Eran Hakim combines social activism with academic research on how social institutions and inequality are connected. He served previously as the chair of the Tel Aviv University Junior Academic Staff Association and was a key activist in the struggle for public housing in 2010–2012, before and during the period of the social protest. His MA thesis focused on the connections between marital patterns, especially marital age, and marriage between people with a similar level of education, which perpetuates social inequality. At the same time he also studied the connection between the characteristics of thesis supervision in the universities and the nature and frequency of sexual harassment in these institutions. He is writing his doctoral dissertation about the connection between social rejection in schools and the nature of schools. In addition to studying the links between institutions and inequality, Hakim is interested in studying the relations between Jews and Arabs and between Jews and Arabness in Israel. As part of his doctoral research on schools he also examined the identity work of Arab children in a public Jewish school. He is also conducting a study into changes in Mizrahi music listening patterns in Israel.
Since 2012 Hakim has headed the Path to an Equal Israel project at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute. This project brings together people with different views from the areas of politics, the media, social activism, and civil society in Israel. The project’s aim is to develop comprehensive thinking about the possibility of a more equal Israel, and the focus is on analyzing the obstacles to achieving this aim. One of the striking and unique characteristics of the Equal Israel group is its variety. The participants come from many social groups in Jewish-Israeli society: ultra-Orthodox, secular, settler, Mizrahi, Ashkenazi, different socioeconomic classes, men and women. Another characteristic of the participants is their activism in their own fields on behalf of change. Among the participants are an ultra-Orthodox man who promotes equality within ultra-Orthodox society and the abolition of discrimination against Mizrahi pupils in ultra-Orthodox schools; a settler who promotes protection of the rights of Palestinians and of settlers; a secular Jew who is critical of the fundamental assumptions of the secular society from which he comes. Since 2013, Hakim has also participated in the discussion group titled The Jews of the East, Orientalism, and Modern Awareness, headed by Prof. Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin.