," Azure 11 (Summer 2001), pp. 66-104.

"Making History," Azure 9 (Spring 2000), pp. 14-22. [English and Hebrew] Also Published in New Essays on Zionism (Jerusalem: Shalem Press, 2006).

"Is Iran the Only Model for a Jewish State?" Azure 7 (Spring 1999), pp. 18-22. [English and Hebrew]