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Ethical Leadership in the Public Square

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Study Resources

The #MeToo movement calls for a new kind of ethical guidance that reimagines authority and expertise. Below, we curate ethical questions and responses from victims/survivors and contemporary leaders, as well as from the Jewish ethical tradition.

Respect and Responsibility: A Jewish Ethics Study Guide

Respect and Responsibility: A Jewish Ethics Study Guide is a cross-denominational collection of study texts to support Jewish organizations in cultivating cultures of safety and respect. We were proud to partner with Sacred Spaces to develop this resource, which can be found here.

RRA Convention Ethics Plenary: Case Studies From the #MeToo Movement with Rabbi Mira Wasserman

Within and beyond the Jewish community, victims and survivors of sexual harassment and other institutional abuses of power are telling their stories. How can Jewish texts and traditions guide our responses to this #metoo moment, helping us to act with justice and compassion? This session will combine Hevruta study of classical Jewish texts and small-group discussions of case studies.

Jewish Ethics and Covid-19

The Covid-19 pandemic confronts Jewish communities and organizations with pressing ethical questions. This guide to values-based decision-making curates sources from the Jewish ethical tradition and insights from today’s leading ethical thinkers.


Research & Resources



Face-To-Face: The Jewish Ethics Beit Midrash

Face-to-Face: The Jewish Ethics Beit Midrash

Relational. Rigorous. Relevant. In 2019-2020, we launched an experiment in using the practice of Talmud study to enliven and strengthen Jewish communal life and leadership in Philadelphia and beyond. Learn more. The project is currently on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

2019 Conference: Jewish Values & the Ethical Now: A Conference in Celebration of Rabbi David A. Teutsch, Ph.D. 

This conference brought leading Jewish ethicists into conversation with the students and colleagues of Rabbi David A. Teutsch, Ph.D., who engage ethics in their work as rabbis, leaders, and professionals. It was a great success.

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Seminar A: Leadership, Power, and Gender
Louis E. Newman, Ph.D.“Elements of a Jewish Ethic of Leadership”
Ruth W. Messinger Leadership and Moral Courage”
Rabbi Deborah Waxman, Ph.D. Digging Trenches and Digging Wells”
Rabbi Georgette Kennebrae “The Ethics of Esther Moments”
Rabbi Mira Beth Wasserman, Ph.D. chairs

Public Symposium: Jewish Values and the Ethical Now
Paul Root Wolpe, Ph.D.“What we misunderstand about ‘Values’: Jewish Ethics as Halakhah”
Rabbi Julia Watts Belser, Ph.D. “Drawing Torah from Troubling Texts: Gender, Disability, and Jewish Feminist Ethics”
Rabbi David A. Teutsch, Ph.D. responds
Monday, March 11, 2019

Seminar B: Voice of the Spirit in Prayer; Voice of the Spirit in Action
Rabbi Lawrence Hoffman, Ph.D.“Judaism as a Conversation”
Rabbi Toba Spitzer“Rain of Justice, Voice from Sinai: Theology, Ethics, and Metaphor”
Reverend Katie Day, Ph.D. “Empathy and Ethics in Navigating Pluralism”
Rabbi Nancy Fuchs Kreimer, Ph.D. responds
Elsie Stern, Ph.D. chairs

Seminar C:  Ethical Responses to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Rabbi Amy Eilberg, D.Min.
Rabbi David Ellenson, Ph.D.
Rabbi Asher Lopatin
Rabbi Laurie Zimmerman
Rabbi Jacob J. Staub, Ph.D. 

Closing Session
Rabbi Jonathan Crane, Ph.D.
Rabbi Mira Beth Wasserman, Ph.D.
Rabbi David A. Teutsch, Ph.D.

Public Symposium co-sponsored by the Hebert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania and the National Museum of American Jewish History

Mira Wasserman and David Teutsch
Make a donation to The David A. Teutsch Fund for Ethical Leadership

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Training the next generation of groundbreaking rabbis

Modeling respectful conversations on pressing Jewish issues

Curating original, Jewish rituals, and convening Jewish creatives

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