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Lundi 2 Décembre 2013

The Global Youth 2013 report

The Global Youth in an Age of Uncertainty

In turbulent times like these, knowing your future consumers, citizens and employees is more important than ever.

We at the international consultancy Kairos Future decided to repeat our successful Global Youth study in June 2013. We interviewed 6,500 youngsters in the age group 16-29 in 11 countries around the globe. The study provides a comprehensive picture of the future citizens, consumers and employees.

It is a global study that provides the ability to compare different countries, and in some cases the development of specific questions with our earlier study Global Youth 2007.

Global youth 2013 combines the dreams of youth’s life as a whole, worries and engagement with specific knowledge of young people's consumption behavior, use of new technologies, employment preferences, etc.


For more than two decades we have followed the values, aspirations and attitudes of young people. Starting at the end of the 1980s with surveys of young Swedes, we expanded the scope to the Nordic region in the early 2000s, and conducted our first truly global study in 2006/2007 when we interviewed 23,000 of the young and middle-aged, from 17 countries around the globe, in our first Global Youth study. During the last five years we have followed up by mining hundreds of millions of blogs, microblogs and forum posts in more than 15 countries, hunting for the unknown unknowns in the fields of youth values, attitudes and lifestyles.

And over the years we’ve published numerous books, written hundreds of reports, and given thousands and thousands of presentations on various aspects of youth, work, consumption, lifestyle and society. During this period, we at first witnessed a steady trend of increased individualism, post-materialism and striving for self-expression. However, in the late 2000s we saw the trend bending. The youngest generations were no longer the ones with the most extreme values; the ”extremists” were still the now 30 year-olds, born around 1980. We primarily identified this new pattern in our Swedish longitudinal studies, but gradually reports from other countries began to strengthen our hypothesis. Something new was about to happen, something that this year’s Global Youth study confirms.


The reasons why we’ve been so interested in young people’s views are three-fold. Firstly, of course, young people’s values and attitudes are important per se, since the young are employees, students, consumers and citizens. Secondly, it is the youth that set the trends in society; what young people do today, older generations tend to do tomorrow, simply because it is the young, fresh generation that usually experiment with new technology, music and behaviors. Finally, and possibly most important, young people’s values provide a glimpse of the future, since we tend to stick to the values we acquire during our formative years. Naturally, as life moves on we cannot express our aspirations as we once did. Starting a family, for instance, puts restrictions on what you can do. And as society changes, so too the priorities of generations alter. But these do not mean that you abandon your most fundamental values and ideals. This value consistency is the main reason generations and not only age groups differ in terms of values, attitudes and lifestyles. So we are proud to present a glimpse of the present through the eyes of the young, and a sneak peek of the future through the aspirations of today’s Global Youth.

Mats Lindgren, CEO, Kairos Future

You can download the Global Youth 2013 report, below (PDF 36 pages):


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