Daily Israel Report

2009: Women More Educated, Live Longer

Women in Israel are more educated than men, work less, and live longer. Average Israeli woman has 3 children, compared to 1.6 among European women.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 3/4/2010, 5:51 PM / Last Update: 3/4/2010, 7:37 PM

Women in Israel are, on average, more educated than their male counterparts, and have a higher life expectancy, according to data from the year 2009 released Thursday in honor of International Women's Day. The average woman in Israel lives to the age of 83, while the average man lives to the age of 79.1.

More than 55 percent of undergraduate students in Israel are women. Among those studying for their masters degree, the percent rises to 58.1. Women are more likely than men to pursue a doctorate as well: 52.8 percent of students learning toward a Ph.D are female.

The data also showed that women in 2009 Israel were more likely than ever before to work as managers or in high-tech. 29.6 percent of managers are now women, compared to 16 percent in 1990. 88,500 Israeli women work in high-tech, where they make up 35.6 percent of the total number of high-tech workers.

Women were less likely than men to participate in the workforce. 51.9 percent of Israeli women age 15 and up were part of the workforce in 2009, compared to 61.6 percent of men in the same age bracket. 63.6 percent of women in the workforce were employed full-time (35 hours a week or more), compared to 86.7 percent of men.

Less women than men despaired of finding a job. 19,000 women stopped looking for work in 2009 and dropped out of the workforce, while more than 25,400 men did the same.

First marriage age rises
42,321 women married for the first time in 2009. The average age of a first-time bride was 24.8. The average age of a woman's first marriage has risen over the course of the past generation: in 1995 the average Israeli woman married at the age of 23.4, while in 1980 the average age at which women first married was 22.4.

Jewish and Christian women married, on average, at ages 25.6 and 24.9 respectively. Muslim and Druze women married at the average age of 21.9 and 22.5 respectively. Women in all sectors married, on average, at a younger age than their European counterparts. In 2009 Europe, the average woman marrying for the first time was 28.1 years old.

The average age of women giving birth to their first child in 2009 was 27. Thirty-eight percent of women were mothers to children aged 17 or under. Israeli women had a higher total fertility rate than their counterparts in the European Union or OECD, with the average Israeli woman giving birth to three children over the course of her life, as opposed to 1.6 in Europe.