The goal of the TELEM Forum was to pool various governmental budgetary resources – and catalyzing the participation of others – to undertake major joint science and technology initiatives in the national interest. Since 2005, the Ministry of Economy has taken over administrative responsibility for the Forum.
TELEM’s members are the heads of Israel’s major national research-funding organizations: President of the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities (TELEM’s Chair), chairman of the Planning and Budgeting Committee of Israel’s Council for Higher Education, chief scientist of the Ministry of Economy, director general of the Ministry of Science, Technology, and Space, head of the Research and Development Division of the Ministry of Defense, and assistant head of the Budget Department of the Ministry of Finance.
Over the years, TELEM has initiated a string of scientific and technological projects, representing hundreds of millions of U.S. dollars in total, including the following:
• Nanotechnology research and infrastructure – $231.5 million
• Advanced photonics – $56 million
• Second-generation broadband Internet communication initiative – $38 million
• Brain research – $25 million
• Particle accelerator for the Nahal Soreq SARAF nuclear research center – $25 million
• Participation in the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) – $10 million
• Establishing equipment centers for biotechnology R&D – $10 million
• Stem cell R&D equipment – $10 million
• Founding a national tissue bank – $8.9 million
• Creating the basis for a national grid for shared computer resources –$2.6 million