Review: Young, Gifted and Held Back

· 376 words · 2 minute read

I found the Economist article of 2016 interesting to see the trend. Summary as I see:

  1. The article defines the young as an age group between 15 and 30. The total population is roughly 1.8 billion, and about 85% live in developing countries.
  2. They got higher education than any other preceding generations. As a result, many speak fluent foreign languages and are globalized. Minorities are more fairly recognized. Software substantially lowered the cost of starting a new business.
  3. Jobs: Due to extreme competition and low growth, corporations are reluctant to hire the new generation at mass. Since policies tend to protect people already employed, the remaining options are between founding a company and unstable positions. Given the importance of the first ten years of the career, the impact can be over-lasting.
  4. Job2: The young generation would get a job that doesn’t exist yet. Most openings will be from the private sector, but we have policies protecting the existing dynamics. Thus, they may interfere negatively (too much or too little).
  5. Housing: Urbanization makes cities more appealing, and jobs are in those cities. Due to existing landlords’ interests, new constructions are getting harder, and housing prices remain high. Not to mention immigration, policies like Chinese hukou make movements to the cities harder.
  6. Families: Marriages are getting late, leaving little time to have kids. As marriages become more of an individual event, not a family business, divorces have become more common. Males need to take more active roles in the household for the family, but those new pressure make expanding the family even more challenging and depressing.
  7. Isolations: As having families become more challenging, more individuals are isolated, making them an easy target to be radicalized (e.g., terrorism or criminals). In addition, some countries practice polygyny or abort a specific gender, further distorting the balance. Society needs to support those individuals to be more competitive.
  8. Misunderstanding: Since society looks more affluent, the older generation doesn’t acknowledge the new challenges of the young.
  9. Optimism: The young discriminate less and are more tolerant of differences. They are more active on global environmental issues and less nationalistic. So, they may be able to change the world in a better direction amid all the challenges. ∎

(translated from Korean to English in 2022-07.)