Field notes

From settlements to high-tech start-ups in Israel

The socialist kibbutz movement shaped the early state of Israel more than any other political force. After barely escaping bankruptcy, it was forced to reinvent itself. Now, it may become a new engine of growth.

Once, it was where kibbutz members would gather daily to have meals together and attend to communal issues, such as voting on how to spend their money on fixing tractors. But today, the huge hall that was a gathering point for farm workers from Kibbutz Nir Am is undergoing drastic changes.

The hall - which functioned as a communal meeting point like a town hall would in Singapore - is filled with construction workers busy remodelling the premises.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 05, 2018, with the headline 'From settlements to high-tech start-ups '. Print Edition | Subscribe