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Federal Center of Theoretical and Applied Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences
This article examines approaches towards studying generations. Millenials are highlighted as a specific object of research. Given their considerable inner diversity and non-uniformity, Russian millenials can be considered to be a holistic generation, which differs from elder generations in terms of social orientations and behavioral characteristics. The social self-identification of Russian millenials is examined, while identity criteria for various youth groups are defined. It is revealed that their self-assessment of status is considerably elevated when compared to elder generations, the former being based on somewhat different criteria. Despite the fact that material well-being, as is the case with elder generations, plays a key role in self-evaluation of status, millenials’ self-identification is also based on education level and professional status, which might indicate their willingness to accept the values of a meritocratic society. Millenials’ social capital is developed using sources provided by the new information-communication environment, with said sources being more diverse and attainable than ever before. Thanks to these new opportunities for developing social capital, the latter can be used much more efficiently in various environments. Millenials declare their high degree of solidarity with elder generations, while accepting a considerable amount of monetary and non-monetary assistance from the latter. Meanwhile they are extremely sympathetic to various forms of charity and volunteerism, while often participating in such activity themselves. In general, you can say that millenials are rather tightly linked to the system of social exchanges, while being prepared to assume the role of independent subjects of social activity. This article is based on data from a study titled “Differentiation of youth groups: economic activity, demographic behavior, social practices”, conducted by the Institute for Social Analysis and Forecasting (Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration) in 2019. The sample, which represents Russia’s population from age 18 to 35, consisted of 3.5 thousand respondents.
youth, socio-economic behavior, socio-economic development, social practices, the theory of generations, the millennials, resources of development, social capital, social structure
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