Israel’s Largest Social Issue: Very Low Productivity Level
Next to their security issues, biggest social issues in Israel is their low productivity level. In this context, it’s referring to the amount of work that the average person does in Israel on an individual basis. The country has been lagging behind the rest of the world in productivity for about 40 years. What’s worse is that they have all the means necessary to catch up. They have universities and medical schools just about as good if not better than most other countries. It just seems as if their population is not utilizing them the way they should.
While it may sound as if they’re being deliberately lazy, it’s really because Israel is currently two countries in one. One, unfortunately, is receiving the bulk of the resources while the other is not. Prof. Ben-David proposes that the best way to remedy this is to put the emphasis on improving the education systems first. He stated that the Haredi education system is one of the worst in the world when it comes to meeting economic standards. In the U.S., generally, the less education you have, the less of a chance you have at moving up the career ladder. The same is true for Israel.
Another thing that has not been helping is that Israel’s tax and welfare systems are also not effective in helping to reduce the poverty level. Ben-David believes that some solutions to this are to increase incentives to work and to make sure that everyone has access to the tools and education to do so. Israel also does not currently have second chance programs for completing secondary school. They also do not currently have proper vocational and skills training programs needed to work and be properly productive on the job.