Israel is not the US
Professor Israel Aumann, a 2005 Nobel Prize Laureate in Economics states, "Israeli universities should adopt differential payment for academic staff as is customary in the United States (“A unique place,” Grapevine, January 13). "Differential wages will lead to competition, new ideas, progress, which is how evolution and economics work."
I beg to differ. In Israeli universities, the struggle to be promoted through the lecturer, senior lecturer, associate professor, tenure, to full professor status is more than enough incentive to be a better lecturer and conduct high-quality research and far outweighs financial incentives. Salary increases are anyway achieved by promotions.
In addition, it is wrong to compare the US, with its thousands of universities and colleges, with Israel, which has far fewer institutions of higher learning. There is far less opportunity for Israeli academics to migrate competitively from university to university or from college to college. The economics of large numbers does not apply to the economics of small numbers.
In addition, in Israel, where everybody knows everybody else, it could set the stage for endless confrontations and manipulations.
YIGAL HOROWITZ Professor Emeritus of Radiation Physics