Data culled for policy studies is critical to fully understand the subject matter, but when it comes to data concerning haredim there are many problems – both sociological and methodological – that impede obtaining an accurate, clear picture.
Thus, it is difficult to give a conclusive definition as to who is haredi; there is a lack of awareness as to the sub-cultures and diversity within the haredi community; survey samples are only partially representative and have inherent cultural biases; and more.
Topics such as “poverty,” “welfare,” “employment” or “health,” necessitate a broad data infrastructure. However, cultural biases evident in how questions are phrased call into question the validity of the data obtained, and the sample size influences the ability to perform advanced segmentation.
The problem doesn’t stop there. Interpretation of the data’s significance necessitates a deep familiarity with the different streams within the haredi community and the processes taking place therein.
The Institute is presently developing data collection tools that are adapted culturally, methodologically and sociologically to the research and policy needs of the haredi community, and aims to serve as an address for those wishing to understand the sociological implications of the data.