The Impact of Taglit-Birthright Israel: 2012 Update

The Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies has released their latest report, the third in a series, of the Jewish Futures Project. The study follows 2,000 Jewish young adults who were applicants to Taglit in its early years. The report focuses on participant (6-11 years following their trip) and non-participant applicants from 2001-2006.

As the “Birthright Israel generation” marries and establishes their own families, the reaserchers continue to find that Taglit participants are nearly 50% more likely to inmarry, are more highly attached to Israel, and more likely to belong to a Jewish congregation.

Additionally, the study reports,

A great deal of effort is presently being expended to develop follow-up programs for those who participate in Taglit (specifically through Birthright Israel NEXT). In part, the theory is that a ten-day experience is too limited to provide long-term benefits unless additional opportunities are provided for learning and engagement. Follow-up programming for Taglit alumni, as it exists today, began targeting cohorts who participated several years after the respondents included in this study. So although most respondents did not have an opportunity to engage in these programs, the results of the present study do not necessarily mean that such efforts are unnecessary. They may, in fact, enhance the impact of the program and may be important for some groups of participants. What the present results indicate is that there is an independent effect for Taglit, regardless of the nature of the follow-up. As the present program of research evolves, it will be important to understand how engagement affected by post-trip activities.

The complete study is available for download.