Aharon Barak

Aharon Barak studied law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem before earning his LL.M. from Harvard Law School. His education prepared him for his transformative tenure as President of Israel's Supreme Court.

9 Min Read

Aharon Barak is widely regarded as one of the most influential legal scholars and jurists in Israel’s history. As President of the Supreme Court of Israel from 1995 to 2006, he helped transform the country’s legal landscape and cement the power of judicial review. But before rising to such heights, Barak embarked on an illustrious academic journey that prepared him for his pioneering career. So where exactly did Aharon Barak go to college?

Quick Facts About Aharon Barak

  • Born in Kaunas, Lithuania in 1936
  • Immigrated to Israel with his family in 1947
  • Studied law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem
  • Received his LL.M. degree from Harvard Law School in 1962
  • Served as a professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Law School from 1963 to 1975
  • Appointed as Attorney General of Israel in 1975
  • Appointed to the Supreme Court of Israel in 1978
  • Appointed President of the Supreme Court in 1995
  • Served as President until 2006
  • Continued to write and teach after retiring from the Supreme Court
  • Author of several influential books on law and human rights
  • Visiting Professor at Yale Law School and University of Toronto Faculty of Law

Who is Aharon Barak?

Born in Lithuania in 1936, Aharon Barak immigrated with his family to the British Mandate of Palestine in 1947, later settling in Jerusalem. As a young man passionate about justice and legal theory, he enrolled at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem to study law.

Barak excelled in his legal education, earning both his bachelor’s degree in 1958 and master’s degree in 1960 from the Hebrew University. His sharp intellect and mastery of complex legal principles were evident early on.

After completing his initial legal training in Israel, Barak set his sights on Harvard Law School, determined to expand his knowledge even further. He traveled across the world to America, where he received his prestigious LL.M. degree in 1962.

Where Did Aharon Barak Go To College?

Hebrew University of Jerusalem

After immigrating to the newly established state of Israel as a child, Aharon Barak pursued his initial legal education at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He studied law at the university’s Faculty of Law, which had been founded in 1949 shortly after the state’s creation.

Barak thrived in the intellectually stimulating environment of the Hebrew University, demonstrating a brilliant aptitude for complex legal theory from an early age. He received his bachelor’s degree in law from the university in 1958.

Remaining at the Hebrew University for his postgraduate education, Barak completed his master’s degree in law in 1960. His time at the university helped cement his dedication to justice and human rights, values that would define his later jurisprudence on the Supreme Court.

Harvard Law School

After earning his initial law degrees from the Hebrew University, Aharon Barak set his sights on studying at the world’s premier law school – Harvard. He traveled to America in order to undertake an LL.M. degree at Harvard Law School.

At Harvard, Barak had the opportunity to learn from some of America’s top legal scholars. Surrounded by brilliant peers from around the globe, he honed his skills in legal reasoning, comparative law, and judicial process.

Barak graduated with his LL.M. from Harvard Law School in 1962, equipped with new perspectives on constitutionalism, rights, and the role of courts. His time at Harvard helped shape his vision for the Israeli judiciary.

Aharon Barak’s Education and Career

Professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem

After completing his LL.M. at Harvard, Aharon Barak returned to Israel, where he embarked on an academic career at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He joined the faculty of the university’s Law School in 1963.

As a professor, Barak taught courses in civil procedure, evidence, and jurisprudence. He mentored a generation of Israeli law students, imparting both theoretical knowledge and a strong sense of justice.

Barak served as a professor at the Hebrew University for over a decade, from 1963 until 1975. This period helped establish him as one of Israel’s foremost legal scholars.

Attorney General of Israel

In 1975, Aharon Barak’s sterling reputation as a legal mind led to his appointment as Attorney General of Israel. As Attorney General from 1975 to 1978, he served as the government’s chief legal advisor.

The Attorney General oversees the state prosecution system and represents the state in all legal matters. By appointing Barak, Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin demonstrated great confidence in his legal judgment and integrity.

Supreme Court of Israel

Aharon Barak reached the pinnacle of his judicial career when he was appointed to the Supreme Court of Israel in 1978. He joined the Court as a Justice, gaining the opportunity to help shape Israel’s legal development through his rulings and opinions.

Barak sat on the Supreme Court for 17 years between 1978 and 1995. In this time, he was involved in groundbreaking cases defining the powers of the Court and establishing the validity of judicial review over executive action and parliamentary laws.

President of the Supreme Court

In 1995, Aharon Barak attained the highest judicial position in Israel when he was appointed President of the Supreme Court. As President, he presided over the Court for over a decade until 2006.

Barak’s tenure as President coincided with the “Constitutional Revolution” in Israeli law – a period of judicial activism and assertiveness. Under his leadership, the Court established its authority to strike down unconstitutional parliamentary laws through judicial review.

By championing judicial oversight of the executive and legislative branches, Barak helped enshrine the independence of Israel’s judiciary and solidify the rule of law. His transformative Presidency cemented his legacy as one of Israel’s most important jurists.

Follow Aharon Barak on Social Media

Unfortunately, Aharon Barak does not currently have public social media accounts. However, you can stay up to date on news and information about him through the following pages:


Where was Aharon Barak born?

Aharon Barak was born in Kaunas, Lithuania in 1936.

What university did Aharon Barak attend for undergraduate studies?

Barak studied at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel for both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in law.

Did Aharon Barak go to law school in America?

Yes, after completing his initial legal education in Israel, Barak attended Harvard Law School in America to earn his LL.M. degree.

What important role did Aharon Barak serve from 1995 to 2006?

Barak served as the President of the Supreme Court of Israel from 1995 to 2006.

Where does Aharon Barak currently teach?

Since retiring from the Supreme Court, Barak has held positions as a Visiting Professor at Yale Law School and the University of Toronto Faculty of Law.