The Movers of Tomorrow? How Young Adults in Europe Imagine and Shape the Future

The Allianz Foundation Next Generations Study 2023 focuses on two generations of young adults: Generation Z (whose adult members are currently aged 18 to 261 ) and Generation Y, also referred to as Millennials (currently aged 27 to 39).

Given young adults’ pivotal role in the Europe of today and tomorrow, this study takes a closer look at how they imagine a future society and act to shape that future. The following three questions form the core of the study:

  • What kind of future society do young adults want to live in?
  • What kind of future society do they expect to live in?
  • What action do they take to help create the future they want — and why/why not?

To address these questions, the Allianz Foundation commissioned the SINUS Institute with conducting a study among young adults (aged 18 to 39) in Germany, Greece, Italy, Poland and the UK — five countries that reflect Europe’s diverse realities on much-discussed issues such as minority rights, anti-democratic tendencies and climate action.

The study was conducted in two phases First, to ensure that the research addresses the real concerns of real people, young adults in the five countries were directly involved in focus group discussions. Documenting their future outlook and their experiences of civic engagement paved the way for the second phase: A representative survey, which was administered between September and November of 2022. The survey questionnaire was designed using young adults’ true-to-life input from the focus groups, along with state-of the-art research in the domains of civic engagement, social psychology and youth studies.

To learn more about what exactly is needed to unleash the civic potential of young adults, the Allianz Foundation invited 78 leading voices from civil society, the arts and journalism to seven interactive Future Labs in seven European cities — Athens, Berlin, Istanbul, London, Palermo, Warsaw and Prizren in Kosovo. Valuable lessons emerged from them, including the need to craft more compelling change narratives, address burnout, create and defend safe spaces and foster dialogue among young adults, civil society and its public and private funders.

Next to the main study, further publications are available:

  • Country Reports for Germany, Greece, United Kingdom, Italy and Poland
  • Future Labs Report 2023: Workshop report with recommendations for action for civil society and its supporters


The authors:

Overview SINUS studies


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