2018 Annual Conference of the Haredi Institute for Public Affairs

2018 Annual Conference of the Haredi Institute for Public Affairs

The Second Annual Conference of the Haredi Institute for Public Affairs was centered on bringing to light the Quality of Life among Israel’s Population Groups – a comparitive study conducted at the Institute by Nitsa (Kaliner) Kasir and Dmitri Romanov.

Hour 08:30
Location Shalva Center, 1 Shalva Road, Jerusalem
Audience All

Opening Remarks

Professor Yoram Margalioth, senior fellow at the Institute, who chaired the conference, briefly presented the Institute’s worldview, noting that the Institute represents all the sectors comprising Israeli society, with the goal of maximizing the welfare of all the residents of the State of Israel.
Founder and Chairman of the Institute Eli Paley spoke about the Institute’s extensive activities, noting that the Institute is now in its forth year of operation, and the importance of the Quality of Life project – the central theme of the conference.  Paley welcomed the President who attended the conference, noting that the principles underpinning the Institute’s activities are in line with the vision of the “four tribes” which the President often speaks about at various occasions. Study authors Nitsa (Kaliner) Kasir and Dmitri Romanov presented the President with the study publication.
President of Israel Reuven (Ruby) Rivlin commended the Institute’s chairman and the study authors. He emphasized the importance of the study, stating that “there is special significance to the Quality of Life project, whose conclusions we have gathered here today to discuss. The interesting upshot of this Quality of Life project is that each tribe has its own quality of life index. As the study authors have written, and I quote, ‘There is a need to formulate courses of action and develop dialogue channels whereby these issues can be raised for joint discussion, while giving voice to the different needs of each and every part of the population.’ We can certainly maintain a society comprised of different communities that are able to live with one another… I am sure that ultimately our joint need to maintain a healthy society will prevail.”
The opening session concluded with Deputy Chair of the Institute Nitsa (Kaliner) Kasir presenting the methodology employed in this project. She presented the various areas chosen as representative of quality of life, the objective and subjective indicators that were assessed, and the salient findings emerging from the study and the “bottom line” of each population group’s quality of life.
Dr. Dmitri Romanov, who partnered in conducting the research, presented the research findings on the economic situation of haredi households, which indicate that on the one hand the poverty rate in haredi households is high relative to the general population, yet on the other hand that haredi households are able to maintain a balanced budget. Additional data illustrate the ways they’re able to maintain a budgetary balance despite economic hardship, namely, by maintaining balanced expenditure, communal assistance, long-term planning and more.
Assaf Tsachor-Shai, senior researcher at the institute, presented data culled from two studies conducted at the Institute concerning the high rate of donations found in haredi society, and the perception of volunteerism which is underpinned by a commitment to mitzvah observance and a sense of community.
 Director-General of the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs Dr. Avigdor Kaplan commended the collaboration between the Ministry, the Haredi Institute and the study authors, and presented the Ministry’s policies on issues concerning the haredi community including efforts to raise the employment rate.
  • Panel on Volunteerism and Community:  Aid Organizations A panel discussion on volunteerism and community aid organizations in the haredi community, was moderated by the Institute’s board member and Acting Mayor of Jerusalem Yitzhak Pindrus. Pindrus introduced the panel by presenting data from the study that highlight the gap between the high poverty rate in the haredi community and the perception of poverty, which is low and comparable in scope to that of the general population.


Second Session – Health

The second session, focused on health, was introduced by Deputy Chair of the Institute Nitsa (Kaliner) Kasir, who conducted the study. Kasir presented data indicating that the life expectancy in haredi cities is relatively high, as well as additional data indicating a high perceived health status, and maintaining of a healthy lifestyle. However, the rate of early detection tests in the haredi community are relatively low, and the rate of forgoing medical treatment and dental care due to financial constraints is high.

A panel was held with hospital directors who responded to the research findings presented and provided a broad perspective on health issues, preventive medicine and pregnancy and birth in the haredi sector.

The session concluded with Professor Avraham Steinberg, who gave a comprehensive overview of preventive medicine from a Jewish philosophical and halachic perspective.


Interview with Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked


Third Session – Employment and Professional Training 

Professor Eugene Kandel, CEO of Start-Up Nation Central and former chairman of the National Economic Council, presented data illustrating the need to find solutions for suitable high-tech training for haredim.
Dr. Dmitri Romanov, fellow at the Institute, presented data showing that over half of haredi men do in fact work, as well as data indicating that their basic skills are comparable on average to the level in the general population (with the exception of problem-solving in an ICT environment). At the same time, the hourly wage is relatively lower, and the rate of part-time work is high among men and women.
Following that, other studies and projects undertaken by the Institute were presented:  a study on part-time employment among haredi women, conducted by Dr. Shlomit Shahino-Kesler together with Deputy Chair of the Institute Nitsa (Kaliner) Kasir and Assaf Tsachor-Shai; a project on adapting training programs in fields relevant to today’s job market for haredi seminaries, which the Institute has undertaken in collaboration with community officials; and a project on adapting high-tech training for the haredi community.

לרצף סרטונים של כל הרצאות הכנס

סרטון עם הצילום המלא של הכנס


For the full study in Hebrew:

איכות החיים של אוכלוסיות בחברה הישראלית: מבט השוואתי – ניצה (קלינר) קסיר ודמיטרי רומנוב

For Volume II – Data Graphs & Charts:

איכות חיים של אוכלוסיות בחברה הישראלית – מבט השוואתי, חלק ב: לוחות נתונים ותרשימים – ניצה (קלינר) קסיר, דמיטרי רומנוב

For the full study in English:

Quality of Life Among Israel’s Population Groups – Nitsa (Kaliner) Kasir and Dmitri Romanov

For selected graphs from the study in Hebrew:

תרשימים נבחרים של איכות החיים של אוכלוסיות בחברה הישראלית, מבט השוואתי – ניצה (קלינר) קסיר ודמיטרי רומנוב

Updated Index for 2019:

מדד איכות החיים 2019 – ניצה (קלינר) קסיר, דמיטרי רומנוב, אסף צחור-שי שקד אדר, צחי בן-שימול ונעם מרשה

וידאו: שיא לייב

Photo Credit: Eli Cobin

The Conference reported in the Media:

The Second Annual Conference of the Haredi Institute for Public Affairs was centered on bringing to light the Quality of Life among Israel’s Population Groups – a study conducted at the Institute by Nitsa (Kaliner) Kasir and Dmitri Romanov. This project constitutes a first-ever, systematic formulation of quality of life indicators for the three population groups comprising Israel’s multifaceted society – haredim, non-haredi Jews, and Arabs. The individuals belonging to these population groups differ in many respects, but they have an indisputable common denominator: they all care about personal well-being, social harmony and economic welfare.

The conference was held on May 23, 2018 at the Shalva Center in Jerusalem. In attendance were the President of Israel, the Minister of Justice, and officials from several government offices as well as professionals engaged with the study of haredi society. Hundreds of people attended a variety of fascinating lectures, gleaning much information from the Institute’s fields of research.


קרדיט צילום : אלי קובין 

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