Achieving high vaccination rates is important for overcoming an epidemic. This study investigates the association between religious faith and intentions to become vaccinated against COVID-19 in Israel and Japan. Most of Israel’s population is monotheistic, whereas most Japanese are unaffiliated with any religion. Therefore, our findings might be applicable to various countries that differ in their religions and levels of religiosity. We conducted almost identical large-scale surveys four times in Israel and five times in Japan from March to June 2020 to obtain panel data. We found that intentions of getting vaccinated depend on people’s level of religiosity in a non-linear way. Those who have strong religious beliefs are less likely to become vaccinated than those who say they are less religious. Two other factors that play a role in this relationship are religious denomination in Israel and identifying with a religion in Japan.
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© 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.