Spotlight on Jewish startups

04 March, 2009
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Jumpstart Research Report 2.09 - Key Findings from The 2008 Survey of New Jewish OrganizationsWe’ve had a busy few weeks, and as our first post to the official Jumpstart blog we’d like to invite a discussion about the recent release of our first Research Report, Key Findings from the 2008 Survey of New Jewish Organizations

Jumpstart partnered with The Natan Fund and The Samuel Bronfman Foundation for this first of its kind study of the Jewish startup sector. A conversation about the key findings from the report has already sprung up on a number of blogs and other news outlets. 

eJewishPhilanthropy’s Dan Brown previewed the survey’s findings, noting startups are “transforming our communal landscape” and highlighting Los Angeles’s growing prominence as a center for Jewish innovation (Jewish Startups: LA’s Increasing Role,  Jewish LA in the Spotlight).

Tamar Synder at The Jewish Week offered that “While startups are more vulnerable — they’re younger and in many cases haven’t built up large reserves of cash to get them through hard times — they’re also more adaptable” (Start And Stop For Jewish Startups?). 

Esther Kustanowitz tweeted in realtime and then blogged after at My Urban Kvetch about Jumpstart’s presentation of the key findings at the LA Federation, where she compared institutional resistance to change with “GVH (graft-vs.-host) disease, when a transplant patient’s body treats the transplanted tissue as enemy cells and begins destroying the very organ that may have been its salvation” (Jumpstart’s New Jewish Organizations Survey: Tweeting and Reflecting). 

Bob Golfarb gave his reaction to Jumpstart’s suggestion that the new startups represent a Jewish communal form of the “Long Tail” phenomenon by asking “Is that the case with new Jewish organizations? Or are there simply a great many small organizations that show up as a long tail on a graph, without any special economic efficiencies resulting from new media?” (Survey of New Jewish Organizations – A Response) posted at 

Jacob Berkman, writting at JTA’s philanthropy blog The Fundermentalist gave a rundown of reactions to the study (New study looks at new Jewish nonprofits). 

Capping an eventful first week, The Chronicle of Philanthropy‘s Ben Gose highlighted the study’s findings for the secular nonprofit world, noting especially the diversity of the people involved in Jewish startups, from the relatively unconnected to the deeply involved, all seeking options they had not found in established Jewish institutions  (New Jewish Charities Have Attracted Diverse Clients, Study Finds). 

Overall the response has been encouraging and informative. As we consider potential policy recommendations and other next steps, we really do hope to hear additional comments, reactions, and feedback from as wide a range of stakeholders as possible (see, and please fill, comments box below).  

To receive updates about the survey project, including new findings, additional analysis, and policy recommendations, as well as other news about Jumpstart and its work, please sign up for the Jumpstart Email List and indicate your interest in “Jewish Startup Survey.”

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