EU Survey of anti-Semitism Gets Under Way, in First Study of Its Kind

Study spanning nine European countries seeks to assist governments and policy makers in taking measures to protect rights of Jewish people.

An EU-sponsored research project got under way this week, with a study that seeks to improve the way national governments and policy makers combat anti-Semitism.

The project, commissioned by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights, will collect data from Jewish people on their experiences and perceptions of anti-Semitism.

According to the FRA, this is the first survey of its kind that asks Jewish people across nine European Union member states about their perceptions and experiences of anti-Semitism. Jews from Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Romania, Sweden and the United Kingdom will be included in the survey.

"The ways in which [anti-Semitism] manifests itself vary according to time and place, and it affects Jews living in the EU in different ways," said Ioannis Dimitrakopoulos, Head of Department, Equality and Citizen’s Rights at the FRA.

According to the FRA, "The existing data in EU Member States on the nature, extent and, in particular, the effects of anti-Semitism on Jewish people are patchy and not comparable".

Dimitrakopoulos said the current survey seeks to collect reliable and comparable data that will "assist EU institutions and national governments in taking the necessary measures that will ensure that the rights of Jewish people are fully respected, protected and fulfilled across the EU".

The survey is being conducted by the UK-based Institute for Jewish Policy Research in partnership with Ipsos MORI, and is designed to provide data that will enable the EU, national governments and European Jewish organizations to tackle anti-Semitism, according to Jonathan Boyd, Executive Director of JPR Institute for Jewish Policy Research.

Results of the survey will be published in 2013.