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December 18, 2014 / 26 Kislev, 5775
 
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Posts Tagged ‘survey’

Survey Finds Opening for Israeli Advocacy in Non-Western Countries

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

A BBC Sponsored Public Opinion Survey by the Globespan group has found openings for Israeli PR in the non-Western World.

The survey, conducted annually for the BBC, asked 24,090 people from 16 countries to rate countries from “mostly negative” to “mostly positive” on a scale. While Israel itself was rated, no one from the state of Israel was asked to rate other countries. Interviews were conducted either by phone or in person, depending on country.

While Israel’s favorability was rated most positive in the United States with 50% of participants viewing Israel very favourably, strong neutral or positive opinions were found in Nigeria (54% favourable), Kenya (49% favourable), India (54% neutral), Japan (52%) and Russia (49%).

As expected, The Islamic world viewed Israel in negative terms, led by Egypt (85% negative) and Indonesia (63%). The view was followed by Europe and Western Countries, with Canada (59%), France (65%), Great Britain (68%), Germany (69%) and Spain (71%) portraying negative viewpoints. The only countries with worse ratings then Israel were Iran, North Korea and Pakistan.

When asked to justify the ratings, citizens around the world viewed Israeli foreign policy (45% of participants) as a controversial factor. In contrast, Jewish traditions and culture were cited as the lead positive factor by participants.

The survey challenges Israel’s traditional Western-centric foreign policy, and finds openings for development of relations with other countries. In 2011, Israel’s main trade partners were with the United States and European countries, followed distantly by the Far East. In addition, Israel traditionally considers the Western bloc to be its closest ally, often relying on the block’s political power for support in bodies such as the United Nations. This survey finds an opening for Israeli advocacy in non-Western countries where Israel is viewed more favourably.

Leading Jewish Demographer Disputes UJA-Federation Study of NY Jews

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

A leading Jewish demographer is disputing the findings of a recent widely cited survey on New York Jewry.

Len Saxe, a demographer at Brandeis University, told the New York Jewish Week that the survey overestimated the number of Orthodox Jews in the city.

He agreed with the finiding that the city’s overall Jewish population has grown.

The survey found that about 1.5 million Jews live in New York City and two surrounding counties, and that about one third of those are Orthodox.

The survey was commissioned by the UJA-Federation of New York and titled “Jewish Community Study of New York: 2011.” It was released last month.

Saxe said that data on the Orthodox clashed with data reported by the Avi Chai Foundation in 2009 on the number of Orthodox children in day schools.

“Key outcomes of the study don’t seem to reconcile with ‘hard,’ non-survey data,” Saxe told The Jewish Week.

Steven M. Cohen, one of the study’s authors, told the Jewish Week that “the main contours of our findings” were correct.

As NYC Jewish Population Grows, Haredim Deny Abusing the Safety Net

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

According to a survey of 5,993 individuals conducted in New York City and a few other locations by the UJA Federation, the Jewish community in NYC is growing, mainly fueled by an increase in the Orthodox and Chasidic community, while the population of the non-Observant is moving further and further away from their Jewish identity.

But the survey also found that intermarriage has fallen from 52 to 22 percent. Also, 40 percent of Jews in NY City say they’re Orthodox, up from 33 percent in 2002. And a full 74 percent of all Jewish children in NYC are Orthodox. Talk amongst yourself.

Jonathan Tobin, in Commentary magazine, gleefully writes that this trend spells the end of liberal Jewish values, to whit, “The assumption that most American Jews will always be secular liberals is a myth that has just been exploded,” he wrote. Another Commentary writer, Seth Mandel, took this a step further and praised the extensive social network in the Haredi and yeshivish communities. Speaking about Gemachs (private loan societies), he writes, “this network goes a long way toward making up for the material sacrifices made by low-income yeshiva households. Some Jewish communities have so many gemachs, they have their own version of the Yellow Pages. ”

Over at the Open Zion blog, Raphael Magarik uses Mandel’s support of the Chasidic community as a cudgel with which to bash in the head of Commentary. After all, the Chasidic community does rely heavily on social safety nets and social networks, which have been the bane of Commentary’s existence (granted, as Irin Carmon writes over at Tablet, it is a simplification).

Magarik, who studied at Yeshivat Maale Gilboa in Israel and the egalitarian Yeshivat Hadar in New York City, notes that Kiryat Joel, NY home of the Satmar Chasidic sect (which was not part of the UJA study, since it is outside New York City) was the poorest town in the entire USA, with the lowest median and per-capita income. Half the residents receive food stamps, one third  is on medicaid and many are relying on federal vouchers to help pay there cost.

“Welfare is, and has been for some time, a crucial ingredient in these communities,” Magarik writes. “While Chasidim take care of their own, they also get taxpayers to take care of them.”

He explains that, like Israeli Haredim, Kiryas Joel’s Chasidim “vote together to secure, for instance, a ‘luxurious 60-bed postnatal maternal care center… built with $10 million in state and federal grants.’”

Incidentally, the Village Administrator of Kiryat Joel, Gedalye Szegedin, was not so fond of  the term “poor.”

“I don’t want to be judgmental,” Szegedin told The New York Times. “I wouldn’t call it a poor community. I would say some are deprived. I would call it a community with a lot of income-related challenges.”

We contacted Rabbi Avi Shafran of Agudath Israel to assess his thoughts on the matter and he replied that Magarik’s comments, to put it politely, were “ungenerous.”

“A less polite person would call them obnoxious,” He said.

“All Americans make choices about priorities and how they wish to live their lives,” He wrote. “Typical Americans’ priorities will usually include economic success at or near the top of the list.  Others, though, will emphasize other things, some bad, some good.

“One citizen, to take an extreme example, might choose to live his or her life in a drug haze, shunning gainful employment in order to indulge in leisure activities,” Rabbi Shafran wrote. “Another may choose to dedicate himself or herself to a higher goal like helping the poor, protecting the environment, the study of the humanities — or the study of Jewish texts — even though those undertakings may not allow for their economic independence. All those citizens, we have decided as a tax-paying electorate, are deserving of a social net if they need it.”

“But to conflate the first person with the second one is the height of absurdity, in fact, of nastiness,” Shafran concluded. ” Mr. Magarik can vote for candidates who oppose the maintenance of a social net.  But to disparage citizens whose ideals have led them to lives that are benefiting from America’s embrace of and concern for all Americans is beyond the pale.”

Israelis Among ‘Most Satisfied’ in Developed World

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

A recent survey of the OECD’s (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) 34 countries suggests that Israelis are enjoying a Scandinavian-level quality of life, with Israel ranking sixth in ‘life satisfaction.’

The site Daily Finance analyzed data compiled by the OECD, examining variables like ‘self-reported good health,’ ‘life expectancy,’ ‘employment rate,’ ‘employees working long hours,’ and ‘educational attainment.’

Israelis are among the healthiest in the developed world, with a low obesity rate (13.8%) and life expectancy of nearly 82 years old. By comparison, the obesity rate in the U.S. – which ranked 11th overall in the survey – is 20% higher than Israel, and has an average life expectancy of 79 years.

In spite of the seemingly-ubiquitous security concerns, 70% of Israelis surveyed reported feeling safe walking home at night, while the homicide rate in Israel is comparable to the OECD average (2.1 murders/100,000 people).

Still, the survey found that Israel ranked 24th in employment rate (with 60% of eligible workforce employed), while of those Israelis that are employed, nearly 20% of work long hours (defined in the survey as working at least 50 hours a week).

Denmark was rated as having the most satisfied citizens in the developed world, followed by Norway, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and Austria. After Israel, Finland, Australia, Canada, and Sweden rounded out the top 10.

 JTA Contributed to this report

Poll: Obama Winning Back Jews

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

Jewish support for President Obama has improved significantly in the last year and a half, according to a new survey by the American Jewish Committee .

Release Monday, the poll shows 61 percent of Jews would vote for Obama, as opposed to 28 percent for Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.

In September, an AJC survey showed President Obama scoring 50 percent of votes, with Romney earning 32 percent.

However, exit polls in 2008 showed Obama winning 78 percent of Jewish votes.

In the latest AJC poll, respondents listed the economy and health care as the most important campaign issues.

Respondents also supported Obama’s treatment of Israel, with 58 percent approving of his management of the US-Israel relationship, up a whopping 18 percent since last September.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also took a leap in approval for his handling of the US-Israel relationship – up to 70 percent from 54 percent in September.

An overwhelming majority – 89% – of AJC poll respondents expressed concern over Iran obtaining nuclear weapons, with 64 percent saying the US should conduct a military strike if all other alternatives fail to thwart Iranian nuclear progress.

The online poll took place March 14-27 and surveyed 1,074 respondents who identified themselves as Jewish. It had a margin of error of 4.8 percentage points.

AJC Survey Shows Jewish Support for Obama Dropping, But Few Favor Romney

Tuesday, May 1st, 2012

A new AJC survey of American Jews shows President Obama would win a majority of the Jewish vote in a contest against Gov. Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee. Obama would gain 61 percent and Romney 28 percent, with 11 percent undecided.

Obama won 78 percent of the Jewish vote in 2008.

The national survey reveals certain indicators of Jewish voting behavior. Probed for the first time, for example, is the link between religious activity (based on frequency of synagogue attendance) and voting behavior:

Among the 14 percent of American Jews who attend religious services one or more times per week, 52 percent would vote for Obama and 34 percent for Romney. By comparison, 67 percent of those who never attend religious services – 31 percent of respondents – would vote for Obama, while 21 percent would vote for Romney.

The survey also found that more Jewish women (67 percent) than men (55 percent) would vote for Obama, while Romney is favored by 34 percent of American Jewish men and 22 percent of women.

The AJC survey also explored Jewish identity and attachment to Israel.

“Our survey confirms a politically active, and yet diverse, American Jewish community that has strong views on the pressing issues confronting the United States,” said AJC Executive Director David Harris.

Asked for the most important issues in deciding their vote, 80 percent of American Jews cite the economy, 57 percent health care, 26 percent national security and 22 percent U.S.-Israel relations.

More than half — 57 percent — approve of the way President Obama is handling the economy. Sixty-two percent of those voters who cite the economy as a top issue in the election prefer Obama to Romney, who would win 28 percent of those voters.

Nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of American Jews who cite health care as a top concern would vote for Obama if the election were held today against Romney, while Romney would win 19 percent of their votes.

But among Jews who are more focused on national security concerns or U.S.-Israel relations, only 42 percent would vote for Obama. Forty-four percent of those who cite national security and 45 percent of those who cite U.S.-Israel relations would vote for Romney.

Almost one in five respondents to the survey identify themselves as Republican (19 percent), more than half as Democrat (52 percent), and about one-quarter as Independent (26 percent).

On the current state of U.S.-Israel relations, 58 percent approve and 40 percent disapprove of President Obama’s handling of the relationship. By comparison, 70 percent approve of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s handling of U.S.-Israel relations and 28 percent disapprove.

Iran’s nuclear program continues to concern American Jews.

89 percent are concerned about the prospect of Iran obtaining nuclear weapons, and 11 percent are not concerned.

If diplomacy and sanctions fail, 64 percent would support, and 34 percent oppose, U.S. military action against Iran, while 75 percent would support, and 25 percent oppose, Israeli military action.

Regardless of how the respondents intend to vote, 60 percent think the Democratic Party is more likely to make the right decision in dealing with Iran’s nuclear program. Thirty-seven percent choose the Republican Party.

On the Arab-Israeli peace process, the survey found that 37 percent think that prospects for peace have decreased since a year ago, 7 percent think they have increased, and 55 percent think prospects for peace have stayed the same.

In a series of questions about relations between American Jews and Israel, the survey found that a majority of U.S. Jews – 59 percent – have never visited Israel, 19 percent visited once, and 21 percent have visited two or more times.

Among those American Jews who have never visited Israel, 48 percent say they have never had the opportunity to go, 32 percent say it is too expensive, 13 percent say they are afraid to go, and 31 percent say they are not interested.

And, nearly nine out of ten (87 percent) of those Jews who never attend religious services have never been to Israel, while only 26 percent of religiously active American Jews (those who attend services at least once a week) have not traveled to Israel.

At the same time, 71 percent of respondents believe that caring about Israel is a very important part of being a Jew.

The AJC survey of 1,074 American Jews was conducted by Knowledge Networks, March 14 – 27, 2012, and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.8 percent. The full survey, selected highlights and methodology are available at www.ajc.org.

Poll: 93% of Israeli Jews Proud to be Israeli, 81% Feel Affinity with Diaspora Jewry

Thursday, April 26th, 2012

An overwhelming majority of Israeli Jews are patriotic and prefer to live in Israel over any other country, according to a poll administered by Israeli daily Israel Hayom in honor of Independence Day.

In response to the question “how proud are you to be Israeli?” 93% of respondents described themselves as “proud,” while 70% said they were “very proud.” Over 80% said they plan on flying an Israeli flag on their homes or cars.

74% of those asked said Israel is a good country to live in. According to Israel Hayom, “those groups most satisfied with life in Israel are people over the age of 55, religious people, and residents of Jerusalem…Among those who said they were dissatisfied with life here, the largest group (around 50%) of respondents, were aged 25-44.”

When asked the more specific question of what they love most about Israel, “20.2% of respondents chose ‘people’ as the thing they love most in Israel. In second place, only a tenth of a percent behind, were nature and the country’s landscape. High marks also went to the sense of shared fate here (16.4%), as well as our national character, 13.1%.”

30% of respondents said the most “Israeli” characteristic is “helping others.” “Shimon Peres” (!) came in second with 21%, followed by “barbecues,” “complaining,” the expression “yallah, bye,” and “Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball.”

In terms of how respondents define themselves, 65% view themselves as Jews first, and then Israelis. 21% consider themselves more Israeli than Jewish.

Israelis’ sense of kinship transcends their geographic borders, as 81% of respondents said they “feel an affinity towards Diaspora Jews.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/israel/poll-93-of-israeli-jews-proud-to-be-israeli-81-feel-affinity-with-diaspora-jewry/2012/04/26/

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