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Glossary (State of Israel)




A place that is regularly populated and meets the conditions in accordance with the decision of the government and the planning institutions., 2019

Locality – A permanently inhabited place that meets the following criteria:
a. It is usually inhabited by 40 or more adult residents;
b. It has self-administration;
c. It is not included within the municipal boundaries of another locality;
d. Its establishment was approved by the planning institutions., 2021

There are the following classifications,

  • Nationality classifications

    • Jewish locality

    • Arab locality

    • Mixed locality

  • Municipal classifications

    • Local council

      • Municipality (i.e., city). Refers to one local authority only, which has received the status of a municipality., 2021

      • Non-municipality (i.e., town). A local authority of one locality only, which has not received the status of a municipality., 2021

    • Regional council (i.e., villages). Includes several rural localities. Sometimes, urban localities are also included, e.g., Qesaryya (included in the regional council Hof HaKarmel), Kefar Habad (included in the regional council Emek Lod). Some of these urban localities are later granted the status of a local council. Included in regional councils are localities which have a representative on the council, as well as localities that are within the municipal jurisdiction of the council but are not represented on it., 2021

    • No municipal status. There are localities with no municipal status, i. e., located in an area that does not belong to any municipal authority., 2021

    • Change in status. The municipal status of a locality may change over the years. A local council may receive the status of a municipality, a locality within a regional council may receive the status of a local council, and it is even possible for a locality to transfer from one regional council to another., 2021

  • Rural/urban classifications

    • Urban locality

    • Rural locality

      • Moshav

      • Collective moshav

      • Kibbutz

      • Institutional locality

      • Communal locality

      • Other rural locality

  • Non-localities

    • Place

    • Bedouin tribes


Populations living outside localities also include the populations of places, of Bedouin tribes, and the populations of prisons located outside the municipal area of the locality., 2021

There are the following classiciation

Locality code

The locality coding system (a 4 digit-code assigned to each locality in Israel) was created in the 1950s by the Ministry of Interior and is maintained today by the Population and Immigration Authority, mainly to aid in the computerized operations of the Population Register system and in the recording of the addresses of the residents in Israel. The system is dynamic and is updated in coordination with the CBS., 2021

Jewish/Non-Jewish locality

Localities are classified as Jewish or non-Jewish according to the majority population in the locality. In most localities, there is a large majority either of Jews or of Arabs., 2019

Mixed locality

A mixed locality is a locality with a significant majority of Jewish residents and a minority of Arab residents.
The mixed localities include eight urban localities (Jerusalem, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Haifa, Akko, Ramla, Lod, Ma’alot-Tarshiha and Nazerat Illit) and one rural locality (Neve Shalom)., 2019

Urban locality

Urban localities include all localities with 2,000 or more residents, and are classified by size groups., 2021

In Israel, the definition of locality as urban is based on a single criteria – population of 2,000 inhabitants and over. In recent decades, this criteria has led to a situation where rural localities were redefined as urban localities just by going through a period of population growth. The population growth has occurred as a result of suburbanization process, the annexation of community neighborhoods by Moshavim and Kibbutzim, the settling of immigrants from the former U.S.S.R and natural increase. In many instances, the only major change which occurred in the locality is population growth without the additional transformation of urban characteristics such as changes in the landscape or society.

Rural locality

Rural localities include all localities with fewer than 2,000 residents, and are sub-divided as follows: moshav; collective moshav; kibbutz; communal locality; other rural locality., 2021


A rural locality organized as a cooperative society, which has the right to agricultural farm land (as defined by the Israel Land Administration). These localities consist of family units, each of which is an independent economic entity. Part of the production and economic administration is carried out by the cooperative association, the degree of cooperation being determined by the, 2021

Collective moshav

A rural collective locality where production and marketing are collective and consumption is private., 2021


A collective rural locality where production, marketing, and consumption are collective., 2021

Institutional locality

An institution that has the characteristics of a locality and is not located within the municipal boundaries of another locality., 2021

Communal locality

A locality organized as a cooperative society, which has no right to agricultural farm land, and where the extent of cooperative activities (production, consumption, municipal and social activities) is determined by the members., 2021

Other rural locality

A locality with less than 2,000 residents, which is not included in any of the categories described above., 2021


A new area that has begun to be populated, but still does not meet the criteria for being defined as a locality, or an area that was once a locality and was removed from the list of localities., 2021

Bedouin Tribe

The Bedouin tribes are not included in the count of localities, although they are listed in the File of Localities published by the CBS each year. The Bedouin tribe population is included in the summary tables of the population living outside localities., 2021

Economic Territory

The State of Israel uses the term economic territory to refer to Israel proper, a.k.a. federal Israel, meaning the 1948 borders plus annexed areas. This is based on the following definition by the OECD-SNA,

The economic territory of a country consists of the geographic territory administered by a government within which persons, goods and capital circulate freely. ... According to this definition, the economic territory of the State of Israel refers to … the districts and sub-districts [that] are defined according to the official administrative division of the State of Israel, which includes 6 districts and 15 sub-districts. Including Israeli localities in the Judea and Samaria Area., 2021

Urban areas