The Changing Perspectives of Young Canadians

Every generation has its share of opportunities and challenges. Generation Y (or the Millennials) has grown up surrounded with an excess of technology and devices with access to information at their fingertips. While these unprecedented amounts of new technology and information provide unique opportunities compared to previous generations, Generation Y also face high levels of youth unemployment and stagnant economic conditions for the foreseeable future.

Ipsos Reid has been conducting youth research since the mid 1990’s to understand how the views of young Canadians have shifted over time. We thought our clients and partners would be interested in asking today’s young Canadians (currently 18 to 26 years old) a few of the same questions that we first asked the youth cohort of 1997. Below are two significant findings from the study that paint a picture of young Canadians today.

Young Canadians are more frustrated with how their life is going

Frustration levels are rising substantially which is likely driven by diminishing job prospects, an increasing need for higher levels of education, and the subsequent delay in young adults launching independent lives with families of their own. Using a 0 to 10 scale, “strongly agree” representing those responding 8, 9 and 10 and “strongly disagree” representing those responding 0, 1 and 2, we asked “I feel frustrated by the way my life is going right now”:

Frustrated

Young Canadians are less likely to say they take pride in being Canadian

Young Canadians today have considerably less pride in being Canadian than youth in 1997. Whether being Canadian has lost some of its luster, or if greater awareness of the rest of the world through travel, education and the Internet has given young people a wider point of comparison, the results are striking. Using a 0 to 10 scale, “strongly agree” representing those responding 8, 9 and 10 and “strongly disagree” representing those responding 0, 1 and 2, we asked “I am very proud to be Canadian”:

Patriotism

 For full results, please download the latest point of view paper “The Changing Perspectives of Young Canadians”.