Prof. Ira M. Sheskin

Prof. Ira M. Sheskin is associate professor of geography and regional studies and director of the Jewish Demography Project of the Sue and Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Judaic Studies at the University of Miami. Prof. Sheskin has been a member of the National Technical Advisory Committee of United Jewish Communities, which completed both the 1990 and 2000 National Jewish Population Surveys.

Publications by Prof. Ira M. Sheskin

Elderly Jews: An Increasing Priority for the American Jewish Community?

The American Jewish community is rapidly aging. The absolute number of elderly Jews more than doubled from 1957 to 2000, reaching more than a million persons. Data are presented on Jewish elderly from both the 2000-01 National Jewish Population Survey and local Jewish community studies that are useful to Jewish community planners in prioritizing services for the Jewish elderly in an environment of both increasing numbers of elderly and increasing needs in other areas of Jewish communal concern. Read More »

Local Jewish Community Studies as Planning Tools for the American Jewish Community

More than 50 American Jewish Federations completed local Jewish community studies from 1993 to 2008. The principal purpose of this paper is to illustrate the utility of these studies. Part I cites examples of how the results of these studies have been utilized to guide Jewish community decision-making at the national and local levels. Part II forwards a series of additional arguments in support of completing local Jewish community studies. Read More »

Four Questions about American Jewish Demography

How many Jews live in the United States? Is the number increasing or decreasing? Do more Jews live in Israel or in the United States? And do the answers to these questions matter? The controversy surrounding these issues stems from the existence of various definitions of Jewish identity as well as the methodological difficulties involved in estimating Jewish populations. It is likely that somewhere between 5.2 million and 6.4 million Jews live in the United States, with the most probable range b Read More »