Israeli President Reuven Rivlin hosted the signing ceremony of a cooperation agreement between the Israel National Academy of Sciences and Humanities (INASH) and the American National Academy of Sciences (ANAS) on Sunday.

“[It] marks the beginning of an official partnership between our national academies, in the hope of many more decades of mutual collaboration,” said Rivlin. “The friendship between our two countries is deep and long-lasting. Israel and the U.S. are at the forefront of scientific research, each in its own right. Our joined efforts are sure to bring us incredible discoveries.

“Sitting here with us today are the presidents of the Israeli and American national academies,” he continued. “Both are well-known researchers, highly respected in their fields, and both are women. A hundred years ago, no one would have thought this to be possible. It makes me proud to know that the Israeli and American National Academies share a commitment to increase diversity in academia.”

Rivlin was referring to the presence of INASH president Nili Cohen and ANAS president Marcia McNutt.

The National Academy of Sciences is a nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C., and provides independent and objective advice to the country on matters regarding science and technology.

Founded in 1961, INASH is the senior body in the Israeli scientific community and brings together Israel’s top scientists to advance scientific discovery, to advise the government on national science policy and planning, to cooperate with worldwide partners and to represent Israeli science in the global arena.