Israeli Views of Diaspora Jewry 2014
A Study for the Jewish Media Summit
How do Jews in Israel see their connection with Jews in the Diaspora? In preparation for the first Jewish Media Summit (JMS), IDI's Guttman Center for Surveys conducted a survey of the attitudes of Israeli Jews toward Diaspora Jewry. Key findings of the poll can be found below.
This survey was conducted in partnership with:
The Government Press Office
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs
The Ministry of Jerusalem and Diaspora Affairs
The Ministry of Tourism
The Israel-Diaspora Connection
- Fate: 62% of Israeli Jews believe that Jews in Israel and the Diaspora share a common fate, while 35% disagree.
- Nationality: 60% of Israeli Jews believe that the Jewish people in Israel are a nation separate from the Jews abroad, while 36% disagree with this claim.
- Connection: When asked to choose what defines the primary connection between Jews in Israel and Jews in the Diaspora, a plurality of Israeli Jews selected Jewish culture and tradition (40%), followed by Jewish religious law (18%), Jewish nationality (13%), anti-Semitism (13%), and blood relations/genetics (6%). 7% of respondents believe that all options equally define the primary connection.
Keeping Up with the Diaspora
- Interest in Diaspora Jewry: 81% of Israeli Jews are interested to know what’s happening with Jews in the Diaspora; 18% are not interested.
- Source of Information: Israeli Jews receive the majority of their information regarding Diaspora Jewry from television (56%), the Internet (51%), newspapers (51%), family members or friends abroad (39%), radio (30%), family members or friends in Israel (23%), and their own trips abroad (16%).
Priorities of World Jewry
- When asked to select which of the following issues is most important for world Jewry to make its top priority, a plurality stated combating assimilation in the Diaspora (29%). This was followed by dealing with anti-Semitism (24%), a strong connection to Israel (13%), influencing local politicians on issues related to Israel (9%), the BDS movement (6%), and financial support of Israel (5%). 9% of respondents believe that all of the objectives are of equal importance.
The Government of Israel and the Diaspora
- 71% of Israeli Jews think that the Government of Israel, when making important decisions, should take into consideration how the decision will influence the situation of Jews in the Diaspora, while 26% do not think it is necessary.
- 51% of Israeli Jews think that the Government of Israel, when making important decisions, should take into consideration the viewpoints of Diaspora Jews, while 47% do not think it is necessary.
- When asked to state in which, if any, of the following ways they favor Israeli government support for Jewish communities in the Diaspora, 62% of Israeli Jews favor sending emissaries (shlichim) from Israel, 42% support the physical defense of facilities and people, and 39% back financial support for Jewish communal activities. 10% of respondents oppose support Israeli government support for Diaspora Jewish communities.
Non-Orthodox Religious Movements in Israel
- Status: 51% of Israeli Jews believe that the Conservative and Reform movements in Israel should be given status equal to that of the Orthodox movement in matters of conversion and marriage. 43% do not believe the other Jewish denominations should be given such status.
- Funding: 52% of Israeli Jews oppose allocating government funds to Reform and Conservative communities and rabbis, while 40% support such a move.
- Despite all of the other matters of importance on the agenda of the Israeli government, 91% of Israeli Jews believe that aliyah of Jews from around the world to Israel is an issue of importance. 8% of respondents do not believe that aliyah is an important issue.
This survey was conducted on May 8–11, 2014 and included 477 respondents who constitute a representative sample of the adult Jewish population of Israel. The maximum measurement error for a sample of this size is ±4.6%.