Understanding The Brain: Edmond & Lily Safra Center For Brain Sciences

"Man ought to know that from the brain, and only from the brain, arise our joys, delights, laughter and sports, as well as our sorrows, grief, despondency, and lamentations and especially we acquire wisdom and knowledge, see and hear, and know what is foul and what is fair, what is bad and what is good."

Hippocrates - 5th-century Greek physician


In 2009, more than a millennium after Hippocrates identified this aspect of our persona – the Hebrew University inaugurated the Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences (ELSC) building on its acknowledged excellence on neuroscience research.

Today, ELSC's scientists and physicians are eagerly embracing the challenge of deciphering exactly how the brain governs our lives. Delving deeply into the intricate interfaces that orchestrate the brain’s behavior, ELSC’s multidisciplinary teams are exploring the physiological relationships that explain how the brain functions and malfunctions. Marrying theory with practice, they are constantly acquiring new insights that can lead to innovative approaches and greater understanding of the brain sciences.



The Edmond J. Safra Foundation’s lead donation of $50 million launched the establishment of ELSC and continues to support this innovative center. Mr. Safra created his Swiss foundation to ensure that needy individuals and organizations would continue to receive his assistance and encouragement for many years to come. Following his death in 1999, his wife, Lily, assumed responsibility for ensuring that the Edmond J. Safra Foundation draws inspiration from its founder’s life and continues to be dedicated to his visionary beliefs.

The Friends of the Hebrew University in Europe are actively involved in providing significant support for the Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences as well as the university’s extensive academic and intellectual pursuits and instrumental in helping establish international collaborations.