Ilana F. Silber is Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Bar-Ilan University, Israel. Her major fields of interest are sociological theory and the sociology of gift-giving and philanthropy to which she also brings a cross cutting engagement with comparative historical and interpretative cultural analysis.
Current research projects explore cultural and institutional aspects of elite philanthropy (internationally in addition to a specific interest in the Israeli context), and changing patterns of charity and philanthropy in past and present contexts.
She has studied Sociology and Psychology and did her Ph.D. in Sociology at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, was a visiting fellow at Harvard University, Princeton University and Yale University, is Faculty Fellow of the Center for Cultural Sociology since 2014, Research Associate of the Center for Generosity since 2017, and a member of the M.A.U.S.S (Mouvement Anti-Utilitariste dans les Sciences Sociales) since 1998.
She is generally engaged in furthering dialogue between various branches of the human sciences (history, cultural studies, religion in particular), as well as between alternative branches of sociological theory and gift theory. She has conducted empirical research on elite philanthropy in Israel, writtten on the history of the nonprofit sector in Israel, and supervised several Phd dissertations on various facets of the philanthropic sector in Israel.