Image credit: ENEL Foundation

For UN World Youth Skills Day 2020, Istituto Piepoli and the Enel Foundation presented the results of an extensive study conducted among young Italians. This joint research aimed to investigate, qualitatively and quantitatively, the state of Millennials and Generation Z after COVID-19, while also looking at their future trends at a socio-economical level.

The study was carried out on two different groups, one of 16-19 years of age and the other 20-26, for a total of 5,500 people. Although both generations appear well aware that the economic boom witnessed after World War II is long gone, their sociological responses to it differ from one another.

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If on the one hand the youngest were born right into a crisis and are therefore much more pragmatic and sceptical about the future, the older saw the final end of that boom and developed a stronger idealism. What’s interesting though is their common denominator: a much stronger sensitivity towards sustainability at an environmental, personal and economic level. Climate changeconscious consumption and digitalization seem indeed to be the pillars of the younger society and the keystones on which the future will hinge.

Building on a study carried out by the Commonwealth Science and Industry Research Organization (CSIRO), Australia’s national science research agency, Istituto Piepoli and Enel Foundation clustered the interviewed individuals in six big groups, each representing a different trend. The “mega trends” identified are: “More from Less” related to the optimization of value from money; “Virtually Here” on new technologies; “Great Expectations” on the wish for gratifying experiences while consuming; “Going…going…gone?” on climate change and ecological sensitivity; “The Silk Highway” on Eastern contaminations; and “Forever Young” on the need to never feel marginalized. All these seem to point at a future that has broken away from the promises of globalization blind to the needs of the Planet and the people themselves, laying down the basis for more sustainable and conscious development in Italy.

During the webinar in July 15, Nicola Piepoli, President of Istituto Piepoli, commented: “Millennials and GenZ seem to be on one hand very different, reflecting the generations of their parents (Millennials, sons of the boom, more idealistic, and GenZ, sons of the crisis, more realists), but on the other, they are united by the idea that corporations have to listen to their ambitions and creativity.”

Enel Foundation Managing Director Carlo Papa further commented: “The design of this research was made possible by the joint expertise of Istituto Piepoli and Enel Foundation. The result is a clear picture of the future seen through the eyes of Millennials and GenZ, interviewed on key trends related to energy, sustainability and climate change as well”.

Learn more and download the presentation here

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