Since 2017, TUI Foundation has been conductuing a European youth study every year. Also at the beginning of 2020, a survey with more than 6000 young people between 16 and 26 years was done which was planned to be published at the beginning of May. When Corona prevented the publication in May, the team decided to add some more Corona focused questions and to conduct a second survey only among young Germans in September. The results were presented to the public yesterday. More than one thousand young Germans between the ages of 16 and 26 were surveyed by YouGov for each survey (January and September).
The acceptance of the measures to combat the corona pandemic is very high among young Germans. More than half (52 percent) of them consider the measures to be appropriate. The view that the measures are exaggerated is shared more by male (22 percent) than female (15 percent) respondents aged 16 to 26 years. Those who adhere to the measures do so primarily to protect the health of their the people around them. 89 percent of those surveyed consider this aspect important. Young Germans rate the protection of their own health (79 percent) or penalties for disregard (61 percent) as less important personal reasons.
"Young Germans support the measures to combat the pandemic. They are aware of their responsibility for the health of the people around them. And they remain advocates of a more integrated Europe despite the Corona crisis. These attitudes are encouraging," says Thomas Ellerbeck, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the TUI Foundation.
The TUI Foundation's Youth Study shows that young people have found home schooling and home office particularly difficult. This is said by 20 percent of 16 to 26 year olds and only six percent of adults aged 27 and over. Other restrictions that young people have found difficult: the reduction of social contacts (42 percent of 16 to 26 year olds / 52 percent of adults aged 27 and over), restrictions in leisure time such as closing sports events and restaurants (40 percent/35 percent) and not taking trips and holidays (32 percent/36 percent).
The corona pandemic has brought health policy into the public spotlight. At the beginning of the year, YouGov surveyed the EU's most important political issues for young Europeans in the first round of the Youth Study, as in previous years. It is true that health policy among young Germans has gained slightly since the beginning of the year. But Corona has been able to change little in terms of its fundamental priorities since the beginning of the year: In September, the 16 to 26 year-olds surveyed again considered environmental and climate protection to be the most important political issue for the EU (55 percent in January, 51 percent in September), ahead of migration and asylum (45 percent at the beginning of the year, 41 percent in September).
Another trend is reinforced by Corona: since the surveys for the TUI Foundation's Youth Study began, the proportion of young people in Germany for whom the current relationship between the EU and its member states is "just right" has been declining. While 23 percent of German 16 to 26 year-olds agreed with this statement in 2017, this figure rose to 21 percent in 2019. This share fell from 23 percent to 19 percent between January 2020 and September 2020. At the same time, more respondents would like to see a closer relationship between the EU countries. The approval rate rose from 40 percent in 2017 to 48 percent in September 2020 (46 percent in January 2020).
The full study as PDF (German) is available here.