The Suzanne and Charles Goodman Brain Sciences Building

Building the Future
of Brain Sciences

The Suzanne and Charles Goodman Brain Sciences Building, home of ELSC, is located on a hill at the heart of the Edmond J. Safra Campus in Givat Ram. It was designed by Lord Norman Foster, of the prestigious British architectural firm Foster + Partners, in collaboration with the Israeli firm Baer, Shifman-Nathan Architects. The building opened its doors for scientific activity in 2018.

The building’s façade is enveloped by a screen of gleaming metal filigree that depicts neurons and the connections between them. The façade is inspired by the drawings of Santiago Ramon y Cajal, the 19th-century artist and anatomist who is considered the founding father of modern neuroscience.

The building is arranged as two parallel wings that surround a central courtyard. The three upper levels house 28 laboratories linked by social hubs, which encourage interaction and the exchange of ideas between researchers and students of different disciplines. The ground floor includes teaching facilities, the 200-seat Isaac and Luba Becker Auditorium, the Arditi Library, the Brandman & Gottlieb Cafeteria, the Palm Beach Courtyard, and the Martine de Souza-Dassault Brain Art Gallery. The building is also home to the Helmsley Brain Imaging Center, which includes the ELSC Core Microscopy Unit and the ELSC Neuroimaging Unit.

Photo: Yoram Aschheim

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Photo: Harel Gilboa

The open Palm Beach Courtyard at the heart of the building establishes new circulation routes through the campus and draws the greenery of the surrounding landscape into the building. Planted with citrus trees and with a water feature along its length, the courtyard forms a quiet, reflective space and a cool microclimate. The Suzanne and Charles Goodman Brain Sciences Building is a green building designed for low energy consumption.

At an event in March 2013 honoring the Goodman and Crown families for their generous contributions to the building, Barbara Goodman-Manilow made a heartfelt speech on behalf of the family:

“We are here today to honor my mother’s memory, and our expectations are that the brain science research that comes from the Hebrew University will save the lives of other mothers and other loved ones. My father’s history with the Jewish Agency and with the Hebrew University is a powerful legacy for our family. His tenures on the University’s board and as chair have paralleled the advent of numerous breakthroughs in our ability to rehabilitate people who have experienced neurological trauma and disabilities. This gift symbolizes my father’s success in engaging future generations of our family in the important work that he has humbly championed”.

“Working memory”