The Geography of the Anglo-Jewish Population in the Twenty First Century: Characteristics, Spatial Distribution, Comparisons, and Trends
Topics: Main Topic: Demography and Migration, Demography, Geography, Jewish Neighbourhoods, Statistics
Abstract: This thesis presents an investigation into the population geography of Jewish residents of England and Wales in the twenty-first century. The aims of the study are to understand the spatial distribution of the group; identify whether there are distinct differences between groupings in different parts of the country; identify whether the demographics and nature of these groups is changing over time; and to examine whether the pattern for Jews is similar to those for other minority groups of comparable size. Most importantly, the thesis theorises what the patterns found may mean for the demographic future of Anglo-Jewry. The results provide a clearer foundation for organisations responsible for the social welfare of Jewish groups in various parts of the country. In addition, as Jews have been present in Britain in significant numbers for longer than other minority groups, it provides useful insights into future trajectories for more-recently arrived groups. Thus, the findings provide an improved basis for policy formulation by the public authorities with wider responsibilities for combating disadvantage and improving social cohesion. Building on an understanding of the history of Jewish settlement in Britain, and existing demographic studies, the analysis presented takes advantage of the inclusion of a question on religion in the 2001 and 2011 censuses. The principal data sources are census outputs, including Special Migration Statistics, individual microdata, and the Longitudinal Study. The analysis investigates the heterogeneity of the group through the development of a novel geodemographic classification methodology that addresses weaknesses in other approaches and the particular needs of small, unevenly distributed sub-populations. It finds evidence of seven distinct classes, with a strong spatial clustering to their distribution. The spatial distribution of Anglo-Jewry is examined in the context of other minority groups, including previously under-studied Arabs and Sikhs; that analysis finds a strong commonality to the pattern for Jews and some other small groups – their trajectories demonstrating a tension between the benefits of group congregation (apparently driven by religion, even in sub-populations defined by ethnic group) and a desire for suburbanisation. It also identifies the strong impact of geographic scale when drawing conclusions based on distribution indices. The underlying drivers of internal migration, an important contributor to changes in spatial distribution, are examined using logistic regression, having first legitimated the use of (post-move) census-derived characteristics in migration analysis. The assessment finds a broad consistency in underlying determinants of migration and, for the Jewish group, an absence of a group penalty inhibiting the propensity to move home, present for other small groups. The patterns of recent internal migration are analysed using spatial interaction modelling and multi-nominal logistic regression; longer term (1971 onwards) patterns are also examined. Based on these analyses, and allowing for potential future patterns of births and longevity, population trends found through an innovative application of the 2011-based geodemographic analysis to 2001 census data are extrapolated to produce estimates of the Jewish population of England and Wales for future decades. The novel approach used takes account of group heterogeneity and absence of group-specific fertility and mortality data. The projection demonstrates an increasing Jewish population, in contrast to the reduction seen during the second half of the twentieth century, but with a growing proportion being found in strictly orthodox enclaves, which gives rise to a number of societal and policy implications.