Born in Israel in 1976, Harari received his PhD from the University of Oxford in 2002, and is currently a lecturer at the Department of History in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 2019, following the international success of his books, Yuval Noah Harari and Itzik Yahav co-founded Sapienship: a social impact company with projects in the fields of entertainment and education. Sapienship’s main goal is to focus the public conversation on the most important global challenges facing the world today.
Yuval Noah Harari gave keynote speeches on the future of humanity in Davos 2020 and 2018, on the World Economic Forum’s main Congress Hall stage. He regularly discusses global issues with heads of state, and has had public conversations with Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis. Harari has also met with French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, Argentine President Mauricio Macri, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, and Shanghai’s Mayor Ying Yong. In 2019, Harari sat down for a filmed discussion on technology and the future of society with Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and in 2018 he presented the first ever TED talk delivered by a digital avatar.
Harari originally specialized in world history, medieval history and military history. His current research focuses on macro-historical questions such as: What is the relationship between history and biology? What is the essential difference between Homo sapiens and other animals? Is there justice in history? Does history have a direction? Did people become happier as history unfolded? What ethical questions do science and technology raise in the 21st century?
Published in 2014, Harari’s Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind has become an international hit. 18.5 Million copies have been sold and the book was translated into 60 languages. It is a New York Times top 10 bestseller, and held positions #1-#3 on the Sunday Times’ bestseller list for 96 consecutive weeks. Sapiens was recommended by Barack Obama, Bill Gates, Natalie Portman, Janelle Monáe, Chris Evans and many others. The Guardian has credited Sapiens with revolutionizing the non-fiction market and popularizing ‘brainy books’.
In 2016 Prof. Harari returned with Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow, a critically acclaimed book that examines the big future projects facing humanity in the 21st century. Since its publication, 7.5 Million copies of the book have been sold worldwide, and it was translated into over 50 languages.
After exploring deep into the past and then the future, Yuval Noah Harari published 21 Lessons for the 21st Century in 2018. Here he stopped to take the pulse of our current global climate, focusing on the biggest questions of the present moment: What is really happening right now? What are today’s greatest challenges and choices? What should we pay attention to? Within its first year of publication, 4 Million copies of 21 Lessons have been sold worldwide and it was translated into over 40 languages.
In 2020 Harari (as creator and co-writer) joined forces with renowned comics artists David Vandermeulen (co-writer) and Daniel Casanave (illustrator). Together, they created the first volume of Sapiens: A Graphic History: a radical adaptation of the original Sapiens into a graphic novel series that is bursting with wit, humour and colour. This illustrated book casts Yuval Noah Harari in the role of guide, who takes the reader through the entire history of the human species, accompanied by a range of fictional characters and traveling through time, space, and popular culture references. The series will be published in 5 volumes.
Prof. Harari’s writings have received several accolades. In 2020, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from VUB (the Free University of Brussels), and received the CITIC Author of the Year prize in China, for Sapiens: A Graphic History. In 2019, 21 Lessons was honoured as ‘Knowledge Book of the Year’ by the German magazine Bild der Wissenschaft, Homo Deus was recognized as the ’Wise Book of the Year’ by Krakow’s Jagiellonian University, and Sapiens won the ‘Academic Book of the Year’ prize at the UK’s Academic Book Trade Awards. In 2017 Homo Deus received Handelsblatt’s German Economic Book Award for ‘the most thoughtful and influential economic book of the year, and in 2015 Sapiens won China’s Wenjin Book Award. Yuval Noah Harari is a two-time winner of the Polonsky Prize for Creativity and Originality, which he was awarded in 2012 and 2009. In 2011 he won the Society for Military History’s Moncado Award for outstanding articles on military history.
Harari lectures around the world on the topics explored in his books, and writes articles for publications such as The Guardian, Financial Times, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist and Nature magazine. In 2020 he wrote and interviewed extensively on the global coronavirus crisis, discussing the pandemic’s implications on major news channels that included CNN and the BBC. Harari also offers his knowledge and time to various organizations and audiences on a voluntary basis.