A new extensive field study on societal coexistence in Saudi Arabia revealed that Saudis are embracing the idea of religious diversity and integration of other cultures in society.
The research titled 'Coexistence in Saudi society' was conducted by the Department of Studies and Research at the King Abdul Aziz Center for National Dialogue and mainly targeted the cities of Dammam, Hofuf, Al-Mubarraz, Khobar, Medina, Makkah, and Najran.
The survey included the efforts of 114 field researchers who conducted numerous interviews in collaboration with 3,140 members of society over the age of 18 in 59 residential neighborhoods across the kingdom.
Here are the 10 main findings of the latest study on coexistence in Saudi society:
- 95 percent of Saudis respect others who may have different religious beliefs
- Regardless of religion or sect, 95 percent of Saudis wish good for all
- 88 percent of Saudis treat others positively and with respect, even if their points of view differ
- 82 percent believe everyone is free to choose their religious doctrine without being forced
- 61 percent do not have a problem with the existence of places of worship for those with different beliefs
- 91 percent of Saudis seek to spread a culture of tolerance
- 76 percent are willing to exchange views with people of different religions
- 81 percent asserted that they consider others' beliefs as a cultural privacy
- 77 percent of Saudis do not mind employing people of other religions in their own companies
- Interestingly, 55 percent would refuse to become in-laws with someone with a different religious doctrine
Undeniably, together with its growing population which consists mainly of young people under the age of 30, the kingdom's leadership is on a revolutionary journey of change.
Not only have cinemas returned to Saudi Arabia this month, tourists will soon be able to obtain visas to visit the country, women can now attend and watch sporting events in stadiums, and will soon be given their right to drive.
This is all part of Vision 2030, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's blueprint for opening up Saudi Arabia to the modern world.