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Unitarian Universalists in the United States 1990 2008
Name: Unitarian Universalists in the United States 1990 2008
Pages: 15
Year: 2012
Language: English
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Unitarian Universalists in the United States 1990 2008: Socio demographic Trends and Religious Patterns Contents Methodological Note ..............................................................................................................................i Part I Population .................................................................................................................................1 A. Population Size & Geography ......................................................................................1 Part II Vital Statistics ..........................................................................................................................2 A. Gender...........................................................................................................................2 B. Age..................................................................................................................................2 C. Marital Status................................................................................................................3 D. Race & Ethnicity............................................................................................................4 Part III Social & Demographic Patterns ...............................................................................................5 A. Education.......................................................................................................................5 B. Economics.....................................................................................................................6 C. Politics............................................................................................................................7 Part IV Religious Belief & Behavior.......................................................................................................8 A. Religious Secular Outlook ...........................................................................................9 B. Belief about God ........................................................................................................10 C. Membership in a Congregation..................................................................................10 D. Religious Switching ....................................................................................................10 E. Religious Mixing .........................................................................................................11 $NRXP POH $XPORUV "B""BBB..................................................................................................................12


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i Unitarian Universalists in the United States 1990 2008: Socio demographic Trends and Religious Patterns The American Religious identification Survey (ARIS) 2008 is the third in a landmark time series of large, nationally representative surveys that track changes in the religious loyalties of the U.S. adult population within the 48 contiguous states from 1990 to 2008. The 2001 and 2008 surveys are replicas of the 1990 survey, and are led by the same academic research team using an identical methodology of random digit dialed telephone interviews (RDD) and the same unprompted, open HQGHG NH TXHVPLRQ JOMP LV RXU UHOLJLRQ LI MQ\" HQPHUYLHRHUV GLG QRP SURPSP RU RIIHU M VXJJHVPHG list of potential answers. Moreover, the self description of respondents was not based on whether established religious bodies or institutions considered them to be members. To the contrary, the surveys sought to determine whether the respondents regarded themselves as adherents of a religious community. The surveys tap subjective rather than objective standards of religious identification. The key religion question is part of an inquiry that also probes a range of socio demographic, political, social, and life cycle issues as well as attitudes that add richness to the main findings. These UHVSRQVHV UHYHMO POH QMPLRQ V SMPPHUQ RI UHOLJLRXV NHOLHIV NHOMYLRUV MQG NHORQJLQJB 7OH $5H6 2008 survey was carried out from February through November 2008 and collected answers from 54,461 respondents who were questioned in English or Spanish. ARIS 2001 interviewed 50,281 respondents and the 1990 NSRI interviewed 113,713 respondents. The huge number of cases in these surveys provides unparalleled, in depth profiles of the social make up of religious groups and detailed geographical coverage with a high degree of statistical precision and a standard error of under 0.5 percent for the full sample in 2008. Respondents who identified as Unitarian Universalists numbered 351 in 1990, 182 in 2001 and 192 in 2008. The population and socio demographic data presented are restricted to a comparison of 1990 and 2008 in order to offer meaningful and clear findings and analysis of trends over two decades. The 1990 and 2001 studies were fully analyzed and reported in One Nation under God: Religion in Contemporary American Society (1993) and Religion in a Free Market: Religious and Non Religious Americans (2006).1 1 Barry A. Kosmin and Seymour P. Lachman, One Nation under God: Religion in Contemporary American Society, New York, Harmony Press, 1993; Barry A. Kosmin and Ariela Keysar, Religion in a Free Market: Religious and Non Religious Americans, Ithaca, N.Y., Paramount Market Publishing, 2006. Methodological Note


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1 Unitarian Universalists in the United States 1990 2008: Socio demographic Trends and Religious Patterns ARIS estimates that the Unitarian Universalist identifying (UUA) adult population was 463,000 in 1990 and 586,000 in 2008. This represents an increase of 123,000 adherents or 27%. This growth is similar to the total U.S. population growth of 30%over this time period. This is not the only way in which the UUA adherents mirror the larger U.S. population. The UUA has historical roots in the Northeast, especially in New England. Thus, the regional distribution bias in 1990 shown in Table 1 is not unexpected: about a quarter of all UAA adherents lived in the Northeast even if a plurality in the West was already evident. By 2008 the proportion of UUA adherents in the West was even greater. The corollary of the concentration in the West is under representation in the South. Though, even if the UUA is under represented in the South, there is also a minor increase in adherence in the region, suggesting that the UUA have similar patterns of migration to the sunbelt as the U.S. population: moving from the Northeast and Midwest to the West and South. Part I A. POPULATION SIZE & GEOGRAPHY POPULATION Table 1. UUA Adult Population by region 1990 & 2008 1990 2008 UUA Percent UUA USA UUA Percent UUA USA Total 463,000 100 175,440,000 586,000 100 228,182,000 Northeast 121,000 26 21% 111,000 19 18% Midwest 106,000 23 24% 101,000 17 22% South 99,000 21 35% 139,000 24 37% West 138,000 30 20% 236,000 40 23%


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2 Unitarian Universalists in the United States 1990 2008: Socio demographic Trends and Religious Patterns The gender composition of the total adult U.S. population had a slight bias towards women (52 women to 48 men) in 1990 and in 2008. UAA adherents, like most religious groups in the U.S., has a marked female bias. Still, the proportion of women to men among UUA adherents narrowed over the two decades from 62% women to 38% men in 1990 to 59% women to 41% men in 2008. A. GENDER The median age of U.S. adults in 1990 was 40 years and it increased to 44 years in 2008, showing a pattern of aging among the general U.S. population. The median age of the UUA shows that it is aging at a faster pace. In 1990 the median age of UUA adherents was 44 years. By 2008 the AAU median age increased to 52 years, 8 years older than the median U.S. adult in the same year. Figure 1 presents the UUA population by three age categories in 1990 and 2008. The most important finding is that the older segment of the population, those over the age of 55 years, have increased from just under one third in 1990 to nearly half of the UUA adherents (47%) in 2008. B. AGE Table 2. UUA Percentage Gender Distribution 1990 & 2008 1990 2008 UUA USA UUA USA % Male 38 48 41 48 % Female 62 52 59 52 Part II VITAL STATISTICS 13 11 26 21 51 42 44 47 32 47 28 30 4 0 2 2 0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100% 1990 2008 1990 2008 UUA USA Figure 1. Age Distribution UUA & USA, 1990 2008 18 2930 5455+REFUSED


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6 Unitarian Universalists in the United States 1990 2008: Socio demographic Trends and Religious Patterns The household income distribution of the UUA population shown in Table 3 reflects their high level of educational attainment. In 1990 65% of UUA households earned over $25,000 compared to 50% of U.S. households. In 2008 54% of UUA households and 42% of U.S. households earned over $50,000. The general affluence of the UUA population is also evident in a high level of home ownership: 78% in 1990 and 81% in 2008. B. ECONOMICS Table 3. UUA & USA Household Income & Homeownership Patterns 1990 & 2008 1990 2008 UUA USA UUA USA INCOME % Under $25,000/$50,000 27 41 39 47 % Over $25,000/$50,000 65 50 54 42 Refused 8 9 7 11 HOMEOWNERSHIP % Owns home 78 73 81 71 % Rents 22 27 18 27 The pattern of employment of UUA adherents was very similar to the national pattern in 1990 but as Figure 5 shows it had more retirees and part time workers by 2008. It also diverged from the national pattern by having fewer students and unemployed persons in 2008. This employment pat tern reflects the overall age and class profile the population. 53 42 53 47 13 17 12 12 19 27 17 17 6 3 9 7 3 1 3 4 3 3 4 6 3 7 2 7 0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100% 1990 2008 1990 2008 UUA USA Figure 5. Employment Status UUA & USA, 1990 2008 FULL TIMEPART TIMERETIREDHOUSEWIFESTUDENTUNEMPLOYEDOTHER


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7 Unitarian Universalists in the United States 1990 2008: Socio demographic Trends and Religious Patterns C. POLITICS As might be expected given their educational and economic profile, UUA adherents are more likely to register to vote than other Americans. 90% reported being registered compared to the national average of 76% in 2008, this question was not asked in 1990. UUA adherents also differ from the general U.S. population in political party preference. As Figure 5 shows UUA adherents are much more likely to identify as Democrats than the general U.S. population. In 1990, 42% of UUA adherents and 35% of Americans identified with the Democratic Party. In 2008 UUA adherents were almost twice as likely as the U.S. population to prefer the Democratic Party (64% to 33%, respectively). Moreover, whereas in 1990 the ratio of Democrats to 5HSXNOL MQV MPRQJ 88$ MGOHUHQPV RMV 2 1 N 2008 POLV UMPLR LQ UHMVHG PR 11 1B 7ORXJO POH 88$ V partisan split is more skewed than among the U.S. population, they have similar proportions of self proclaimed independents. 18 6 29 24 42 64 35 33 37 30 29 31 3 0 7 12 0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100% 1990 2008 1990 2008 UUA USA Figure 6. Politcal Party Preference UUA & USA, 1990 2008 REPUBLICANDEMOCRATICINDEPENDENTOTHER


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