Press Releases

JDC-ICCD Releases New 5-Country Survey on European Jewish Attitudes and Trends


Michael Geller / JDC Telephone: (212) 885-0838

Jamie Epstein / JDC Telephone: (212) 885-0849

For Immediate Release

A new research study on Jewish identity and community participation in Central and Eastern Europe identifies trends among Jewish adults in Bulgaria, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, and Romania. Identity à la Carte, a two-year and wide-reaching study, examined views on religious observance, Jewish identity, anti-Semitism, Israel, Jewish knowledge, and organizational affiliation among 1,270 Jews, ages 18-60. The study—a project of the JDC International Center for Community Development—was conducted by leading demographers Andras Kovacs, Barry Kosmin, and Sergio DellaPergola, among others.

Identity à la Carte is an academic triumph that clearly shows how Jews collectively adapt to the new political realities of Central and Eastern Europe,” said Dr. Barry Kosmin, research professor in public policy and law at Trinity College. “It has international scope and provides solid, comparable data on Jewish populations.”

Among the findings, Jewish identity was valued more highly now than in childhood by the majority of the respondents: 81% in Poland, 73% in Hungary, 66% in Bulgaria, 63% in Romania, and 62 % in Latvia. In addition, respondents have long-standing connections with Israel, including high rates of travel to the country, with 85% having traveled to Israel overall and 66% having visited several times.

Respondents also had optimistic views of the Jewish future in Europe, with 46% in Romania; 55% in Poland; 64% in Latvia; 74% in Bulgaria; and 87% in Hungary believing their Jewish community will continue to thrive in the next few decades. Additionally, respondents believe “that Europe today is a safe place for Jews to live,” with: 57% in Latvia; 59% in Poland; 61% in Romania; 67% in Bulgaria; and 77% in Hungary agreeing with that statement.

“It helps to give us a better understanding of our own communities, as well as those that are non-affiliated,” said Luciana Friedman, President of the Jewish Community of Timisoara, Romania. “As applied research, it will inform and enrich our policy and programs.”

To that end, 54% of the overall respondents are self-identified Jews from “mixed families” (with a maximum of two Jewish grandparents): 77% from Poland; 46% percent from Hungary; 67% from Bulgaria; 57% from Romania; and 39% from Latvia. Whereas 46% of overall respondents come from self-identified “homogeneous” families (with 3 or four Jewish grandparents): 22% from Poland; 54% from Hungary; 33% from Bulgaria; 43% from Romania; and 61% from Latvia.

About JDC

The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) is the world’s leading Jewish humanitarian assistance organization. JDC works in more than 70 countries and in Israel to alleviate hunger and hardship, rescue Jews in danger, create lasting connections to Jewish life, and provide immediate relief and long-term development support for victims of natural and man-made disasters.

For more information, please visit

About the JDC International Centre for Community Development

The JDC International Centre for Community Development (JDC-ICCD) is a UK charity foundation created by JDC and based in Oxford University devoted to understanding and analyzing transformations in Europe and their impact on European Jewish communities. To learn more, visit

Subscribe to our RSS feed: Press Releases

An error occurred during your login.


JDC, Cookies, and Your Privacy

Cookies are small pieces of information sent by our web server for storage on your computer, to be retrieved when you return to this site. We use cookies to allow you faster, more convenient access, and to prevent you from being required to log in on every page of our sites.

For more information on JDC’s use of cookies, read our Privacy Policy.


An Error Occurred


Logging In With One of Your Social Web Site Logins

Instead of trying to remember a bunch of special username/password combinations to log in to different web sites that you visit, you can now link your account on this web site to your account on one (or more) of the social media web sites shown and log in with the same username/password combination that you use on that social web site to log in to our site.

To provide this connection in a secure manner, we use Gigya, a social network connection provider that works behind the scenes to make safe, secure connections between user accounts on different systems, such as popular social media web sites like Facebook and web sites like ours where you are actively involved in social issues and causes.

Each time you log in, Gigya uses special application programming interfaces (APIs) to establish the connection between the sites and validate your username and password. Neither our web site or Gigya receive or store your social network passwords.

In addition to reducing the number of logins you have to remember, connecting your accounts can make it quicker and easier to share an activity or cause you feel passionately about from our web site with your friends on your social web sites.

You can break the connection between your accounts at any time.