Women are underrepresented in the leadership of the Jewish community in the UK, and there is strong (83%) grass-roots support for action to address the shortfall, including 56% backing for the setting of targets and 35% for the introduction of quotas.
These findings emerge from a survey conducted by the Jewish Leadership Council’s Commission on Women in Jewish Leadership, and published on 17 May 2012. A total of 1,636 Jews aged 15 and over completed an online questionnaire hosted by SurveyMonkey in February and March 2012.
The sample was recruited via 66 Jewish communal organizations and via social media channels. It was essentially self-selecting and not weighted to be statistically representative of all UK Jews. In particular, 75% of respondents were women, even though geographically and denominationally they were said to be broadly in line with the profile of the Jewish population.
Nevertheless, treated with caution, the survey does shed some light on attitudes to gender equality in Judaism, with helpful breakdowns of the views of men and women (men in general and male lay leaders in particular were found to be less positive about change). It also includes data about the extent of volunteering, within and beyond the Jewish community. The full report of the survey is available at: