Population & Sampling Method

The 2008 Survey of New Jewish Organizations sought to identify U.S.-based Jewish startups founded in 1998 or later with annual budgets of $2 million or less. Approximately 297 such organizations were identified as currently operating; another 12 initiatives were identified whose current status was unclear. Subsequent to the survey's conclusion, another five otherwise eligible initiatives were identified.

Approximately 60% of the sample was identified through lists provided by Bikkurim, the Andrea & Charles Bronfman Philanthropies, The Samuel Bronfman Foundation, BYFI Alumni Venture Fund, Center for Leadership Initiatives / ROI 120, Covenant Foundation, Foundation for Jewish Culture, Hadassah Foundation, JESNA, the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles, the Jewish Venture Philanthropy Fund of LA, Jumpstart, Mechon Hadar, The Natan Fund, Righteous Persons Foundation, Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, Slingshot (21/64), The Steinhardt Foundation for Jewish Life, UJAFederation-NY Commission on Jewish Identity and Renewal, and UpStart Bay Area. Additional respondents were identified through publicly available nonprofit registries, foundation grantee lists, and other lists of Jewish nonprofits.

The following organizations were not included in the survey: schools; camps; "friends of ..." support groups; Jewish & Israel film festivals; most interreligious dialogue groups; and subsidiary initiatives and programs wholly conceived, managed, staffed, and supported by their sponsoring organizations.

More than 400 invitations to complete the survey were emailed in November and December 2008 to organizations identified as most likely to be eligible. 290 respondents began the survey. Respondents were screened out if they self-identified with one or more of the following characteristics: founding before 1995; budget greater than $2.5 million; for-profit enterprise or private business; subsidiary program without autonomous budget & fundraising authority/responsibility. Organizations registered as Canadian or Israeli nonprofits were excluded from the sample as well.

Of the 290 respondents, 230 qualified to be included in the sample; that is, they were founded in 1998 or later and have annual budgets of $2 million or less. This indicates a response rate of 74.4%-77.4% response rate overall (assuming a total eligible population of 297-309). 187 of those 230 respondents completed the entire survey-a response rate of 60.5%-63.0%.

By way of comparison, Guidestar USA's " Seventh Annual GuideStar Nonprofit Survey: Charitable Organizations and the Economy " reports a response rate of 6.8% (2,730 nonprofits responding from 42,784 invitations). Blackbaud's " 2008 State of the Nonprofit Industry Survey " was conducted through "invitations to participate in this online survey ... widely distributed throughout the nonprofit community in the United States and Canada and directly to Blackbaud clients in these areas via industry newsletters and targeted emails"; as such, no response rate is available for the 1,298 respondents. The Council on Foundations's May 2008 survey, " Foundations Support Families Hit by Economic Downturn ," was based on 320 responses to 1,841 email invitations, for a response rate of 17.4%.