Generational Differences Around the World
The way generations are different is not the same in every culture and nation. In recent years Gen Y – or the Millennial generation and those who are younger – share many lifestyle and attitude similarities since the introduction of communication technology. The same technology is of course accessed by people of this generation right around the world. With this huge influence, it is interesting to think about whether national and local traditions in countries override the global impact of the internet, or is this generation of millennials and Gen Y-ers now indistinguishable from each other, whatever their nationality? Here are some facts about this generation around the world to consider:
Notable Generational Differences In The World
- The older half of Gen X and the Boomers in China experienced two of the most significant historical events in world history in their lifetimes. In 1960 the Chinese Famine resulted in 36 million people dying from starvation. In 1966 to 1976 the Chinese Cultural Revolution saw the breakdown of social and cultural institutions such as education from schools to universities, and the wholesale destruction of China’s heritage landmarks, artifacts and books.
- In the former Soviet republic which includes Russia, the generations before the fall of communism were raised with non-Western values and culture. The millennial generation is immersed in global and Western cultural values and technology, and experience life in a completely different way to the older generation.
- In Japan, Gen X –ers shared in American cultural norms and lifestyles and in the late 1980s to the early 1990s, Japan experienced a ‘bubble generation’ when the economy was very strong and free spending was the order of the day. Since then, the new millennial and Gen Y demographic has seen a shrinking Japanese economy and are more conservative about spending.
- Gen Y/Millennials everywhere are highly influential because of their large numbers on popular culture, tech usage, and fashion.
- Gen Y’s in China are generally referred to as “little emperors” because they are born under the one child policy as China emerged from communism, the economy boomed and the only child was the sole beneficiary of wealthier families. Although they may have a lot of attention while growing up, because of the tradition of the child looking after their parents and grandparents, they are looking at a future in which they will have to support 4 grandparents and 2 parents. Gen Ys in Western world, on the other hand, can be more focused on their own well-being as Western countries and indeed the parents through a system of private pension schemes ensure that their children are not so responsible for taking care of the elderly.
Over the years to come it will be interesting to see what affects the next generations on the national or the global level, and how they contrast or blend in with their peers of other cultures.