Israel's Religiously Divided Society Data Set

Data Archive > International Surveys and Data > Single Nation Surveys > Summary


Between Oct. 14, 2014, and May 21, 2015, Pew Research Center, with generous funding from The Pew Charitable Trusts and the Neubauer Family Foundation, completed 5,601 face-to-face interviews with non-institutionalized adults ages 18 and older living in Israel.

The survey sampling plan was based on six districts defined in the 2008 Israeli census. In addition, Jewish residents of West Bank (Judea and Samaria) were included.

The sample includes interviews with 3,789 respondents defined as Jews, 871 Muslims, 468 Christians and 439 Druze. An additional 34 respondents belong to other religions or are religiously unaffiliated. Five groups were oversampled as part of the survey design: Jews living in the West Bank, Haredim, Christian Arabs, Arabs living in East Jerusalem and Druze.

Interviews were conducted under the direction of Public Opinion and Marketing Research of Israel (PORI). Surveys were administered through face-to-face, paper and pencil interviews conducted at the respondent’s place of residence. Sampling was conducted through a multi-stage stratified area probability sampling design based on national population data available through the Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics’ 2008 census.

The questionnaire was designed by Pew Research Center staff in consultation with subject matter experts and advisers to the project. The questionnaire was translated into Hebrew, Russian and Arabic, independently verified by professional linguists conversant in regional dialects and pretested prior to fieldwork.

The questionnaire was divided into four sections. All respondents who took the survey in Russian or Hebrew were branched into the Jewish questionnaire (Questionnaire A). Arabic-speaking respondents were branched into the Muslim (Questionnaire B), Christian (Questionnaire C) or Druze questionnaire (D) based on their response to the religious identification question. For the full question wording and exact order of questions, please see the questionnaire.

Note that not all respondents who took the questionnaire in Hebrew or Russian are classified as Jews in this study. For further details on how respondents were classified as Jews, Muslims, Christians and Druze in the study, please see sidebar in the report titled “How Religious are Defined”

Following fieldwork, survey performance was assessed by comparing the results for key demographic variables with population statistics available through the census. Data were weighted to account for different probabilities of selection among respondents. Where appropriate, data also were weighted through an iterative procedure to more closely align the samples with official population figures for gender, age and education. The reported margins of sampling error and the statistical tests of significance used in the analysis take into account the design effects due to weighting and sample design.

In addition to sampling error and other practical difficulties, one should bear in mind that question wording also can have an impact on the findings of opinion polls.

Data File
Cases: 5,601
Variables: 234
Weight Variable: FINAL_WEIGHT
Weighting:
As a result of oversamples of respondents in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, the unweighted sample has more respondents belonging to these groups than would normally occur in a nationally representative sample. However, the oversampled religious groups and the higher number of respondents in the West Bank and East Jerusalem do not represent a disproportionately large share of the final, weighted sample that was used for analysis. The oversamples were addressed through statistical adjustment, or weighting, to ensure that Jews and Arabs, along with the various groups that were oversampled, are represented in their proper proportions in the weighted estimates.
Because the Jewish and Arab samples were drawn separately, the weighting also was done separately for each group. The two subsamples were then combined in the third stage of the weighting process. Overall, three different stages of weighting were needed to account for the oversamples and to bring the samples in line with national characteristics of the Jewish and Arab adult populations in Israel.
Step one:
In the first step, a design weight corrects for the oversamples of PSUs in certain regions and with particular demographic characteristics. The design weight takes into account the probabilities of selection of PSUs from within a stratum, selection of households in a PSU and selection of an adult within a contacted household. Respondents living in areas that were oversampled were weighted down due to the fact that they had a higher chance to be interviewed. In addition, respondents residing in households with fewer adults were weighted down because they have a higher probability of being selected than people residing in households with many adults.
For the Jewish sample, the base sample and oversamples were merged and weighted with a single design weight. The same approach was employed for the Arab base sample and oversamples. The design weights for the Jewish and Arab samples corrected the disproportional regional design in each sample and also balanced the samples with respect to the distribution of religious subgroups within each group.
Step two:
In the second step, a post-stratification weight was created for the Jewish and Arab samples separately. A raking technique was used, which adjusts the characteristics of respondents to match known characteristics of the target population for gender, age, region and education. All population characteristics are based on the latest population estimates as published by the Central Bureau of Statistics of Israel.
The Jewish sample was weighted by an interlocking weight of gender and region (West Bank, not West Bank) as well as an interlocking weight of age and region. The sample was also weighted by education and region to match the characteristics of Jews overall in Israel. This weighting approach adjusts the demographic profile of the West Bank sample separately from the full Jewish sample.
Given the lack of parameters for the different Jewish religious subgroups, the sample could not be weighted for age, gender, education or region for the Haredi subsample or any of the other Jewish religious groups. Nonetheless, the sample looks reasonably similar to the demographic breakdowns for the religious subgroups among Jews in the Israel Social Survey.
In the Arab sample, interlocking weights of the three religious groups – Muslims, Christians, Druze – were used along with age, gender and region to adjust the sample. In addition, the Arab sample was weighted on education for the general Arab population in Israel. This weighting approach adjusts the demographic profile separately for each of the religious subgroups among the Arab sample.
Step three:
In the third step, the Jewish and Arab samples were combined and a post-stratification weight was created to match the demographic profile of the national sample to known characteristics of the Israeli population. The full sample was weighted by region and by an interlocking weight of religion and ethnicity (Jews, including non-Jews but not Arabs; Arab Muslims; Arab Christians; and Arab Druze). The other demographics for the combined sample – age, gender, education – were all within acceptable limits and weighting was not necessary.
Data Collection
Date Collected: Oct. 14, 2014-May 21, 2015
Original Survey (Instrument)
Pew Research Center 2015 Israel Survey Codebook
Funded By
Produced by The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life with support from the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Neubauer Family Foundation.
Collection Procedures
Interviews were conducted between Oct. 14, 2014 and May 21 2015 under the direction of Public Opinion and Marketing Research of Israel (PORI). Surveys were administered through face-to-face, paper and pencil interviews conducted at the respondent’s place of residence. Sampling was conducted through a multi-stage stratified area probability sampling design based on national population data available through the Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics’ 2008 census.
Sampling Procedures
The survey sampling plan was based on six districts defined in the 2008 Israeli census. In addition, Jewish residents of West Bank (Judea and Samaria) were included.

The sample includes interviews with 3,789 respondents defined as Jews, 871 Muslims, 468 Christians and 439 Druze. An additional 34 respondents belong to other religions or are religiously unaffiliated. Five groups were oversampled as part of the survey design: Jews living in the West Bank, Haredim, Christian Arabs, Arabs living in East Jerusalem and Druze.
Principal Investigators
Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.

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