Statistical Report on Ultra-Orthodox Society in Israel


Social Mobility

Chap. 6

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In the current report we are focusing on mobility along several dimensions of employment. The Central Bureau of Statistics’ Social Survey shows that, in terms of employment, the mobility of ultra-Orthodox Jews is lower than that of other Jews in Israel. This relates to increases in salary, advancement at work, and being awarded greater authority in the workplace. However, the largest gaps in these areas are between ultra-Orthodox men and other men. By contrast, almost no difference was found between ultra-Orthodox women and other women, and thus– with regards to social mobility– gender is a more important factor than population group.

Figure 13. Given Greater Authority at Work (between 2008-2018, %)

Some specific examples: The percentage of ultra-Orthodox women who were given greater authority at work (31%) is very close to that of other Jewish women (34%). By contrast, only 23% of ultra-Orthodox men were given greater authority at work, versus 34% of other Jewish men. In addition, the impact of having children on employment rates among ultra-Orthodox women is less dramatic than in the past, and is now similar to that among other Jewish women.

There are large gaps between the ultra-Orthodox and other Jews regarding the factors they consider to affect an individual’s social status. Ultra-Orthodox respondents believe that the individual has only limited control over his or her fate, and that Divine Providence is the most important factor influencing one’s social status, while other respondents do not consider this factor to have much importance. In parallel, the ultra-Orthodox attribute less importance to factors such as education, financial situation, or profession. Another difference emerged regarding the question of whether ultra-Orthodox Israelis should benefit from affirmative action in higher education or employment: An overwhelming majority of ultra-Orthodox respondents are in favor, while only a minority of other Jewish respondents feels that the ultra-Orthodox should benefit from affirmative action.

Figure 14: An Individual’s Social Status is Predetermined, by Divine Providence, by Population Group, 2018 (% in agreement)

Figure 15: The Ultra-Orthodox Should Benefit from Affirmative Action in Employment or Studies (% in agreement)

** The Statistical Report on Ultra-Orthodox Society in Israel is based on data from the Central Bureau of Statistics, government ministries and authorities, and the National Insurance Institute.