Campaign strengthens Jewish-Arab engineer collaboration amid tensions


In the midst of heightened tensions and unrest in Israel, a noteworthy campaign is underway that showcases the resilience of Jewish-Arab cooperation

Spearheaded by the Tsofen organization and supported by prominent hi-tech companies such as Intuit, Hailo, and Sanofi, the initiative aims to fortify the bonds between Jewish and Arab workers, particularly within the Israeli hi-tech industry.

The campaign, running on various online platforms, features photographs of Arab and Jewish employees from participating companies, accompanied by the empowering slogan, “Working together -now is the time to project the voice of partnership.” This concerted effort seeks to amplify a message of hope and unity during these challenging times, underscoring the importance of collaboration in the workplace. 

A long history of promoting coexistence

Tsofen, a non-profit organization founded in 2008 by Jewish and Arab hi-tech professionals and economists, focuses on integrating Arab engineers into the hi-tech sector. In the current climate of heightened societal tension brought on by the war, the organization emphasizes the crucial role workplaces play as meeting grounds for diverse communities, providing opportunities for connection and understanding. 

“The challenging period we’ve been experiencing since October 7 emphasizes our collective duty to address the issue. It warms the heart to see those companies that have already mobilized to take part in an event that deepens the interpersonal and social discourse and contributes to the tightening of the human fabric in the organization,” said Maisam Jaljuli, CEO of  Tsofen.

Tsofen encourages the establishment and development of hi-tech centers in major Arab cities and communities. (credit: Courtesy)

“We at Tsofen call on more companies to take actions that strengthen the sense of belonging of the engineers from the Arab society, and invite more companies to join the campaign and use Tsofen to build a bridge and a conversation.”

Tsofen, deeply rooted in both the Arab community and Israel’s hi-tech industry, operates with a dual mission – to establish hi-tech hubs in Arab towns and integrate thousands of Arab engineers into hi-tech firms. The organization, recognized for its commitment to fostering mutual understanding between Jews and Arabs, received the Speaker of the Israeli Parliament’s Prize in 2016.

Significant growth in the hi-tech sector

In 2008, Arab engineers represented a mere 0.5% of employees in Israeli hi-tech, amounting to around 350 individuals. Today, this figure has surged to 3.5%, with approximately 5,000 Arab engineers making significant contributions to the industry. Tsofen’s goal is to elevate this percentage to at least 10% by 2025, reflecting a commitment to a more inclusive and diverse hi-tech landscape.

As Israel grapples with internal challenges, the collaborative efforts of organizations and supportive companies serve as a beacon of hope, illustrating that even in times of adversity, there is value in the promotion of unity and cooperation.


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