BBC research into attitudes across the generations have thrown up some interesting findings

In case you weren’t aware, millennials are old news. Now, the demographic that you really need to know is Generation Z.

According to the BBC, Generation Z are those aged between 16 and 22, millennials (Gen Y) are between 23 and 37, Gen X is between 38 and 51 and baby boomers are between 52 and 71.

The BBC commissioned Ipsos Mori to conduct extensive research into Gen Z and how their opinions are different to those who are older. Ipsos Mori surveyed 3,007 people – 1,003 from Generation Z, 660 people in Generation Y, 667 in Generation X and 677 baby boomers.

Here are all the key takeouts from the research.

Jobs and children

It turns out that older generations are pretty judgemental of 16 to 22-year-olds. A meagre 1% of Generation X and baby boomers think that having kids is important to Gen Z, with more thinking that they’d prefer to be on TV or famous.

Compare this to Gen Z themselves: 17% think having kids is important, compared to the 2% who think the same of being famous.

The most important thing for people this age seems to be finding a job they love, with 20% rating it high in the list of priorities.

Social media and family

If we’re to believe the media, all young people are constantly glued to their phones, scrolling through Instagram or swiping on Tinder.

47% of people 23 or older think social media is hugely important to Gen Z’ers, but compare this to the 6% of 16 to 22-year-olds who think the same. Perhaps the way we view other generations is more skewed than we might have thought.

When family is brought up, these numbers are basically flipped. Only 6% of the other generations think family is important to Generation Z – probably assuming that young people are too busy on their phones. But compare this to the 44% of 16 to 22-year-olds who value family highly.

Current affairs

Generation Z is as switched on and concerned about current affairs as people older than them.

Improving the NHS, protecting Britain’s economy and preventing terrorism are the three most important things for all the generations.

However, there are some issues that Gen Z feels more strongly about than the generations before: namely prejudice towards LGBTQ+ people, gender equality, racism, and freedom of movement between countries.

The future

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Generation Z is more optimistic about their future than everyone else.

25% of 16 to 22-year-olds think they will have a better life than their older counterparts. Unfortunately, only 11% of Gen X, Y and the baby boomers think the same. Hey – we can just chalk that up to cynicism with age.

More in this Section

The moving story behind this Hurricane Ophelia photograph

10 jokes that are so stupid they’re funny

Robot Wars returns with satirical metal warrior, Donald Thump

This police force is explaining what is and isn’t a prank, because it's 2017

Today's Stories

No Government jet for freed Halawa

Garda officers may sue for right to strike

Rail unions vote for industrial action

‘We are on our knees after this ... we need help’


A helicopter put a piano on the 150-foot roof of Blarney Castle and other stories from the Cork Jazz Festival archives

Jazz Memories: Famous faces share their favourite moments

Live music review: The Horrors - Icy genius in a thrillingly intimate setting

Choosing a sheltered spot for Maples is vital

More From The Irish Examiner