Keith Neuman, Executive Director, Environics Institute
Professor Rhonda Lenton, York University
Professor Robert Brym, University of Toronto
The basic demographics of the Jewish population are captured every ten years through national censuses conducted by Statistics Canada, which document the number who identify as Jewish religiously and/or ethnically, where they live, and their basic characteristics (e.g., age, gender, education). This research does not provide a substantive understanding about Jewish identity, priorities, attitudes and values. This type of information has never been collected among Canadian Jews on a national scale and is becoming increasingly important given the dynamic changes taking place in society generally, and in the Jewish world in particular. It is remarkable that the Canadian Jewish community is one of the least studied in the world, in sharp contrast to that of the USA and the UK.
Canada’s Jewish population has historic roots stretching back to the times of earliest European settlement of this continent. Most of Canada’s urban centres have well-established Jewish communities, and Jews are well represented in the country’s professions, business community, government and cultural circles. Today, Canada’s Jewish population is diverse and consists of numerous distinct religious and cultural communities, and is evolving along with the rest of society. Within the next few years, Canada’s Jewish population may exceed 400,000, which would make it the largest Jewish community outside of Israel and the United States.
The Survey: The Environics Institute for Survey Research, in partnership with Professor Robert Brym (SD Clark Chair of Sociology at the University of Toronto) and Professor Rhonda Lenton (President and Vice-Chancellor, York University) is conducting a landmark national survey of Jews in Canada in 2018. Consistent with the Pew American survey, the Canadian survey will be conducted as live telephone interviews (landline and mobile) with a representative sample of individuals 18 years and older who self-identify as Jewish (by religion, ethnicity or parents’ background). This is the only feasible survey method for effectively sampling a representative sample of the Jewish population within the broader Canadian population-at-large.
UJA Federation of Greater Toronto is a proud sponsor of this landmark survey and we look forward to releasing the results and report to our community as soon as they are available in the fall of 2018.
To read the full project description including the themes it will cover please download the pdf.