Apr 7, 2015 7:00 am

Christianity poised to continue its shift from Europe to Africa

The global Christian population has been shifting southward for at least a century and is expected to continue to do so over the next four decades, according to new demographic projections from the Pew Research Center. Overall, the share of Christians in the world is expected to remain flat. But Europe’s share of the the world’s Christians will continue to decline while sub-Saharan Africa’s will increase dramatically.

Nearly half of the world’s Christians already reside in Africa and the Latin America-Caribbean region. By 2050, according to the Pew Research study, those two regions will be home to more than six-in-ten of the world’s followers of Jesus, with just a quarter of Christians living in Europe and North America.

Global Share of Christians by Region, 2010-2050 Read More

Topics: Christians and Christianity, Demographics, Europe, Population Geography, Religious Affiliation, Sub-Saharan Africa

Apr 6, 2015 10:05 am

After 200 years, Native Hawaiians make a comeback

Native Hawaiian Population Makes a Comeback

More than any other state, Hawaii stands out when it comes to its racial and ethnic diversity. The Rainbow State has never had a white majority. In fact, non-Hispanic whites, the largest group in most states, account for only 23% of the population, according to 2013 census figures.

Asians, a category that includes Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai and Filipino immigrants whose ancestors once worked on the islands’ sugar cane and pineapple fields, are collectively the largest group at 37%. Read More

Topics: Demographics, Population Geography, Population Projections, Race and Ethnicity

Apr 6, 2015 7:00 am

From Twitter to Instagram, a different #Ferguson conversation

On social media, hashtags have long been used as a shorthand way of organizing a conversation around an event or topic. One widely used hashtag over the past year is #Ferguson, which started after the police shooting of an unarmed black man in Ferguson, Mo., and has since become a kind of connective tissue for the massive number of social media posts about the event and what it has come to represent.

#Ferguson Used Differently on Twitter and InstagramIn a new analysis of the #Ferguson hashtag on Twitter and Instagram, Pew Research Center has found some striking differences between the two social media platforms in how people use the hashtag and direct the conversation.

On Twitter, which quickly became a source of information about the Michael Brown shooting last August, usage of the hashtag #Ferguson has primarily focused on the discussion about Brown, the ensuing protests and the authorities’ response. Read More

Topics: Internet Activities, Race and Ethnicity, Social Media

Apr 3, 2015 7:00 am

Why people with no religion are projected to decline as a share of the world’s population

For years, the percentage of Americans who do not identify with any religion has been rising, a trend similar to what has been happening in much of Europe (including the United Kingdom). Despite this trend, in coming decades, the global share of religiously unaffiliated people is expected to fall, according to the Pew Research Center’s new study on the future of world religion.


To be clear, the total number of religiously unaffiliated people (which includes atheists, agnostics and those who say they have no particular religion on censuses and surveys) is expected to rise, from 1.1 billion in 2010 to 1.2 billion in 2050. But this growth is projected to occur at the same time that other religious groups – and the global population overall – are growing faster. Read More

Topics: Population Projections, Religious Affiliation, Religiously Unaffiliated

Apr 2, 2015 9:55 am

7 key changes in the global religious landscape

What will the world’s religious landscape look like a few decades from now? A new Pew Research Center study attempts to answer that question by projecting the changing size of eight major global religious groups through the year 2050 based on a variety of demographic factors.

The study uses data from 198 countries and territories on fertility, age composition and life expectancy. It also looks at rates of religious switching – where data is available – and migration between countries, and puts all of these factors together to provide the best estimates for the future.

There are many storylines in this data, which can be explored through the full report or on our interactive Global Religious Futures website. Here are a few of the key findings: Read More

Topics: Buddhists and Buddhism, Christians and Christianity, Demographics, Hindus and Hinduism, Muslims and Islam, Population Projections, Religious Affiliation, Religiously Unaffiliated

Apr 2, 2015 7:00 am

What we learned about surveying with mobile apps

This week marks a new experimental milestone for Pew Research Center: We’ve released our first report using survey findings collected with mobile software applications, or “apps.”

The rise of apps in an increasingly mobile world is a major social, political and economic story that we have been documenting for years. As researchers, we’ve felt for some time that apps hold a lot of promise for data collection. Not only could apps-based surveys potentially make surveys more “mobile friendly,” but they might also allow people to provide different kinds of information that is sometimes difficult to gather in traditional phone surveys, such as location data or exactly when people use certain smartphone features.

Yet little work has been done by social science researchers examining whether apps are a viable survey tool. And we were unable to find any research comparing app-based surveys with polls administered through Web browsers. We used an app that enabled people to take our surveys on their smartphone or tablet, even when the phone is not connected to the internet. We also allowed people to take the survey using any Web browser, including a smartphone, tablet, laptop or desktop, but that required an internet connection. Our new, experimental work compared the results of these two modes, and what we found is fascinating.

Here’s what we did: Read More

Topics: Internet Activities, Mobile, Research Methodology

Apr 1, 2015 1:58 pm

Working-mom guilt? Many dads feel it too

A recent study, published in the April 2015 issue of the Journal of Marriage and Family, suggests that kids’ academic and emotional well-being is not necessarily contingent on the amount of time they spend with their mothers. The takeaway for some commentators: It’s time for busy moms to let go of the guilt they feel about not spending enough time with their kids.

Among Working Parents, Fathers More Conflicted About Time Spent with KidsIt turns out today’s working fathers are just as likely as working mothers to say that finding the right balance between their job and their family life is a challenge for them, Pew Research Center has found. Fully half of working dads say it’s difficult for them to balance these competing responsibilities; 56% of working moms say the same. And about the same share of working dads (34%) and moms (40%) say they “always feel rushed” in their day-to-day lives.

Read More

Topics: Parenthood, Work and Employment

Apr 1, 2015 9:52 am

6 facts about Americans and their smartphones

Smartphones have become an important way for Americans to communicate, go online, and access and share information. A new Pew Research Center report analyzes smartphone ownership and the attitudes and behaviors of smartphone owners, as well as how these mobile devices have become a primary way for some users to access the internet.

Here are six key findings from the report:

Smartphone Ownership Highest Among Young Adults, Those With High Income/Education Levels1The share of Americans who own a smartphone has substantially increased since 2011, when Pew Research first began examining smartphone adoption. Today, nearly two-thirds (64%) of U.S. adults own a smartphone, up from 35% in 2011. Younger adults as well as those who are more affluent and have higher levels of education are among the most likely groups to own a smartphone.

2Some smartphone owners – particularly younger adults, minorities and lower-income Americans – depend on their smartphone for internet access. Of U.S. adults who own a smartphone, 7% are “smartphone-dependent,” meaning that they do not have home broadband service and have limited options for going online other than their mobile device. Young adults, ages 18-29, are more likely (15%) than other age groups to be smartphone-dependent, while Latinos (13%) and African Americans (12%) are more heavily dependent on their smartphone for internet access than are whites (4%). Lower-income Americans also rely heavily on smartphones for going online – 13% of U.S. adults with an annual household income of less than $30,000 are smartphone-dependent, compared with 1% of those whose family household income is $75,000 or more. Read More

Category: 5 Facts

Topics: Internet Activities, Mobile, Technology Adoption

Mar 31, 2015 12:01 pm

Working while pregnant is much more common than it used to be

The U.S. Supreme Court last week revived a previously dismissed case that looks at whether, and under what circumstances, employers should provide accommodations to pregnant employees who are “similar in their ability or inability to work” to other employees with other medical conditions.

The case involves Peggy Young, who filed a discrimination lawsuit against UPS, her former employer. Young, who at the time worked as a part-time driver, was told to avoid heavy lifting while pregnant. UPS refused to give her lighter duties and placed her on unpaid leave. In 2008, she sued, citing the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978.

Women More Likely to Work While PregnantYoung’s situation of working while pregnant is much more common today than it was before the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. Among women who had their first child in the early 1960s, just 44% worked at all during pregnancy. The likelihood that an American woman would work while pregnant increased dramatically through the 1960s and 1970s, and by the late 1980s, 67% of women pregnant with their first child remained on the job. Those rates have leveled off since then, and the latest figures show that 66% of mothers who gave birth to their first child between 2006 and 2008 worked during their pregnancy, according to Census Bureau data. Read More

Topics: Parenthood, Work and Employment

Mar 30, 2015 2:02 pm

Among developed nations, Americans’ tax bills are below average

US Americans pay less in taxes than Europeans
With the April 15 tax-filing deadline rapidly approaching, some U.S. taxpayers may be thinking a lot about just how much they are forking over to (or getting from) Uncle Sam. A Pew Research Center report earlier this month concluded that the public sees the nation’s tax system as deeply flawed: 59% of people surveyed agreed that “there is so much wrong with the federal tax system that Congress should completely change it,” while just 38% said the system “works pretty well” and requires “only minor changes.” Read More

Topics: Taxes