Published: Still Playing by the Rules - Index on Jewish-Arab...

Published: Still Playing by the Rules - Index on Jewish-Arab Relations in Israel 2015

May 1, 2017

The findings of the 2015 survey, “Still Playing by the Rules: Index of Arab-Jewish Relations in Israel” were released in early 2017. The Index, which has been conducted annually since 2003, details and analyzes responses to opinion survey scompleted by Jewish and Arab citizens between March and October 2015. The annual survey allows for analysis of short and long-term trends, measuring attitudes of Jews and Arabs towards one another and the state across 16 different issues.  In addition,  questions are added each year based on regional developments. In 2015, participants were also asked about the Joint List (the unified political party comprised of the various Arab and one Jewish-Arab political parties), the 2015 Knesset campaign and elections, and Operation Protective Edge.   


Overall, while the 2015 survey continues to reflect the complexity of attitudes between the populations, “findings point to the sustained infrastructure of Arab-Jewish coexistence in Israel. A majority of both Arabs and Jews believe in a shared society, accept the state in its pre-1967 borders as the arena for their relations, feel that Israel is a good place to live, are committed to democracy as a mechanism for managing their mutual relations and conflicts, and agree that civil equality is the basis for coexistence and an important state goal.” 

Selected findings from the 2015 Index show that:

  • 60.3% of Arab citizens surveyed accept Israel with its Jewish majority and 69.5% of Jews accept Arabs as full members of Israeli society.
  • 60.2% of Arabs personally want to live in Jewish neighborhoods and 54.1% of Jews are prepared for Arabs to live in their neighborhoods.
  • 58.7% of Arabs think that the Jews, just as Arabs have historical and national rights to the land, and 82.4% of Jews agree that Arabs have the right to exist as a national minority with full civil rights.

In comparison: 

  • 25.8% of the Arab citizens surveyed define their identity in Palestinian terms without any reference to Israel and 66.5% of Jews believe that an Arab who identifies himself or herself as a Palestinian in Israel cannot be loyal to the state and its laws.  
  • 41.7% of Arabs support the formation of a Palestinian state in lieu of Israel and 68.6% of Jews regard Israel first and foremost a Jewish state and only then as a democratic state.
  • 24.3% of Arabs refuse to have a Jewish friend and 29.0% of Jews are not willing to work under an Arab superior.

Click here to access the complete Index

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