INTERREGIONAL INEQUALITIES IN ISRAEL:

1948-1995 POPULATION AND HOUSING CENSUS DATA

 

Boris A. Portnov and Evyatar Erell

 

The publication presents a model of regional inequality, which attempts to explain the spatial distribution of different income groups in the population. The model is applied in a study of the spatial aspects of socio-economic development in Israel, using data from five successive censuses of population and housing conducted in 1948, 1961, 1972, 1983 and 1995. The analysis indicates that the extent of interregional disparities in Israel differs according to the type of inequality index used. Indices of population distribution and wealth show greater interregional disparities than indices of education and employment. Most indicators of welfare and population distribution reflect increasing interregional disparities over time. By contrast, the values of variables related to education and housing tend to converge, indicating a reduction in inequality. Trends in socio-economic development also differ within regions. Development in the core region of Israel has become more uniform over time, whereas the socio-economic development in the country's peripheral regions manifests increasing polarization.