The 2010 Survey of New Jewish Initiatives in Europe

Fall, 2010

Source: The Jewish Ecosystem


Jumpstart partnered with Pears Foundation and ROI to conduct the first-ever survey  of the nonprofit Jewish startup sector in Europe. Although much research has focused on a similar trend in North America, few studies have addressed Europe.The survey sought data on the hundreds of Jewish startups that have been founded in the European community in the last ten years. The survey results reveal the sector's size and reach, and the organizations' funding sources, expenses, structure and governance. The purpose was to learn about the nature and needs of these organizations, with the goal of understanding how best to support the revitalization of Jewish life in Europe.


The survey’s results show that as much as, if not more so, than in North America, there is a European Jewish innovation ecosystem, an interconnected web of leaders and projects taking control of and responsibility for their own Jewish destinies. More than 200 organizations have been founded in the past decade alone, and they represent a €21 million annual economy engaging around 250,000 people. Although this is the first study of its kind to focus on the European Jewish innovation ecosystem and its leaders, there is little doubt that they are the vanguard of Jewish life in Europe, and will be contributing to the global revitalization of Jewish culture that the 21st century promises, both in Europe and around the world.


Here are the reports key findings:

  1. Europe is witnessing a revival of contemporary Jewish life through the emergence of hundreds of new initiatives reaching hundreds of thousands of people.
  2. The vast majority of new Jewish initiatives describe their primary areas of focus as Jewish education, arts and culture, or community building. Inter-group and interreligious relations are a higher priority than diversity issues within the Jewish community.
  3. New European Jewish initiatives connect people across broad differences in age and affiliation.
  4. European Jewish startups are dependent primarily on foundation largesse and grassroots labour to sustain themselves. Although they operate independently of communal structures, they do not have a broad base of individual supporters.
  5. European Jewish startup leaders bring strong educational backgrounds and professional expertise to their ventures.
  6. European Jewish startup leaders are the beneficiaries of significant investments in their educational and professional development, especially Jewish learning and leadership.
  7. European Jewish startup founders and leaders are actively engaged in Jewish life and practice; they tend to affiliate with progressive and secular/cultural forms of Judaism.
Updated: Nov. 17, 2010