“International gatherings of intellectuals […] respond to a deep-seated need. People seek out mutuality and friendship outside of structured groups, political frameworks, and nationalistic affinities”, Emmanuel Levinas, 1957.

Started in 2014, NeuroBridges is a unique series of scientific meetings in neuroscience, which were initiated with a deep and strong belief that researchers have a responsibility both to advance scientific education and to promote common understanding between people from different nations. The organizers of NeuroBridges are convinced that establishing personal relations between Middle Eastern scientists through scientific dialog and collaborations can help alleviate the political distress in the Middle East.

Since 2017, Neurobridges meetings are held in the Fall in the magnificent medieval city of Cluny, Burgundy, France. They bring together students and postdocs from the Middle East and the Mediterranean region, including Egypt, Iran, Israel, Palestinian Territories, Lebanon, Morocco, Syria and Turkey, as well as from other regions in the world. During ten-days, the participants attend lectures delivered by leading neuroscientists, experimentalists as well as theoreticians, who address fundamental questions in system, computational and behavioral neuroscience. In addition to the lectures, the students work in groups on reading papers and perform small research projects. The programs are shaped to guarantee plenty of time for informal gathering and discussions about ‘everything’, from science to politics, develop friendship and dream together about a better world.

Regrettably, Neurobridges2021 had to be cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemics. Applications to Neurobridges2022 will be open in January 2022.

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