The Pew data are best seen as a starting point for future research, as they raise a host of interesting questions. Answering these questions could help determine priorities for philanthropic investment. For example, when Jewish parents say they are not raising their children as Jews, what do they mean? Is this a comment on Jewish education, home life or something else? How do their children see themselves? And what implications do the answers to these questions have for families? Are those who consider themselves Jews Not By Religion (JNBR) similar to teens who refer to themselves as “just Jewish” as a way of eschewing denominational identification? How did the JNBR come to identify in this way? And what does it mean to them? Note that these questions cannot be answered with a socio-demographic survey. Rather, they need a qualitative approach that invites people to express personal meaning.
Amy L. Sales, “Give a Boy a Hammer”, eJewish Philanthropy (3 August 2014) [http://ejewishphilanthropy.com/give-a-boy-a-hammer]