The file presents a comprehensive review of various areas of quality of life of Israel’s population – haredi Jews, non-haredi Jews, and Arabs. The data presented provide a glimpse into the uniqueness of each part of the population, thereby contributing to a deeper dialogue from a place of greater familiarity and esteem.
The goal of this project is to conceptualize the happiness-wealth relationship, in an attempt to answer the quasi-philosophical question: What is the quality of life of the population in Israel? The file’s authors built a central index that calculates quality of life in several areas, in the understanding that despite the great diversity in their lifestyles, perspectives, and beliefs, all residents of Israel share an unequivocal common denominator — all seek personal welfare, social harmony and economic growth.
The data presented in the file are spread out over nine chapters that discuss the areas of health, personal welfare and family life, education and schooling, income and economic status, employment, housing, social and community life, personal security and public infrastructures, and environmental quality. The various indices reflect each area from two integrated and complementary angles: their objective condition and their subjective perception. The indicators in each topic were summarized and calculated to reach the value of an aggregate index for each population group reviewed. The relative importance that Israelis ascribe to each area was derived from the data of a special survey conducted by the Haredi Institute for Public Affairs among over 1,000 respondents. The aggregate index is the project’s “bottom line” – with a range of zero to one, the aggregate index of quality of life was 0.64 for haredi Jews, 0.69 for non-haredi Jews, and 0.16 for Arabs.
The file’s authors stress, nonetheless, that the importance of the study lies not only in its wide-angle focus on quality of life, but specifically, due to the extensive detailing of the data presented, which reflect the view that quality of life for every population group is composed of various minutiae, expressing the unique preferences of the individual, in accordance with his personal choices and lifestyle. This data provides a first look at the distinctiveness of each part of the population, thus contributing to deeper dialogue by acquiring familiarity with the different tribes that comprise Israeli society.