Winter blues: Having real impact in Australia

Monday, July 20, 2015

Winter blues, also called Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), winter depression or seasonal depression, is a condition in which people who have normal mental health throughout most of the year experience depressive symptoms in winter. (Wikipedia)

This July 2015 research took the symptoms and triggers of the winter blues and tested them among a sample of more than 1,000 Australians and found that indeed the impacts of winter are affecting Australians.

Winter makes us over-sleep, over-eat and become less social

More than half (54%) of Australians say that they experience increased difficulty waking up in the morning in winter compared to the warmer months. Similarly, 55% also have more of a tendency to oversleep in winter.

47% of Australians suffer an increased tendency to overeat in winter, with more than 2 in 5 experiencing a craving for carbohydrates (43%) and sweet foods (43%) during the colder months of the year.

42% of us experience a reduced social life during winter and participate in less interactions, which may be linked to the reduced energy (45%) and reduced enjoyment (35%) that we feel during these colder months.

More than 1 in 3 (35%) say they feel more down and depressed in winter than in the warmer months, whereas only 6% experience less of a feeling of being down and depressed during winter.

More than 1 in 4 experience increased irritability (28%) and a feeling of pessimism (26%) during the winter months as well.

Winter impacts the workforce


Winter has an impact on employee performance and the business bottom line with 1 in 3 (33%) Australian employees admitting to suffering reduced motivation at work during winter. Winter also affects employee productivity for 27% of Australians who are less efficient in their role during these colder months.

Sickness also impacts the workforce much more in winter, with around 1 in 3 (31%) Australian employees taking increased time off because of it, with 8% indicating this occurs much more during winter.

Winter affects 28% of Australian employees in the way of less social connection and effectiveness with their work colleagues, while 23% of are also much more likely to arrive late to work in winter than in the warmer months.

Spring Australia’s favourite season

The results are in and the favourite season of Australians is spring with close to 2 in 5 (38%) saying it is their favourite.

Not only was spring the most favourite among Australians, it was also the second favourite beating out autumn.

Winter is the least favourite season for close to 3 in 5 (59%) Australians, making it the least loved season for Aussies.

The cost of work: What we pay to work in 2015

Friday, July 17, 2015

The unemployment rate is rising, but so are the costs of work. And while living costs and house prices have been rising faster than wages, the costs associated with work are also on the way up. From toll roads to public transport costs, a simple cup of coffee to updating work clothes. From childcare costs to tax increases, Australians are paying to work.

A recent 2015 McCrindle Research study of over 540 working Australians reveals that income doesn’t just generate wealth, it also consumes it. Australians are forking out more than ever on transport costs, clothing and food while they are working, significantly reducing their take-home pay. Incurring travel costs associated with work, work-related education expenses, child-care costs, and income tax all further reduce a full-time worker’s take-home pay to less than two thirds of their gross salary.

THE LIFESTYLE COSTS OF WORK

95% of working Australians spend their own money on food and beverages during work times, with almost 3 in 4 Australians (74%) purchasing lunch, morning tea, or coffees when at work or when travelling to/from work at least once per week. More than one fifth of Australians (22%) spend their own money on consumable food items every single day while they are at work.

YOUNGER MALES BUY LUNCH MOST

Males tend to eat out more often, with 27% of male employees purchasing food or beverages at least once per day (compared with 16% of females). The frequency at which employees purchase consumables while at work decreases with age. While 78% of Generation Ys and 77% Generation Xs spend their own money on food and beverages at least once per week, this reduces to 60% for the Baby Boomer Generation.

ALMOST $900 ON LUNCHES PER YEAR

The average Australian employee spends $18.52 on lunches, snacks, and beverages during their workday every week. This takes into consideration the 6% of Australians who don’t spend money on food while they are at work, and ranges to include those who go out more than once a day, some of whom spend over $100 on food and beverages while at work each week. Over a 48-week work year, this average weekly spend accumulates to $889 per year.

THE COST OF FASHION

In an effort to keep up with the latest styles and fashions or simply to avoid wearing the same thing every day, employees spend hundreds of dollars on clothing per year. Australians report spending an average of $320 each year of their own money on clothes they require directly for work. This includes employees across all industries and factors into account those who spend very little, having uniforms supplied, as well as those who purchase corporate apparel.

GETTING TO WORK: THE RISING COST OF CARS

After childcare and tax costs, transport is the greatest expense when it comes to work, with the average Australian spending $99.88 each week on work-related petrol costs, tolls, and/or public transport tickets. While public transport cost increases have been modest, the big challenge for workers has been the rising cost of petrol, tolls and car ownership, and this is particularly relevant for the 2 in 3 Australians (65.5%) who travel to work by private vehicle. The average full time worker spends almost $4,800 per year just on getting to and from work.

UPSKILLING, RETRAINING AND KNOWLEDGE-GAINING

30% of working Australians spent their own money last year on education and training directly associated with their line of work, averaging to $1,936. Overall (accounting for the 70% who didn’t spend any of their own money on employment-related learning), the average Australian worker spends $588.60 per annum of their own money on training, and much of this, where it is retraining for a new career or role, is not tax deductable.

THE CHILDCARE COST CHALLENGE

The Productivity Commission Study into childcare shows the median childcare costs are $7.40 per hour ($74 for a 10 hour day). For those requiring full time childcare for 50 hours per week, this would cost them $370 per week which equates to 22% of the average full time weekly earnings.

A TAXING PROBLEM

The current average full time weekly earnings is $1539.40 per week ($80,049 per annum) which brings this average wage into the third tax bracket (a tax rate of 37 cents per dollar). Based on the 2015-2016 tax schedule this average annual earnings package would attract a tax bill of $16,768.

FOR MANY, IT IS MORE THAN HALF

The average full-time Australian worker who earns $80,049 per annum (current full time adult weekly earnings) is spending $889 of that on lunches, $320 on wardrobe changes, $4,794 on transport costs, $587 on education, $17,760 on child-care (based on 70 hours at average costs) and $16,768 on tax (not including tax deductions). These total work costs add up to $41,118, which is 51% of the average annual gross.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Q and A: Gen Y family formers

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

What is now the most common age of women when they have their first baby; how has this changed in Australia and what are the forecasts?

Generation Y has transformed the lifestages that once marked adulthood and independence. The age of leaving home, starting full time employment, getting a mortgage, marriage and starting a family have all been pushed back later in life. Four decades ago, the median age of females giving birth was 25, while today it is 30.7. Similarly, the median age of females at first birth has been pushed five years later to 29.3. Indeed the age group with the highest fertility rate (births per female) are those 30-34, well above the second category of those aged 25-29, and of all age years from 20-39, the only one that has been growing over this decade are those aged 35-39.

The reasons for the delays in starting families and the rise of older parents are numerous. Generation Y are staying in education longer and starting their earnings later than their parents did. While 1 in 5 Baby Boomers has a university degree and 1 in 4 Gen Xers, for Generation Y it is 1 in 3. Generation Y is the first generation where females have a higher level of formal education than males with 29% of males aged 25-34 holding a university degree compared to 40% of females in this age group. But this increased education comes at the price of delayed earnings and a university debt. Additionally, this generation are beginning their economic lives in times of growing living costs and declining housing affordability. Four decades ago, the average capital city house price was the equivalent of 5 times average annual earnings, by the mid 90s it had stretched to 6 times, while today it is 10 times average annual earnings. In Sydney the median city house price is more than 13 times average annual full time earnings of $72,000.

While the economic, educational and social trends have pushed back the age of starting families, there are biological limits to this trend. Over the last few decades, IVF technology has provided fertility assistance to women in their 30s who are part of this delayed parenting trend, however as fertility expert William Ledger, Professor of Medicine at UNSW points out, “beyond the age of 40, the success rate of IVF has barely moved since the first test tube baby was born in the 1970s”. Scientific advances such as egg freezing and fertility testing continue to assist those who are past the traditional child bearing age, however reversing the chromosomal changes to eggs as women age has not yet become a reality. Generation Z who enter their 20s this year may follow the Generation Y experience by responding to these biological realities and scientific limitations by balancing their family forming years amidst their career and financial goals rather than after they have been achieved.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

More on changing generational characteristics can be found in Mark McCrindle’s book The ABC of XYZ: Understanding The Global Generations.


Australia's Capital Cities

Thursday, July 09, 2015

AUSTRALIA’S CAPITAL CITIES: GROWTH, CHANGE & A FUTURE FORECAST

CAPITAL CITIES

Over 66% of Australians live in the greater metropolitan area of Australia’s 8 capital cities with Sydney being the largest (around 4.9 million), followed by Melbourne (4.5 million). Darwin is Australia’s smallest capital city, with a current population of around 144,000. The nation’s capital, Canberra, has a population of 394,000, larger than Darwin and Hobart combined.

The title of fastest growing city is held by Perth which has recorded 3.05% per year for the past 5 years whilst Hobart has the lowest rate of growth of only 0.67% per year over the same period. Sydney and Melbourne recorded growth of 1.5% and 1.95% per year over respectively.

In terms of population increase, Melbourne comes up on top with an increase of 95,655 people in the last year while Hobart only had an increase of 1,247 people in the same period. In fact Melbourne is growing by more people every 5 days than Hobart adds in an entire year. Sydney recorded an increase of 84,230 people in the last year and based on this increase will be Australia’s first city to reach 5 million, a milestone it will achieve by the middle of 2016.

However, at a state level there have been significant changes over the last 3 years in the population growth rate across Australia. Western Australia, which was the fastest growing state has seen this annual growth rate more than halve from a peak of 3.68% in 2012 to just 1.58% currently. Over the same period of time, Queensland’s growth has also declined significantly from 2.0% to 1.37% now, while Victoria’s consistent population growth rate of 1.75% makes it the fastest growing of any Australian state or territory.

Sydney has a population approximately 400,000 larger than Melbourne’s but Melbourne is growing by over 10,000 more people than Sydney year on year. Assuming medium levels of fertility, overseas migration, life expectancy, and interstate migration flows, Melbourne will take Sydney’s title of Australia’s largest city in 2053 with both cities expected to reach a population of 8 million in 2055.

Perth’s rate of growth will see it overtake Brisbane in 2029 when they both have a population of just over 3 million. They currently have a population of 2.1 million and 2.3 million respectively.

OTHER SIGNIFICANT URBAN AREAS

The Gold Coast – Tweed Heads area has the largest population outside of the capital cities (almost 630,000) and also registered the largest increase in number of residents in 2009 to 2014. The 2nd largest urban area is the Newcastle – Maitland area (430,75435,0005) but the Sunshine Coast had the 2nd largest increase in population even though they are ranked 4th in terms of population size. The City of Dubbo, with a population of 36,622 is the smallest of Australia’s significant urban areas.

Launceston recorded the lowest smallest rate of population increase between 2009 and 2014, growing by only 0.35% per year but they are ranked 13th in overall population, out of 32 significant urban areas. The Traralgon – Morwell area was the only area to experience a population decline with a decrease in population of 28 between 2013 and 2014.

On the other end of the scale, Ellenbrook is the fastest growing urban area by far, recorded growth of 8.35% per year between 2009 and 2014 followed by Melton which recorded growth of 5.32% per year over the same period.

AUSTRALIA'S CAPITALS: POPULATION PROJECTIONS

Sydney

  • Reach 5m in 2016, 6m in 2029, 7m in 2042, 8m in 2055
  • Average annual growth from 2016-2056 = 1.23%

Melbourne

  • Reach 5m in 2021, 6m in 2032, 7m in 2043, 8m in 2055
  • Average annual growth from 2016-2056 = 1.44%

Brisbane

  • Reach 3m in 2028, 4m in 2047
  • Average annual growth from 2016-2056 = 1.6%

Adelaide

  • Reach 1.5m in 2027
  • Average annual growth from 2016-2056 = 0.83%

Perth

  • Reach 3m in 2028, 4m in 2042, 5m in 2055
  • Average annual growth from 2016-2056 = 2.14%

Hobart

  • Reach 250,000 in 2034
  • Average annual growth from 2016-2056 = 0.47%

Darwin

  • Reach 200,000 in 2048
  • Average annual growth from 2016-2056 = 1.08%

Sydney vs Melbourne

  • Melbourne will overtake Sydney for the title of largest Australian city in 2053

Brisbane vs Perth

  • Perth will overtake Brisbane for the title of 3rd largest Australian city in 2029

*Data assuming medium levels of fertility, overseas migration, life expectancy, and interstate migration flows.

Sources: ABS, McCrindle

#TuesdayTrend Highlights

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

#TuesdayTrend

As Australia’s social researchers, we take the pulse of the nation. We research communities. We survey society. We analyse the trends. And we communicate the findings.

Every Tuesday we release a trend about Australia for #TuesdayTrend. Here are some of our recent #TuesdayTrends, highlighting fun facts about Australia. Be sure to follow, share and interact with us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.


ABOUT RESEARCH VISUALISATION


In a world of big data- we’re for visual data. We believe in the democratisation of information- that research should be accessible to everyone not just to the stats junkies. We’re passionate about turning tables into visuals, data into videos and reports into presentations. As researchers, we understand the methods but we’re also designers and we know what will communicate, and how to best engage. We’re in the business of making you look good and your data make sense.


For more information, please get in touch – we’d love to hear from you:

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The changing face of Sydney

Monday, July 06, 2015

“Sydney is a very diverse place, but I think in that diversity, in that difference is a great sense of strength, we all come together as Aussies and as Sydney-siders and I think that’s why so many people, almost 5 million of us, call this city home.” – Mark McCrindle

“The changing face of Sydney has been phenomenal”

Sydney, the place many of us call home, is Australia’s economic powerhouse.

We are adding almost 90,000 people to our city every single year, and the 5 fastest growing areas in New South Wales are all located in Sydney.

Back 50 years ago Sydney had just hit 2 million people, we are going to finish next year at 5 million people.

“Old ways and old attitudes are disappearing”

Sydney is a fascinating and complex landscape where old ways and old attitudes are disappearing.

We used to have a cringe factor of, “this part of the city is better than that part of the city” and people would perhaps be embarrassed if they weren’t closer to where the action was. That’s all changed. People in Greater Western Sydney embrace that as their moniker, proud of being a Westie.

“Sydney; a mini United Nations”

NSW has the highest migration of any Australian state, and Sydney – a global city, receives most of this growth. In this city of diversity, the city’s newest citizens form new tribes in its oldest suburbs.

  • South Africans have embraced Dover Heights,
  • The Chinese – Chatswood and Hurstville,
  • It’s little Lebanon in Mount Lewis,
  • Little England in Manly,
  • A lot of Vietnam in Cabramatta,
  • And the Maltese have made Arndell Park their own.

Now the number one surname in the Parramatta white pages is Patel.

“Sydney is undergoing an opportunity revolution”

And when it comes to work the CBD is no longer the cities undisputed top dog. Sydney is undergoing an opportunity revolution, with entrepreneurial hotspots sprouting up just about everywhere.

You’ve got the media and communications hubs around Surry Hills and Ultimo, and high-tech emerging in areas of Parramatta and even in Penrith. It’s not all just happening in the CBD alone.

The Changing Face of Sydney

Sydney has many faces, but what binds us, the one thing we all have in common is this often complex, always beautiful, ever-changing city.

WATCH THE CHANGING FACE OF SYDNEY SEGMENT BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK OR THE IMAGE BELOW


Q and A: 'Kidults' still living at home

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

What’s with the increase of the 20-something 'kidults' still living at home and is it a positive for the child and parent?

The active role of parenting is a longer journey today compared to the past- extending from birth, through the dependent years, adolescent years and now well into the 20’s. This has created some new social trends: the boomerang kids (the large number of children in their early 20’s who leave the parental home, only to boomerang back a couple of years later as the costs mount), the sandwich generation (today’s parents sandwiched between the time and costs of their stay-at-home adult children, and the care of their own ageing parents), and this generation of late 20-something KIPPERS (Kids In Parents’ Pockets Eroding Retirement Savings).

However for all the labels, there are some clear reasons for these delayed lifestages. The rising cost of living, housing affordability challenges, prolonged educational years and consequently larger study debts have put this generation further behind where their parents were at the same age. In addition to the higher costs, greater debts and delayed earnings are the mobile lifestyles, technology expenses and increased travel, all greater than that of their parents.

Therefore for a generation who have pushed marriage and starting a family back, from the 20-something years into the early 30’s on average, staying longer with mum and dad is not only a social option but for many a financial necessity. Based on modest rental costs, this option of staying at home with mum and dad, when compared to even modest shared accommodation costs of $250 per week represents a saving of around $15,000 per year by the time that the saving on some food and bills are included.

However, while there is a financial cost on parents, there is a social gain. Many parents in conversations with me have expressed that while they jokingly complain about the arrangement, the connection it gives with their children, the likelihood of them staying nearby as the grandchildren appear on the scene, and the many ways that it keeps parents in touch with some of the trends and changes of Generations Y and Z are all great benefits.

The key to family harmony in these new households is to ensure that parents and their payments aren’t taken advantage of, and that the adult children aren’t treated once again as dependents. A simple agreement setting out the financial contributions and domestic tasks of the family members, with an expiry date when the agreement can be re-assessed is a practical help. That way we will likely create multigenerational harmony not intergenerational conflict.


FOR MORE INFORMATION:

More on changing household structures can be found in Mark McCrindle’s book The ABC of XYZ: Understanding The Global Generations.


Australian Community Trends Study for the Not-For-Profit Sector: Models & Instruments Explained

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Not-for-profit organisations are invited to participate in the Australian Community Trends Report, a national, comprehensive research study of the sector, conducted by McCrindle and R2L & Associates.

This inaugural study will form the basis for a longitudinal study which will be conducted annual and provide a detailed analysis of the effectiveness, engagement and awareness of the not-for-profit sector. It will help not-for-profit organisations understand the Australian community – the emerging trends, the giving landscape and the current and emerging supporter segments. The Australian Community Trends Report will provide a clear analysis of the social context in which the not-for-profit sector is operating.

The snapshot of the external environment, the visibility of the community attitudes and perceptions, supporter engagement and satisfaction will be ascertained through a series of quantitative surveys and qualitative focus groups. The output will be visual, strategic and communicated through key models and instruments developed specifically for this Australian Community Trends Study. These models and instruments have been explained below.

Find out more about the Australian Community Trends Report Study here.

Giving Sentiment Matrix


The Giving Sentiment Matrix segments Australians and their preferred focus from a local versus global perspective, as well as the charitable purpose with which they best resonate, from advocacy and education to direct action. The matrix plots and quantifies Australians based on the national survey and overlays on these segments the positioning of Australia’s diverse charities.

It will identify 4 main segments which will be quantified and defined such as:

  • Global advocates
  • Community influencers
  • Local activists
  • Overseas participators

Blocker-Enabler Giving Grid


The Blocker-Enabler Giving Grid is a strategic communications tool for Australian not-for-profits to help them understand the blockers to giving and enablers which facilitate giving by Australians. These blockers and enablers developed through both the quant and qual phases of the Australian Community Trends Study are classified based on the emotional practical nature of them.

Net Promoter Score (NPS)


The best global, single measure, cross-industry comparable tool is the Net Promoter Score (NPS). The Australian NFP sector does not yet have an industry wide NPS against which individual charities can benchmark. This industry NPS will mean that individual organisations will now be able to see their score in the context of the overall sector rather than comparing to other industries.

Net Repeater Score (NRS)


The Net Repeater Score (NRS) is an effective measure of post-choice satisfaction and a powerful predictor of re-engagement. It supplements the NPS and is a more pure measure of individual engagement and overcomes the personality influences of promoter measures.

Net Culture Score (NCS)


One of the key assets of Australia’s NFP sector is the employer brand is the employer brand and rewarding workplace culture which is so attractive to the emerging generations of employees and volunteers. The Net Culture Score (NCS) will highlight the staff satisfaction and employee engagement which exists across the sector and which will provide an industry wide score for employer brand benchmarking purposes.

Australian Charities Leaders Snapshot


This scenario planning instrument analyses the key local and global trends impacting the Australian NFP sector. It is an environmental scan based on the DESTEL tool (Demographic, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental, Legislative trends). Based on the perspective of the key leaders in the sector, it provides a forecast of the strategic trends that have significant impact and probability measures.

Engagement Funnel


The engagement funnel analyses the entrance points Australians have with NFPs. It measures the proportion who connect through the mass advertising and communications campaigns compared to those who resonate around the purposes and cause and those who connect with the organisational brand or charity. It analyses both the interactions that facilitate engagement and those that set this process back. It also helps show how those connected with a charity or organisation can be reactivated to connect with specific causes and campaigns.

McCrindle Participation Scale


The participation Scale tracks the journey of Australians who have an awareness of a charity. It defines the transition points from reluctancy and apathy through the stage of passivity to activity and advocacy. It defines the timeframes of these transitions, methods to best create movement along this scale and acts as a measure for organisations to track where their audience currently sits and how to further transition them.

Find out more about the Australian Community Trends Report Study here.


Social media and narcissism

Monday, June 22, 2015

It seems there is more armchair diagnosing of narcissism and calling people “narcissists” than ever before and social media is often the trigger of it and takes the blame. Narcissistic Personality Disorder is defined by the symptoms of behaviours of grandiosity and lack of self-awareness, an abnormal need for admiration, and often a lack of empathy toward others. While even a cursory look at one’s social media feed will show posts which seem to promote (and perhaps exaggerate) achievements and certainly the visual aspects of social media are preoccupied with appearance, beauty, status and success. While celebrity news and popular culture has for some time been permeated with these characteristics, this last decade has offered celebrity in the suburbs where everyone on YouTube can “broadcast yourself”, personal websites and blogs are de jure, and to exist without social media is seemingly to not exist at all.

Almost two and a half millennia ago Socrates wrote that “to do is to be” while now it seems that “to tweet is to be”. Such is the popularity of such communication platforms, if social media sites were countries, Facebook would be the world’s largest country with more active accounts than there are people in China. Twitter would rank 4th with twice the “population” of the USA and Instagram would round out the Top 10. While the speed of adoption of these communication platforms has been unprecedented- all of this occurring in less than a decade, the reasons for the take-up are varied. Certainly much social media activity is push-communication, with users wanting to publicise their latest activities and status, for many social media use is a genuine attempt to connect, to engage and to listen. However our latest research shows this latter group comprises just 1 in 5 social media users: the contributors who participate via social media as in any community- to share and participate, speak and listen, connect and contribute. Such are these times that the larger proportion of social media users- almost 4 in 5 are consumers, who largely use social media as an update channel to see what others are up to, and when posting something themselves, it is more broadcast and generic than personal and connective.

Most behavioural experts agree that narcissism is a condition not of biology but society- it is the social context not the genetic factors that are causal. In a world of always-connected, app-ready, mobile device saturated living, where every phone is a camera and we are ever just a few clicks away from posting our next contribution it is clear that social media has created an environment conducive to the growth of narcissism. However the apparent rise of narcissism may be more a factor of social media highlighting its existence and narcissistic-type behaviours rather than of itself creating more narcissism. Indeed some of the negative press social media receives is unwarranted. Selfies are given as the ultimate sign of narcissistic times, and combined with today’s must-have item- the selfie stick, an indicator of self-obsession. However most selfies are more “groupies” – not photos of oneself by oneself, but of a group and sent to other friends. Many (though not all) selfies are more about sharing a life journey rather than an unashamed exercise in self-promotion. So too the “status update”, the Instagram account and the personal blog: while such musing and sharing in our grandparents era was kept to a personal journal or limited to a family photo album, the current approach is definitely more public but most of it is a long way from fitting the pure definition of narcissistic grandiosity and an overwhelming need for admiration. In fact the Australian characteristics of keeping things “fair dinkum” and “not blowing your own trumpet” are still part of the local approach. The tall poppy syndrome remains a powerful social norm to ensure that no one gets “too big for his boots” or is “putting on airs”. The Australian values of community mindedness and looking out for each other ensure that empathy remains strong and narcissism is kept at bay- even this great screen age.

Latest media commentary

Monday, June 15, 2015

As Australia’s leading social researchers, the senior research team at McCrindle are actively involved in media commentary. From demographic analysis and future forecasts, to communication of key research findings and the identification of social trends, at McCrindle we are passionate about communicating insights in clear, accessible and useable ways.

Here are some the most recent media pieces our research and team have been cited in:


What will adulthood be like for Generation Z?

“McCrindle – whose business is analysing generational trends and forecasts – says generation Z is characterised by five key terms. They are global," through the possibilities of technology, and through pop culture -–movies, music, brands and language changes make their way around the world more quickly and thoroughly than ever before. They are "digital," thanks to the devices through which they live their lives. This generation is distinctly "social" because it gets a great deal of information not from experts but from peers, largely through social media. They are highly "mobile" in the fluidity of their work and housing. And they are uniquely "visual: in terms of how they process their information: YouTube is their search engine of choice, because "they don't want to read an article about something, they want to watch a video about something."

CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE


Treechangers flee city for a cheaper home

Social researcher Mark McCrindle said moving to regional areas was now a viable option for buyers who had been priced out to Sydney’s fringes.

“For that extra bit of distance of living in a region, particularly if they can get a job there, someone would cut down on the commute time into the CBD or into Sydney from where they are in the outer ring suburbs,” Mr McCrindle said.

He added that an influx of new developments and infrastructure being built in regional areas was making them more attractive and had contributed to a change in attitude from Sydneysiders, who are now more open to ’going bush’.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE


More than a fashion choice, the everyday aesthetics of tattooing

According to the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council, 22 per cent of Australian men and 29 per cent of women aged 20 to 29 have at least one tattoo.

In a 2013 survey conducted by Sydney-based McCrindle Research, a third of people with tattoos regretted them to some extent, and 14 per cent had looked into or started the removal process. Laser removal has become cheaper and more readily available, but there are serious safety concerns around cheap lasers, poorly-trained operators and the risk of serious burns and scars to clients.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE


IVF isn’t a fix-all for those choosing to delay adulthood

From a societal point of view, what worries me is what demographer and social commentator Mark McCrindle refers to as the "safety net syndrome" – the perception held that someone, whether it's the government or medical science, will solve the problems that have arisen because of a person's own choices. When it comes to fertility, that's simply not possible.

There are, however, promising signs that the pendulum is starting to swing back. McCrindle's research indicates that Generation Z is rejecting the "have it all" attitude of the previous generation and is recognising the limitations of science when it comes to fertility.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE


Victoria’s man drought: Areas where there are more women than men – and vice versa

The female surplus is particularly pronounced in some affluent eastern and bayside suburbs, university locations and “seachange” destinations.

“Females greatly outnumber men in older, established suburbs or places popular with retirees or with aged care homes because they live longer,” social researcher and demographer Mark McCrindle said.

“You also find more women living in locations with female-friendly institutions such as universities, or outer suburban areas with a lower cost of living suitable for single parents.”

“Places where males significantly outnumber females are mainly regional, industrial, farming, fruit picking and military and air force zones. It’s employment-driven,” Mr McCrindle said.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE


Sydney real estate: Narrowest home on the market expected to fetch upwards of $700,000

Social researcher Mark McCrindle said there was a clear trend of Australians moving away from bigger properties and looking at smaller homes.

“Certainly Australians are responding to smaller properties because the trend has been towards unit and apartment living anyway,” Mr McCrindle said.

“People buying homes have already lived in medium-density housing. A century ago, there were 4.5 people per household in Australia. Now it’s down to 2.6 people per household and the Australian Bureau of Statistics forecasts a drop to 2.5 in the next two decades.”

Mr McCrindle said smaller homes tended to be located in the inner city, where there was an urban environment and a cafe lifestyle.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE

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