Generation gap in Japan

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A recent survey from Yahoo! Japan Value Insight (who seem to have been bought out by Macromill Research) looked at generational differences in thinking for four key generations.

Demographics

Over the 22nd and 23th of June 2010 800 members of the Yahoo! monitor group completed a private internet-based questionnaire. All the respondents lived in Tokyo or one of the three surrounding prefectures of Kanagawa, Saitama and Chiba. The four generations were the Bubble generation, people born between 1962 and 1967 and now aged 43 to 48; the Ice Age generation, people born between 1971 and 1975 and now aged 35 to 39; the Yutori (education with breathing space) generation, people born between 1985 and 1990 and now aged 20 to 25; and the Bubble Junior generation, people born between 1992 and 1995 and now aged 15 to 18. For each generation 100 males and 100 females responded.

It’s difficult to draw any conclusions, I feel, from this one snapshot in time. How much of the variation is just down to simple age differences and how much is down to the environment people grew up in? For instance, it’s obvious that younger people would be more keen on having a portable audio player.

Research results

Q1: Which of the following would you want to have for your own exclusive use? If you already have it, do you want to keep having it for your own exclusive use? (Sample size=800, multiple answer)

  Bubble
N=200
Ice Age
N=200
Yutori
N=200
Bubble Jr
N=200
High-class brand watch 28.0% 29.5% 27.0% 16.5%
High-class brand bag 20.5% 21.0% 20.0% 13.0%
Domestic car 27.0% 30.0% 29.5% 23.5%
Import car 12.5% 14.0% 14.5% 11.0%
Portable music player 31.0% 35.5% 54.0% 68.0%
Smartphone 17.0% 24.5% 31.0% 35.5%
Netbook 22.0% 20.5% 27.0% 28.0%

Q2: Regarding the following statements about fashion, which apply to you? (Sample size=800, multiple answer)

  Bubble
N=200
Ice Age
N=200
Yutori
N=200
Bubble Jr
N=200
I’ve got my own particular preferences regarding fashion 39.0% 41.0% 51.5% 48.5%
I like wearing watches, accessories, etc 34.5% 29.5% 48.0% 39.0%
I want what’s in vogue 15.0% 16.5% 28.0% 35.5%
If I like something, even if it’s a little expensive I’ll buy it 54.0% 58.5% 56.5% 43.5%
I’m particular about which brands I choose 23.5% 25.0% 29.5% 21.5%
I want to wear, carry items from a brand with a high-class image 19.0% 17.0% 22.5% 16.5%

Q3: Regarding the following statements about relating to people, which apply to you? (Sample size=800, multiple answer)

  Bubble
N=200
Ice Age
N=200
Yutori
N=200
Bubble Jr
N=200
I dislike not being able to do what I want but instead putting up with what others around me are doing 55.5% 50.5% 61.0% 52.0%
I only want to relate to people who think in a similar way to me 35.0% 34.5% 46.0% 45.0%
I’m poor at fitting in with people around me 31.5% 28.0% 37.5% 34.5%
Relating to people older than me is bothersome 11.5% 11.0% 18.0% 20.5%
I have friends I have met through the internet 24.5% 26.5% 30.5% 38.5%
I can express my feelings better through email than face-to-face 9.5% 10.5% 11.5% 15.0%
I split the bill on dates 17.5% 22.0% 42.5% 28.0%
I don’t want to endure hardhips even if it’s for my partner, spouse 23.0% 19.0% 27.0% 23.0%

Q4: What kind of self-image do you have? (Sample size=800, multiple answer)

  Bubble
N=200
Ice Age
N=200
Yutori
N=200
Bubble Jr
N=200
Serious 63.5% 56.5% 56.5% 56.5%
Honest 47.0% 33.0% 35.0% 26.0%
Reliable 33.0% 28.5% 28.0% 27.5%
Do things at my own pace 56.5% 64.5% 73.5% 68.0%
Like to keep some leeway 42.5% 56.0% 53.5% 51.0%
Candid 25.0% 29.5% 30.5% 24.0%
Blunt 19.0% 16.5% 24.5% 27.5%
Self-indulgent 32.5% 36.0% 35.0% 40.5%
Self-centred 25.0% 35.5% 37.5% 38.0%
Show-off 10.5% 12.0% 16.0% 25.5%
Mild 7.0% 8.5% 16.5% 18.5%
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