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“Youthquake”, Oxford dictionaries word of 2017 following a politically and culturally divisive year, is defined as: “a significant cultural, political, or social change arising from the actions or influence of young people.”

Last week we examined some of the 2017 Youthquakes. 2018 is predicted to be the year when the seeds planted by Youth tremors in the past few years come to fruition in some off-the-Richter-scale ‘quakes.

This week, The Youth Lab investigates the Youthquakes to come in 2018. We took to the streets of Dublin, Ireland and asked a range of 18-35 year olds what their concerns are for the world in 2018, and what their personal hopes and dreams are for the year ahead.

The thoughts of our local respondents echoed the mass youth global sentiment...
Click on image above to view the video 


“Sexual harassment took a huge hit. People are learning what acceptability is, like what women should be experiencing in a workplace.”  TJ, 27 - The Love Network

2017’s #MeToo movement has not merely stoked fresh discussion on the plight of sexual harassment but catalysed real world behavioural change, felling some of the most infamous perpetrators in Hollywood, politics, business and media. The continued cutting down to size of misogynists and sexual harassers is expected to ramp up in 2018, with even larger targets in the crosshairs. Young people across the world are going to continue holding establishment figures to account for their behaviour and actions - a new, more progressive standard is being established as the norm.

With this, not only will we see female empowerment as a major theme at the forefront of societal change, masculinity will continue its reassessment detox in 2018. A rehabilitation of maleness is en route, in order to keep up with progressing narratives of ‘norm’ and exist more harmoniously within these.


“The homeless - we need more housing for people on the streets - it’s a big issue.” Dan, 19 - The Love Network

In 2017, the personal wealth of the world’s top 1%, for the first time since feudalism, pulled ahead of the combined wealth of the bottom half of the world’s population, 3.6 billion people. Yesterday, Thursday the 4th of January 2018, was Fat Cat Thursday, when UK top executives earn more in less than 3 days than the average UK worker does in a year.

So, with 2017 representing the most inequitable period in modern times, young people in 2018 are inspired to find solutions. This means checking one’s privilege, admitting one's complicity in the system, and using the ballot box to demand tangible change. Among others, homelessness and the refugee crisis are issues becoming increasingly pressing, and young people will be agitating this year for a tangible response from their governments.


“America takes back its decision to announce Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.” Fiona, 21 - The Love Network

“I’d like to see the back of this government.” Donagh, 28 - The Love Network

With the political mainstream seized by the youth - who are majorly concerned about their future, the state of our climate, equality, human rights and more - a new generation of international premiers has been elected. Since 2015, we have witnessed the rise of Trudeau (Canada), Macron (France), Varadkar (Ireland), Arden (New Zealand) and the 31 year old Chancellor of Austria, Sebastian Kurz in 2017. Yet the political landscape is predicted to be radically reshaped by the aftershocks in 2018.

Young Russians, given a choice between Putin and Putin in this year’s presidential election, are risking arrest, beatings, and harassment to secure 41 year-old, lawyer, activist, and leader of the Progress Party, Alexei Navalny’s position on the ballot paper. Similarly, young Americans are being offered an opportunity to answer for the apathy in the 2016 Presidential Elections with the 2018 US Midterm Elections. Being referred to as a ‘referendum on the Trump Presidency’, the Democratic Party is hoping to pull a ‘Corbyn and mobilise the youth vote, and hopefully ride the coming Youthquake into Congress and the Senate. 2018’s political landscape is set to be terraformed by young people - certainly the inspiring momentum from 2017 can be maintained and built on.


“This year, I’m hoping to go to Indonesia to help kids with speech and language disabilities.” Rhona, 18 - The Love Network

In increasing times of uncertainty and flux, young people are optimistic for change and, for the most part, extremely well versed on and plugged in to the issues of the day.

From climate change concerns to hopeful, future-focused dreams for the individual, the personal is increasingly political. This generation has come of age, blossoming into a collective with political and cultural clout, who have a clear idea of the world they want. Ambition, in every sense of the word, is ripe among 18-35 year olds.

Powerful Youthquake’s will continue to shake up politics, culture and society in 2018. Watch out and tune in!

Check out some of our previous insights.
The Farce Awakens: Pepsi’s Watershed moment for Mission Marketing
Not Keeping Quiet...
The New Resistance

The Youth Lab is the insights and trends division at Thinkhouse, the youth marketing agency. 
For more insights, connect with The Youth Lab at

For weekly insights into the beliefs, habits, loves, hates, passions and hopes of today’s 18-35 year olds, sign up for 52 Insights here:

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