Dynamics of internal migration determinants for American Jews, 1985-1990 and 1995-2000

Uzi Rebhun*, Sidney Goldstein

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


This paper examines how individual characteristics and structural factors have changed in determining Jewish internal migration in the U.S. between 1985-1990 and 1995-2000. Multinomial logistic regression analysis of the 1990 and 2000 National Jewish Population Surveys shows that socio-demographic characteristics have both increased their power to explain variation in 5-year migration and have become more similar for intra- and interstate migration. Further analysis added migration status at the beginning-of-period, state context of residence characteristics, and ethnic concentration to the explanatory variables. Results from logistic regression analysis, which was limited to interstate mobility, were very much in accordance with the observations of the single-level analysis of the socio-demographic variables. Additional findings suggest that previous mobility increases subsequent interstate migration; that per capita income does not have a meaningful effect on migration; that unemployment encourages migration (yet later this relationship turned negative); and that warm climate deters migration. The importance of ethnic concentration has weakened over time albeit maintained statistically significant. Finally, when the two surveys were integrated into one data set, "time" enhances the tendency of Jews to migrate. The results are discussed in the context of ethnic diversity in contemporary America.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)143-167
Number of pages25
JournalPopulation Research and Policy Review
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2009


  • Internal migration
  • Jews
  • Logistic regression
  • Multinomial logistic regression
  • United States


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