Top Trends For 2015

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Trends for 2015 are a mix of social trends, demographic shifts and technological change.

Here are the top five that will shape 2015, which will mark the mid-point in this iconic decade of change that began with the iPad and apps, and will end in 2020.

1. Reflective country

While Australia views itself as the lucky country, 2015 will be a year of our nation being a reflective country. We will see the centenary of the ANZAC landings track record attendance at ANZAC services as well as the big events at Gallipoli, but not only will April 25 be big in the calendar the entire year will have centenary reflections of Australians involvement with WW1 throughout the year causing us to reflect on sacrifice, loss, duty and the makings of modern Australia.

“2015 will see Australia being unusually reflective. Self-analysis is not part of our national psyche yet the year ahead will see us looking back, looking in, and remembering. This final month of 2014 has been an emotional time for the nation and in some ways it has set the theme for the year ahead. It will not be a year of sadness- just sombreness- the “no worries” attitude subdued for a while. Australians love a celebration and this land of the long-weekend is good at enjoying the journey- but the year ahead will bring some heaviness to the journey, and some healthy introspection as well.”

Mark McCrindle


2. Downageing

2015 marks significant milestones for Australia’s generations. Gen Y hit their mid-30’s, Gen X hit mid-life at 50 and the baby boomers approach the 70 year milestone. Each of these generations is living younger than their years would suggest, and the year ahead will see growth in nostalgia industries, adventure tourism, marathons, Kokoda treks and Antarctica expeditions etc. will boom as will products facilitating mobility in a time of ageing.

“Never before have the generations been as detached from their age as we’re seeing with the Boomers and Gen Xers. Age is just a number for the Gen Xers who were shaped by Commodore 64 computers, Atari games systems and grunge music yet begin turning 50 in 2015. And the original post war Baby Boomers who then ushered in the separate life stage of teenager hood and popularised rock ‘n roll are now closing in on 70 and redefining retirement and the seniors’ life stage.”

Mark McCrindle


3. Generation glass

The emerging generation have been shaped in the last few years which has finessed glass as the new medium of content delivery. Glass that we carried (smartphones and tablets), glass that we wear (apple watch, google glass, fit bits) will be further expanded with glass that we interact with all around us, from multi-touch glass work surfaces to interactive display walls from virtual fitting rooms in stores to head up displays becoming mainstream in cars to interactive display walls in car show rooms. 2015 will see glass coming to life all around us.

“We’ve had to wait almost 600 years for a new medium to be transformed for mass, portable, popular communication and it is happening now. In 1439 Johannes Gutenberg transformed paper to be usable for mass communication when his printing press enabled books and brochures to become mainstream. As radical a transformation is taking place now with glass being reinvented to be the new, portable mass communication device- glass that we look at not just look through, glass that we carry, wear and touch.”

Mark McCrindle


4. Vertical communities

With record population growth comes increase densification in our larger capitals and now Sydney, Melbourne, Darwin and Canberra all have more new home approvals that are units and townhouses compared to detached homes. 2015 will be the year where infill developments continue and where we see more emphasis on households even those raising children’s, living up, not out. Everything from small grocery store format to shared community spaces in buildings rather than parks flow in a society where we move to high density living.

“2015 will see Australia’s population reach 24 million and amidst the record birth, longevity and migration growth is the growing population density of our major cities. The Aussie dream is more likely a unit near public transport than a home with a backyard and a shed. As urban growth changes from a sprawl out to building up we will see “walkable communities”, shared spaces, café connections and more local shopping thrive.”

Mark McCrindle


5. Digital comes to life

2015 will further the expansion of the digital becoming actual through increasing access to 3D printing technology, the internet of things becoming more practical (light bulbs and cameras being monitored from smart phone apps etc.), and virtual reality becoming a useful business tool (new Oculus 3D headsets increasingly being used beyond gaming to being utilised for design, real-estate and planning applications).

“The ‘virtual’ in ‘virtual reality’ is becoming harder to define. 2015 will see further blurring between the digital and the actual as printers go 3D, in-store fitting rooms go hi-tech and conferences and classrooms go video-based, virtual and global. From VR headsets to interactive display walls we’re increasingly going to find it difficult to find where the bricks and mortar meet the bits and bytes.”

Mark McCrindle

Sydney Vs Melbourne Rivalry [infographic]

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Sunday 7 December, 2014 – Melbourne has been named the world’s most liveable city for the fourth year in a row, but what is it about this city that make’s living there so wonderful, and how does Sydney, which ranked 7th on the same list, compare?

Off the back of the rivalry that exists between these two cities, McCrindle Research decided to gather, analyse, compare and present the most significant data of Sydney and Melbourne in a visualised infographic to show how these global cities measure up.

Sydney Vs Melbourne Infographic

Sydney is larger, but Melbourne is growing faster

While Sydney is larger, with a population of 4,879,000 Melbourne is growing at a rate that is 18% faster, meaning it will be Australia’s largest city by 2050.

“While people tend to think that Sydney is by far Australia’s largest city, its population is only 9% larger than that of Melbourne and the gap is closing. Melbourne added 70,000 more people than Sydney did over the last 5 years and based on the current growth trends, soon after mid-century, Melbourne will be Australia’s largest city”, said Mark McCrindle.

Sydney - home to more international guests

Sydney is more culturally diverse than Melbourne – less Sydneysiders (58.1%) were born in Australia than Melbournites (62.6%). Ancestry also comes into play here, with slightly less Sydneysiders being of Australian ancestry than those living in Melbourne.

Tourism is also more popular in the city of Sydney, with 12,753,000 international arrivals last year, that’s almost twice as many as recorded to have visited Melbourne (7,000,000).

Iconic landmarks and transport

While driving is the most popular commute option for both cities, more Melbournites drive to work than Sydneysiders – an extra 105 025 to be exact. Comparatively, more Sydneysiders walk to work than their fellow Melbournites.

Cycling is more common amongst those living in Melbourne, with 18% less Sydneysiders using this form of transport in their commute to work.

The harbour is a huge feature of Sydney – home to the Sydney Opera House and facilitating the harbour Bridge as well as ferry transportation in and out of the city, it is iconic both visually and practically.

While Sydney’s iconic landmark and mode of transport are facilitated by water, Melbourne’s are firmly set on the ground and have a much older history. Flinders Street Station opened in 1854, 119 years before the Sydney Opera House. On census day, 72,862 Melbournites caught a tram to work, becoming Melbourne’s second most popular commute option (with driving a car being the first).

The weather debate

Perhaps one of the most contentious issues around the Sydney vs. Melbourne debate is the weather. Despite varying temperatures and public perception that Melbourne is worse for the weather, Sydney is the city that receives more rainfall – a total of 1223 mm on average while Melbourne receives less than half of that (603 mm).

However, it seems the perceptions aren’t entirely false as Sydney has hotter temperatures, less cloudy days and a greater number of clear days on average than Melbourne.

Melbourne - home to more passionate sporting fans

It would seem that Melbournites are more involved with their sport, considering Melbourne has larger stadiums and more passionate club members! While Sydney’s largest club is the Sydney Swans with just over 40,000 members, Melbourne’s Collingwood club has double that number of memberships (80,793).

Melbourne and Sydney also play different sports, with 9 Melbourne AFL teams compared to Sydney’s 2, and 9 Sydney NRL teams compared to the one Melbourne Storm team.

Sydney home to ‘the best Olympic games ever’

Melbourne hosted Australia’s first Olympics in 1956, however Sydney’s was dubbed ‘the best Olympic games ever!’ The 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney also gained 23 more medal placing’s than Melbourne’s Summer Olympics, held 44 years before.

Sydney more expensive than Melbourne

While Sydneysiders earn more on average than Melbournites, they also pay 37% more for their houses, with the average house price in Sydney costed at $843,994 compared to just $615,068 in Melbourne.

While the debate for who makes the best coffee is strong between the cities, Melbournites are paying an extra 9 cents per cup than the average Sydney-sider.

The verdict

“Few nations have two cities which dominate the national demographic and economic landscape as Australia has in Sydney and Melbourne. 1 in 5 Australians live in Sydney and another 1 in 5 call Melbourne home. There are as many Australians who live in the two cities of Sydney and Melbourne as there are people in the whole of the states of Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory combined”, states social demographer Mark McCrindle.

But regardless of the rivalry, one thing we can all agree on is that both Sydney and Melbourne are global cities, with a rich history, diversity, opportunity and amenity of which all Australians can be proud.

McCrindle in Melbourne

From our base in Sydney, McCrindle has worked with clients from across Australia and the world. Knowing the constantly changing nature of society today we are always looking for ways to increase our capacity to provide innovative social research solutions to our clients, spanning a multitude of sectors and locations.

With that in mind, we at McCrindle are excited to have extended our offering to our clients by establishing an office in Melbourne.

Feel free to give our Melbourne office a call on 03 9691 3579 or email nathan@mccrindle.com.au for more information.


Sydney Vs Melbourne Infographic

INFOGRAPHIC AND MEDIA CONTACT

Please see the infographic for a visual representation of the data.

For further information, interviews, or images, please contact the McCrindle Research office at 02 8824 3422 or ashley@mccrindle.com.au.

Sources: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Bureau of Meteorology, McCrindle Research


Claire Madden Speaks: Are libraries a thing of the past?

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The library – home to books and information, including volumes of research by those gone before.

For generations past the library was nothing short of a fountain of knowledge and relevance, but for the emerging generations growing up in an increasingly digitalised age, has the necessity for a library been replaced by touch screens and online search engines?

McCrindle Research Director and Next Gen Expert Claire Madden provides her thoughts on the relevance of the library today and as we move into the future.

AN ERA OF UNPRECEDENTED CHANGE

It is undisputed that today we live in an era of unprecedented change and development. The way we work, communicate and socialise has been greatly influenced by the extraordinary technological advancements we have seen over the past 2 decades. For example, it was only in 1997 that Google was registered as a domain and today there are over 3.5 billion Google searches each day.

The internet has transformed how we access information. In many cases, the data available to us online has replaced the need to locate the same information in books.

REMAINING RELEVANT

It is imperative that in this era of change, organisations, institutions and individuals remain relevant and engaged with the current trends. Education is at the forefront of needing to adapt to change as the emerging generations redefine learning. School students are still being assessed by closed book exams in an open book world but a shift has occurred among learners from needing to memorise things ‘just in case’ to simply accessing information ‘just in time’.

PRINT VS. DIGITAL

We needn’t look far for examples of organisations that have become outdated and irrelevant due to the huge technological shift we have seen characterise the last two decades.

Take Encyclopaedia Britannica, a trusted source that many depended on for their school assignments, whose first print edition was published in 1768. In 2010 it ran its final print edition, having been superseded by Wikipedia, invented just 9 years prior in 2001. Rather than being written by experts, Wikipedia is written by the collaborative community and currently has over 4.6 million pages in English alone. It exists as an astonishing example of the change we have seen in the learning, sharing and distribution of resources, knowledge and information.

Similarly, let’s look at Angus and Robertson, an iconic Australian bookseller, book publisher and book printer. Established in 1884, it went into voluntary administration in 2011 along with competitor Borders, showing the shift from the demand for print to the demand for digital.

LIBRARIES TODAY

If we look at school libraries and education today, some have transitioned into a completely digital and virtual model – libraries with no books at all – a concept we would not have fathomed a decade ago. Libraries are now being reinvented as engaging learning spaces where people can access information from their personal devices. Amazingly, today it is even possible to complete a university degree without stepping foot in a university library.

Libraries are experiencing significant change and librarians are no longer the only people with the keys to access the information. In the past, data was costly and difficult to access but now, students can access every piece of information within a few clicks of a button. Technologies have enabled greater efficiencies – and so, traditional ways of finding information are being surpassed with newer, quicker alternatives. For example, locating a book on library shelves by conducting a Boolean search is being replaced by a Google Docs search which provides the latest information on any device and in any location by the mere click of a button or touch of a screen.

WILL LIBRARIES CEASE TO EXIST ALTOGETHER?

While digital media will increasingly be utilised and adapted because of the efficiencies that it enables, humans are still tactile and kinaesthetic learners. The process of connecting pen to paper, turning pages in a book, and physically interacting with the information we consume is unlikely to be completely replaced by the digital offering.

Claire Madden is a social researcher and next-gen expert. She is the Director of Research at the internationally recognised McCrindle Research. Armed with her research methodologies, business acumen and communication skills, Claire effectively bridges the gap between the emerging generations and the business leaders and educators of today. She is fluent in the social media, youth culture, and engagement styles of these global generations, and a professional in interpreting what this means for educators, managers and marketers.

Christmas 2014: Traditional Values and Tight Pockets

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

In the lead up to Christmas, McCrindle Research surveyed 1,024 Australians to discover their views on the religious traditions of the season and their spending intentions for Christmas 2014.

9 in 10 Australian’s think religious traditions of Christmas should be encouraged

From angels and stars featuring on Christmas trees to nativity scenes filling shopping centres and thousands attending Carolling events across the country, it’s hard to ignore the religious traditions and symbols that characterise the Christmas season.

However it would appear that, not only do Aussie’s tolerate these religious traditions, 9 in 10 (92%) think they should be encouraged to have a public presence.


This follows a 2013 study conducted by McCrindle in which almost 8 in 10 (79%) said that Christmas was ‘becoming too commercial and all about getting stuff,’ with the same percentage stating that Christmas has lost some of its Christian meaning. 1 in 2 (49%) indicated they were unhappy about the loss of the Christian meaning associated with this holiday, further reiterated in this year’s research.

2 in 5 (41%) Australians also acknowledge that while we live in a culturally and religiously diverse nation, Christmas and its traditional and religious symbols can be shared by all and so should be encouraged.

Aussie families will seek to save again this Christmas

With the cost of living at a higher rate than ever before, Aussie families will be looking to save money where possible again this Christmas, with twice as many intending to spend less (22%) than more (11%). However, in a sign of slowly returning consumer confidence, two thirds (66%) of Australians plan to spend about the same that they did last year (a figure significantly up from 49% who reported the same thing a year ago).

While Australians still plan on saving, the financial burdens seem to have eased since last year when over a third (33%) planned on spending less, compared to 1 in 5 (22%) that will do the same this Christmas. While this rate peaked last year at 33% Australian’s are now on the recovery path, measured by consumer intention.

Like last year, Gen Y will be the biggest spenders, with 1 in 5 (20%) looking to spend more than they did last year (compared to 12% Gen X, 7% Baby Boomers and just 4% Builders).

How Aussie’s plan to save this Christmas

When asked how Australians plan on saving money this Christmas, the top 10 most featured answers included:

1. Restrict the number of presents for each person

2. Only give presents to children

3. Participate in a Kris Kringle gift-giving exercise

4. Get creative by giving hand-made gifts as presents

5. Avoid unnecessary Christmas purchases

6. Not going overboard with food

7. Do some serious bargain hunting

8. Make the most of Boxing Day sales and buy gifts after Christmas

9. Not travel at Christmas time

10. Host Christmas at someone else’s house


Download the Australian Christmas Attitudes 2014 report. Click here to download the full report.

Welcome to McCrindle Research Rooms

Friday, November 14, 2014

As social researchers, we understand the importance of research in informing the strategic direction of organisations. Understanding your customer and client base is key to this – so organisations who invest in research often thrive as a result, because changes and adaptions have been tested in and amongst their communities, consumers and clients. A core methodology to understand customers and clients is through qualitative focus groups – and here at McCrindle not only do we conduct this research, we also make our research room facilities available to others for hire.

McCrindle Research Rooms



McCrindle Research Rooms are fully equipped with all that you need to successfully conduct your focus groups, with a one way mirror, viewing room and recording facilities available.


Some other great features of our Research Rooms include:

• A great, convenient and easily accessible location

• Low price and great value

• No cancellation fee


For further information, head to researchrooms.com, or give us a call on 02 8824 3422.

If you would like to make a booking, please email through to kirsten@mccrindle.com.au


We look forward to welcoming you to our research rooms soon!

Parents Concerned with Schoolies Celebrations

Monday, November 10, 2014

In the span of a generation, celebrating the end of Year 12 by attending a schoolies week has emerged as a rite of passage. However Australian parents have mixed views of how the celebration is played out and a third of parent’s state that they would not allow their child to participate in a “Gold Coast type schoolies week”.

-Mark McCrindle

Schoolies week has become a tradition in Australia, and the norm for how Australian students reward themselves following months of studious diligence preparing for the HSC exams.

Yet parents aren’t altogether convinced of how their young people are celebrating – nearly all Australian parents have some concern with how schoolies is celebrated and a third would stop their children from participating.

In fact, if parents were given the choice, just 1 in 5 would suggest their child participate in schoolies week as is traditionally celebrated, in a place like the Gold Coast.

THE TOP FINDINGS

• 9 in 10 Australian parents uncomfortable with how Schoolies is celebrated.

• NSW the state with the most concerned parents.

• 3 in 4 parents would prefer their child participate in a volunteer experience over Schoolies week.

• Parents hold strong preference for formal schooling after the HSC.

• Fathers (36%) are more hopeful their child will go to university or TAFE than mothers (26%).

• Less than half of Australians say that schools are effective in equipping students for the workforce.

• Older Australians least optimistic about the current education system.

To read the full analysis please click here.

Claire Madden Speaking Pack Update

Monday, October 27, 2014

Claire Madden

Claire Madden is a social researcher and Director of Research at the internationally recognised McCrindle. Armed with her research methodologies, business acumen and communication skills, Claire effectively bridges the gap between the emerging generations and the business leaders and educators of today.

She is a next-gen expert, fluent in the social media, youth culture, and engagement styles of these global generations, and a professional in interpreting what this means for educators, managers and marketers.

With academic qualifications in communications and postgraduate studies in leadership, Claire brings robust, research-based content to her engaging presentations and consulting. As a social commentator, she has been interviewed on these topics on prominent television programs Sunrise and The Morning Show, as well as on the radio and in the print media.

To see Claire in the media click here.

Claire has delivered professional development sessions for school and tertiary teachers, given keynote addresses at conferences as well as board room strategy sessions. From conducting training days for corporate and not for profit clients, to addressing students, training rising leaders and facilitating youth panels, Claire is in a unique position to understand the emerging generations and communicate the key engagement strategies.

Some recent feedback about Claire:

“We received lots of positive feedback about Claire’s presentation on the day… it was great to have such an interactive and engaging presenter on board to present new and interesting content.” – The University of Adelaide

"Claire was excellent! She was warm in her presentation and full of useful information - it was very well received! ...It was exactly what we were after." – SU Queensland

“Claire’s ability to communicate the factual data in an engaging and interactive way was tremendous.” – Mentone Grammar

“We were extremely pleased with how both events went – Claire’s insights were highly valuable, as was the quality and professionalism of both her presentations” – Citi Bank Australia & New Zealand

Visit Claire’s website to find out more.

Download Claire’s updated speaking pack for more on her most requested topics, recent engagements and media exposure.

If you would like to inquire about having Claire at your next event, please contact ashley@mccrindle.com.au or our Sydney office on 02 8824 3422.

Next Gen Dads: Parenting Screenagers and Digital Natives

Thursday, September 04, 2014

More Dads Than Ever

1 in 5 Australians are dads. There are approximately 4.6 million fathers in Australia, with an estimated 2.2 million of these have children aged under 18. The median age of a first-time dad today is 31, so today’s emerging generation of dads are Gen Yers.

New Record Baby Boom

We are currently experiencing a baby boom in Australia, with birth numbers setting new records and exceeding 310,000 per year. This means that Gen Y will produce more children than any previous generation in Australia’s history. While the number of children per Gen Y family is significantly less than that of their grandparents (in 1961 the total fertility rate hit 3.5 births per woman), Generation Y parents are having more parents per couple than Generation X did. When Generation X were in their peak fertility years (turning 31 in 2001), this coincided with the very year Australia hit its lowest birth rate ever recorded in Australia (1.7). Now as Generation Y are reaching their peak fertility years we have a birth rate significantly higher, hovering around 2.0.

Introducing Generation Alpha

These Gen Y parents are giving birth to Generation Alpha – the cohort born since 2010. Generation Alpha are not only going to be the largest generation Australia has ever seen, but also the most globally connected, technologically savvy and materially endowed. Generation Y are delaying the traditional life markers, commencing their families in their 30s (compared to previous generations who did so in their 20s) so not only do they have many more years of earnings before they start their families, but they are also more likely to be double income households.

Parenting Screenagers

Generation Alpha are the first generation of children to be shaped in an era of portable digital devices, and for many, the pacifiers have not been a rattle or set of keys but a smartphone or tablet device. A key role of fathers has always been to create a safe and supportive environment in which their children can thrive and these days this involves more than providing a physically secure home but also a cybersafe home. 96% of households with children having internet access and Gen Alpha are using personal digital devices at an ever younger age. However, Generation Y parents have been shaped in the digital world and so are better equipped to respond to new parenting challenges of managing cyberbullying, watching out for screen addiction, and ensuring child-friendly content.

The Modern Dad

Our past research has found that Generation Y dads are not as competent and confident as their fathers were to change the oil in their car, repair a punctured bicycle tyre or fix a leaky tap, but in many ways, in an outsourcing era they’re able to buy replacements or outsource those services and they don’t need to do all those things themselves. Why they may have lost some of these traditional skills, they have picked up some new ones. Our research showed they are far more likely to be confident in changing a baby’s nappy, doing a grocery shop, buying clothes for their children and cooking a meal for their family.

Busier Than Ever

If fathers are feeling busier than ever, that’s because they are. The labour force participation rate shows that almost 4 in 5 fathers with dependent children participate in the labour force, with more than half of them working full time (an average of 7 hours 25 minutes per day) and yet at the same time, those with children aged under 15 are spending more time with their children, averaging 3 hours and 55 minutes per day. Additionally, almost half of all dads with kids aged up to 17 years old are also volunteering (46%), dads with full-time jobs are spending around 80 minutes a day on domestic work. So there’s little surprise that over a third of Australian men (34.9%) say that they always or often feel rushed or pressed for time, and 1 in 6 (16.3%) feel that their work and family responsibilities are rarely or never in balance.

Next Generation Parents

In the year that the oldest Gen Ys first became fathers in record numbers (2010), the iPad entered the market, “app” was the word of the year and Instagram was launched. Clearly they are parenting in a very different era to any other generation and will be facing new challenges never seen before.

Mothers are the Most Influential Life-Shapers

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Mothers are more influential in shaping the lives of everyday Australians than fathers, spouses or partners, siblings, and even best friends. A recent McCrindle study confirms that mothers don’t just raise their children, but shape their identities and define who they become.

Mum is most influential role model for more than half of Australians

More than half of Australians (52%) say that their mother is the single biggest influence on shaping where they come from and who they are today, and 4 in 5 (79%) put their mum in their personal Top 3 Most Influential Persons list.

Social researcher Mark McCrindle says, “Their role is not just in raising us but in shaping us. The impact of mums in Australia is highlighted by the fact that they are the most significant person in shaping who we have become – ahead of friends, community leaders, other family members and even spouses. While mothers are often thanked for their protecting and providing role in the lives of young children, it is their life-training and identity-shaping that has the most lasting impact.”

“This research shows that mothers are not only nurturers and supporters but for the majority of Australians, they are also the biggest life-shapers.”

Mum influential not just for women, but men, too

While 56% of women said their mum had had the biggest influence on their lives, men weren’t far behind – 1 in 2 men (48%) state their mum had the largest influence on their lives, and 4 in 5 (79%) of men put mum in their Top 3 Most Influential Persons list – the same as females!

Mother, then father, then a spouse or partner

For many Australians, if they were to choose the Top 3 influencers in shaping who they have become, they would list their mother, their father, and their spouse or partner – in that order.

Mum’s impact just as strong for emerging generations

Despite the proliferation of technology that has facilitated opportunities for influence by those beyond immediate family and friendship structures, younger generations report being even more shaped by their mothers than older generations – 52% of Gen Ys (20-34) and 54% of Gen X (35-49) report their mother as their biggest influencer, compared to 50% of Baby Boomers (50-68) and Builders (69+).

Mark McCrindle states, “In a world of social media, technology influences and marketing saturation, it is encouraging to see that the influence of mums has gone up, not down with the emerging generations. In fact with children staying at home later in life than the past, the role of mums is not only greater, but their influence extends longer as well.”

Results based on a nationally representative survey of 1,019 responses conducted by McCrindle in April 2014.

Click here to download the research summary.

Generation Z: Living Longer, Costing More

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

It has often been said that today’s young people will be the first generation of children who won’t live as long as their parents because of the rise in childhood obesity, increased “screen-time”, sedentary lifestyles and the increased intake of high fat and sugar foods. 

 It is true that young Australians regularly eat fast food more than the average Australian, obesity rates have risen significantly in a generation, and based on current trends almost 3 in 4 Generation Z will be overweight or obese by the time they reach adulthood. Additionally young Australians consume more screen time than ever before – on average this total screen time exceeds 10 hours per day.

However, the proportion of Australians with long term health conditions and lifestyle risk factors such as smoking has declined significantly over the last decade and the survivability of morbid illnesses continues to rise. Australians are not only amongst the longest-living in the world, they have seen life expectancy increase continuously for more than a century. A boy born in Australia today can expect to live to 80 years, while a girl can expect to live to 84. Having survived to age 60, men can expect to live another 23 years and women another 26 years. Australians have added 10 years of life expectancy in the last 40 years and this longevity increase is still continuing.

This remarkable increase in life expectancy is the product of public health measures, medical improvements, pharmaceutical advancements, and astonishing increases in survivability rates across all age groups. For example, in 1990, the mortality rate for children this age was 0.4 deaths per 1,000 yet it has since declined by more than half! Regardless of youth trends concerning sedentary lifestyles and higher calorie intake, Generation Z will on average outlive their parents, as has been the case with every Australian generation since record keeping began.

This longevity is not without its downsides. Just because a generation has seen improvement in the length of life, doesn’t mean there will be improvement in the quality of those additional years. Additionally, the costs of funding retirement have dramatically increased in the last few decades, not only because of the cost of living but also due to the length of life. By the time Generation Z begin to retire (beginning in 2063) the average median capital city house price will exceed $2 million and the average retiree will need at least $600,000 more to achieve a comfortable retirement than the average required today.

– Mark McCrindle

Discover this emerging generation at GenerationZ.com.au and see our latest infographic for the stats.

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