Friday, November 24, 2017

Putting Food on the Table

Omer Yaniv

Data accumulated from the Household Expenditure Survey carried out by the Central Bureau of Statistics show that the average household expenditure in Jerusalem is lower than the national average. In 2015, the average household expenditure in an Israeli household was NIS 15,410 a month, while in Jerusalem the average household expenditure was NIS 13,420 – lower than the average household expenditure in Tel Aviv (NIS 17,710) and higher than the average household expenditure in Haifa (NIS 12,253).

An examination of household expenditure on food (excluding fruits and vegetables) reveals that the average household expenditure on food in Jerusalem (NIS 1,850) is also lower than the national average, which stands at NIS 2,030. In this instance as well the expenditure in Jerusalem is lower than that in Tel Aviv (NIS 2,240), but higher than the household expenditure in Haifa (NIS 1,670). 
The main reason for the high household expenditure on food in Tel Aviv relative to Jerusalem derives from the high expenditure of Tel Aviv residents on meals outside their homes. The survey results show that in 2015 a household in Tel Aviv spent an average of NIS 1,020 a month on meals outside the house, as opposed to only NIS 260 a month spent by a Jerusalem household, and NIS 460 a month by a household in Haifa (while the national average is NIS 440 a month).
When examining the expenditure clauses for the purchase of food products it becomes apparent that Jerusalem households generally spent more than households in Tel Aviv and in Haifa. Jerusalem households usually spent 88% more than households in Tel Aviv, and 72% more than households in Haifa on meat and poultry; about 36% more than in Tel Aviv and 27% more than in Haifa on bread, grains, and baked goods; and about 28% more than households in Tel Aviv and 47% more than Haifa households on fruit and vegetables. However, on alcoholic beverages, Jerusalem households spent 71% less than households in Tel Aviv, and 45% less than households in Haifa.

Household expenses on food products, by main clauses:

Translation:Gilah Kahn

Friday, November 10, 2017

Facing East

Dafna Shemer

When we think of East Jerusalem, we tend to perceive it as a single geographic unit, when in fact East Jerusalem, like West Jerusalem, is constructed of neighborhood after neighborhood, each of which is completely different from the other. The Arab neighborhoods of East Jerusalem are home to approximately 330,000 residents – the population of a major city in Israel.

Jerusalem is most familiar to us from its west side, with its diverse neighborhoods. In order to become a little better acquainted with East Jerusalem, we turned to the socio-economic index published by the Central Bureau of Statistics, so as to create a parallel between the neighborhoods in East Jerusalem and Jerusalem's Jewish neighborhoods.

The socio-economic index, based on the 2008 census, included data for the different neighborhoods. To characterize the neighborhoods in East Jerusalem we rated the Jewish and Palestinian statistical areas (sub-neighborhood units) in the city separately. Two rankings were created, one for West Jerusalem and one for East Jerusalem, and within each the neighborhoods were rated from a high socio-economic level to a low socio-economic level. Next we searched for the matching levels between west and east. Thus, for example, the Jewish neighborhood of Nayot has the highest rating among the neighborhoods in the west of the city and the neighborhood of Bab A-Zahara/the Palestinian American Colony (adjacent to the Old City nearby Damascus Gate and the Rockefeller Museum) is its parallel neighborhood. It should be remembered that this measure is relative, and in the context of the national socio-economic index, Nayot is in cluster 19 (with 20 being the highest) while Bab A-Zahara is in cluster 5. The Armenian Quarter in the Old City and the Katamon neighborhood in West Jerusalem also have the same rating in their separate rankings. It is noteworthy that Katamon contained a majority of Christian residents before the War of Independence.

The parallel data comparison leads to geographic similarities: several of the Palestinian neighborhoods in the northern part of the city had a rating similar to Jewish neighborhoods in the northern part of the city. Shu'afat and Pisgat Ze'ev, Dahiyat a-Salam (east of the Shu'afat refugee camp) and Neve Ya'acov, Beit Hanina and the Ramot neighborhood. In the south as well we found "sister" neighborhoods: Arnona and Beit Safafa and Um Tubba and Kiryat Menahem.

In terms of the values of the socio-economic index, the East Jerusalem neighborhoods are similar to the distinctive haredi neighborhoods in Jerusalem, such as Mea Shearim, Geula, and Sanhedria.

As previously stated, the socio-economic difference between the Jewish and the Palestinian neighborhoods is greater than the similarity between them, and they cannot be effectively compared to each other. At the same time, this type of representation helps one to associate less familiar places with those that are familiar to us. 

Jerusalem's drop in its socio-economic ranking from cluster 4 to cluster 3 provides information about the general situation of the city, but as home to 883,000 people, it is possible and indeed worthwhile to look a little deeper, for although everyone is from Jerusalem, as in most cities, the main thing is the neighborhood where you live.

Translation: Gilah Kahn