Understanding Gen Z
What to Expect From This Dynamic and Idealistic New Generation
We hear a lot about how Gen Z represents a new kind of generation: digital natives drastically different even from Millennials, who already had the Boomers scratching their heads. Are they really any different? How have they been shaped by—and responded to—new technology, recent history, and a shifting economy?
This project—a collaboration between Pacific Standard and Stanford University's Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS)—draws on Stanford's "Understanding iGen," for which researchers did deep interviews with college students in the United States and the United Kingdom, while also drawing on behavioral data, consumer trends, and a series of surveys. Through publishing the results of these efforts, we hope to approximate a portrait of this generation, and an idea of where they're leading us.
Each week, we'll publish a new series of stories looking at a particular area of focus in our efforts, considered from different perspectives. Sign up for our daily newsletter to follow along and let us know your thoughts on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Our research findings suggest that college-age members of Generation Z know they are confronting a future of big challenges—whether they can find jobs or own homes, how they will handle climate change, artificial intelligence, genetic engineering, and pandemic illnesses.
Generational analysis can be enlightening—but it can also be facile and sensationalistic.
Generation Z & Money
How Young People Are Conceiving Their Futures in a Precarious Economy
- How the Foreclosure Crisis Shaped Gen Z
- How Disparities in Wealth Affect Gen Z's Experiences With Technology
- Future Generations Will Suffer If We Don't Solve Unequal Access to Tech
- Smartphones Are Changing How Homeless People Survive
Generation Z & Activism
How Young People Are Organizing Politically to Shape the World They're About to Inherit
- How Generation Z, as the Multicultural Vanguard, Can Safeguard the Future of America
- Why Generation Z Is Embracing Feminism
- 'Stagnancy is Scarier Than Change': What I Learned From My Road Trip In Search of Gen Z
- The Future Is Non-Binary, and Teens Are Leading the Way
- Instead of Generational Conflict, Let's Have Intergenerational Partnership
How Gen Z Is Learning
Inside the New Technologies, and New Values, That Young People Are Using to Reimagine Education
- Are Elite Institutions Teaching Students the Wrong Values?
- How to Make College More Relevant for Gen Z
- How Gen Z Presents a Challenge to Traditional Arts Organizations
- Blending, Nesting, and Multitasking: How Gen Z'ers Use the Library
- How We Can Teach Gen Z a Better Kind of Media Literacy
Raising Gen Z
Lessons for—and From—Parents
- Gen Z's Message to Parents: 'Put Your Phone Down'
- Generation Z Is Far More Nuanced About Tech Than Its Predecessors
- Why We Can't Judge Generation Z by the Standards of Previous Generations
- Parents' Phone Use Is Taking a Toll on Their Children's Development
Inside the Brain of Gen Z
Development, literacy, and mental health.
- Is Generation Z More Scared Than Earlier Generations?
- Have Headphones Made Gen Z More Insular?
- There's a Crisis of Reading Among Generation Z
- Stop Associating Video Games With Youth Gun Violence
- I Helped Create the Internet, and I'm Worried About What It's Doing to Young People
- Can Artificial Intelligence Solve Our Problems With Harassment Online?
- Tumblr Helped Me Plan My Eating Disorder. Then It Helped Me Heal.
How Gen Z Gathers
Community, religion, and new social spaces.
- Community Can Offer a Cure to Our Technology Addictions
- How Gen Z Is Solving America's Crisis of Isolation
- What We Can Learn From the Dramatic Dip in Divorce Among Millennials
- Generation Z Isn't Defined by Technology
- Is Gen Z Nostalgic About Nostalgia?
- Gen Z'ers Are More Cautious Online Than Previous Generations
- Why Generation Z Should Give Religion a Second Chance
- How Gen Z'ers Are Remaking Religion to Suit Their Values
- Gen Z Is the Least Religious Generation. Here's Why That Could Be a Good Thing.
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Understanding Generation Z was made possible by Stanford University's Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) and its director, Margaret Levi, who hosted the iGen Project. Further support came from the Knight Foundation.