A Population Study of the Jewish Community of Worcester, 1986

Sponsor(s): Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts, Worcester Jewish Federation

Principal Investigator(s): Gary A. Tobin, Sylvia Barack Fishman

Population Estimates: Approximately 13,400 Jews lived in an estimated 6,000 Jewish HH in Greater Worcester in 1986. An additional 1,400 non-Jewish persons lived in the HH, and were related to the Jewish adult in the household.
Key Findings: In 1986:
  • 72% of respondents were married; 58% of HH included two parents and at least one child.

  • 22% of the total population was at least 65 years old; 29% of all respondents had lived in the Worcester area for their entire life.

  • 3% of HH were single parent households;

  • Jewish connection levels were relatively high: 35% of HH reported congregation membership, 77% of respondents had some Jewish education and a similar percentage of children were enrolled in Jewish education;

  • Three-fourths of all HH attended Seders, a similar percentage lit Chanukah candles, 60% fasted on Yom Kippur, 18% kept kosher within their home;

  • 6% of respondents identified as Orthodox, 29% Conservative, 49% Reform Jewish and 14% Just Jewish;

  • Final section of Main Report compares Worcester to other Jewish community studies completed in the 1980s by Dr. Tobin.
Sample: Main Report methodology summary indicates 530 telephone interviews completed in 1986.

Sample Size: Data file shows 521 respondents, and a total of 1,287 persons in the interviewed households.

Sample Notes: The sampling procedure was a combination of random digit dialing (approximately 100 interviews cited in Report) and 400 from a combined Jewish Community List.

Data weighted; some details in Main Report. "Wtfactor" when used extrapolates to 5,985 respondents/households and 14,903 people in the households - unweighted Ns = 521 respondents and 1,287 people in the data file.

DATA FILE IS AN INDIVIDUAL/PEOPLE DATA FILE. Each case represents a person in the Jewish households of Greater Worcester. "Wtfactor" should be used.

Researchers wanting HH estimates, such as for synagogue membership, should do a subset of Respondents only (N=521 unweighted, 5,985 weighted: "wtfactor"). Those wanting data on all members of the HH, such as an age distribution, should use the weight factor, but include all 1,287 HH members in the analysis.

Study Notes: Data Bank copies of reports have several hand-written notes.


Survey Reports

» Main Report

» Service Delivery Report

» Fundraising and Volunteerism Report

» Summary Report

Documentation, Questionnaires and Frequencies

» Questionnaire

Data Files and Data Definitions

» Zipped SPSS Data File

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