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Move over Millennials

Nationwide survey of 13-17-year-olds reveals digital skills and aspirations of UK teens create new challenges for Government

Posted by Rebecca Paddick | March 27, 2015 | Secondary

A survey of more than 1,000 UK 13-17-year-olds points to a connected generation in control of their data security, privacy and digital rights and preparing for the Internet of Things.

The findings, published in the seventh Realtime Generation report by Logicalis UK, entitled ‘Has The Generation of Things Arrived?’ pose some big questions for UK Government and Plc.

The survey reveals the daily life of the average UK teen includes five devices and six hours engaged in digital activity, while they expect 3D printing (80%), self-health monitoring (69%), delivery drones (42%), and holographic tech (43%) to be in everyday use by 2024.

As students they want more technology in lessons (75%) and improvements to the IT curriculum (34%), as consumers they distrust social media platforms (62%) and want organisations to work hard for their personal data (72%), and as employees they say businesses will have to update IT and flexible working practices (79%). 

Chris Gabriel, co-author of the report at Logicalis UK, comments, “The statistics show Realtimers understand the value of their digital skills and plan to use them. Two thirds say they’ll build the technology they want for work themselves. Forget how ‘Millennials’ introduced BYOD into the workplace, can enterprises harness a workforce that will create and dictate their own working environments? 

“The report also questions whether service organisations can match this generation’s consumer mind-set on security, data protection and privacy. It seems both the public and private sector will need to step-up transparency, personalisation and big data strategies, and make service reward outweigh security risk if they’re to convince these consumers to part with their personal information.”

Three quarters of survey respondents said that  teachers should do more with technology to improve lessons. ICT has joined Maths and English in their top three subject choices. IT and technology is the top career choice, up from fourth last year, but a gap remains between boys (44%) and girls (14%) aspiring to technology careers.

Only two thirds say the curriculum for ICT and digital skills is good enough, a clear 20% less than Maths and English.

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