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Research Spotlight

Can Intermarriage Lead to an Increase in the Number of Jews in America?

November 2015

Hopeful arguments to that effect have been proffered since the Pew survey two years ago. They’re wrong.

Could intermarriage be good for Jewish continuity? Could it actually lead to an increase in the numbers of American Jews, even committed and involved American Jews? Such an argument—which flies in the face of conventional wisdom—wasput forth by the social scientist Theodore Sasson two years ago, based on his analysis of data in the latest Pew Center survey of American Jewry. What led him to this conclusion was the surprisingly high number of under-thirty offspring of intermarried parents who identify themselves as Jews.

The thinking goes like this: given the high rate of intermarriage, we should naturally expect a diminution in the overall size of the Jewish population as children of such marriages tend increasingly to identify themselves as something other than Jews. But what would happen if half or more of these children identify themselves specifically as Jews?

The arithmetic is straightforward:...

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The Joint Conference on Jewish Education

The Network for Research in Jewish Education, and

The Association for the Social Scientific Study of Jewry

Towson University, Baltimore, Maryland

June 14-16, 2016


The Network for Research in Jewish Education (NRJE) and the Association for the Social Scientific Study of Jewry (ASSJ) are sponsoring a Joint Conference on Jewish Education. It will be held at Towson University in Baltimore on June 14-16, 2016. The conference will feature papers and discussions across the full range of issues in Jewish education, but will also include a significant component on the social scientific study of Jewish education. The program will encompass the academic study of Jewish education, including matters of particular interest to scholars, practitioners, policy makers and philanthropists.

Submission and Review Process

Members in good standing of the NRJE or the ASSJ are invited to submit proposals to present. All proposals must be received by January 25, 2016. To become a member of either organization or to renew your membership, please follow the directions on theNRJE website, or the ASSJ website.  Proposals should be 500-700 words.


Each proposal for the conference requires the completion of an online submission form. Applicants will be notified concerning acceptance by March 28, 2016. Please read the description of the various presentation formats, below. Any additional questions about proposals or the review process can be sent to the Conference Chair, Prof. Sylvia Barack Fishman.

Presentation Formats

Proposals can be submitted for complete sessions constructed around either papers or roundtables (preferable), or for individual papers or consultations. Please indicate your preference for format. In some cases the Program Committee and Chair may determine that a different format than the one proposed would be most appropriate for a presentation.

Papers: Presentations of Completed/Nearly Completed Work

Papers can either be submitted as part of a panel (preferable) or individually. Regardless, each paper must be submitted by its author through the online form. Please indicate if your submission should be considered as part of a proposed panel.  The Conference Committee will put together individually submitted paper proposals to create panels where quality and thematic consistency apply. Paper presenters should draw on completed or nearly completed—but not published—research. Each presenter will have no more than 20 minutes, to allow time for questions and conversation.

Spotlight Sessions: Open Dialogue about Major Issues

Presentation Format: Spotlight Sessions are intended to spark dialogue and broaden thinking on key issues in Jewish education and Jewish education research. Spotlight Session conveners are encouraged to think broadly and inclusively about both issues and participants. By design, these sessions should be constructed with interactivity at their core, and they may include presentations, experiential learning activities, or discussion. Proposals for Spotlight sessions must include a description of the particular topic at issue as well as the names of participants in the session.

Roundtables: Presentation of Multiple Perspectives on a Single Topic

Presentation Format: Roundtables are designed to create discussions that fall somewhere between the discussion-based format of the Spotlight Session, and the more presentational style of the Paper Presentation Panels. Roundtables offer the opportunity for experts to engage in high-level, research-based discussions of a specific issue, concern, or question. Proposals for Roundtables must include a description of the particular topic at issue as well as the names of participants in the session.

Consultations: Conversation on Initial Ideas or Works in Progress

Presentation Format: This format allows for presenters to consult with peers and mentors about works in progress, ideas in the initial stage of formation, or research that is still in progress. Proposals for consultations should offer as much detail as possible about the project at issue, its current stage of development, and the specific kinds of insight and input you are seeking.


Featured Publications

After Pew: Thinking about American Jewish cohesion, assimilation and division

Laurence A. Kotler-Berkowitz | October 2015

» More Featured Publications

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