Recent discoveries of significant reserves of natural gas in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Israel have catapulted the Mediterranean Sea into the international spotlight and onto Israel's national agenda.

In response to these developments and for the first time in Israel's history, seven of its universities, one college and two governmental research institutes have agreed to work cooperatively under the leadership of the University of Haifa to address an unprecedented array of scientific, technological, economic, security, and environmental challenges and opportunities.

The associate institutes of MERCI are: University of Haifa; Technion- Israel Institute of Technology; The Hebrew University of Jerusalem; Ben-Gurion University of the Negev; Bar-Ilan University; Tel-Aviv University; Weizmann Institute of Science; Ruppin Academic Center; Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research; Geological Survey of Israel. 

The Mediterranean Sea Research Center of Israel (MERCI) brings together scientists from all relevant and necessary disciplines to meet the important scientific and technical challenges in the coastal and offshore Eastern Mediterranean. In parallel, it continues its mission to develop advanced infrastructure to study the Eastern Mediterranean comprehensively. MERCI sets up interdisciplinary, inter-institutional projects that will foster cooperation between researchers from a wide range of scientific fields. It train a new generation of scientists by giving them the necessary tools to meet this important set of challenges. 

MERCI plays a key role in shaping national policy on resource management, economic development, security, peace, and the environment.

The Mediterranean Sea Research Center of Israel focuses on:

  • Developing the modern, scientific infrastructure needed to study the coastal and offshore Eastern Mediterranean
  • Educating a new generation of scientists and researchers who will serve as Israel's decision makers in academia, the government, industry and NGOs
  • Ensuring sustainable development of Israel’s national resources in the Eastern Mediterranean

Israel's energy and environmental policy-making must be driven by the highest caliber of interdisciplinary scientific research. MERCI's activities set Israel on the path to academic excellence and sustainable energy independence that will ultimately strengthen Israel at home and abroad.