Scouts Australia Project in Review

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Organisations must respond to the times to remain relevant amidst significant demographic shifts, cultural change, and generational transitions.

Scouts Australia is the nation’s largest youth organisation with a membership of 52,000 youth members. The not-for-profit recently commissioned McCrindle to guide the direction of a major Youth Program Review (YPR) through a three-phase project, helping Scouts to engage with the needs and desires of Australian families, their perceptions of Scouting, and what families are looking for in a contemporary youth organisation.

Engaging Stakeholders for Strategic Organisational Change

RESEARCH AIMS

Through conducting nation-wide research, Scouts Australia sought to determine future directions and develop a detailed understanding of the wider community to:

  • Ensure the values of Scouts Australia engage with those of 21st Century Australia
  • Create a program that meets the needs of their appropriate youth target market

RESEARCH TOOLS

As part of the research, a number of methodologies and tools were utilised:

  • Awareness and Perception Brand Testing: Testing the perceptions, attitudes, awareness of Australians and Scouting families towards Scouting.
  • Competitor Analysis: Defining how the Scouts Australia brand is perceived in comparison to other Australian youth development, extracurricular, and sport organisations.
  • Segmentation Analysis: Comparing Scouts families with Australian families nationally and differences in their values for Australian youth.
  • Demographic Forecasting & Trends Analysis: Understanding the factors that shape and influence Generation Z from a demographic and social trends perspective.


RESEARCH OUTPUTS

Phase 1 provided qualitative insights through a series of focus groups with current and former Scouts members and Scouting parents, testing Scouting’s current landscape and the changes needed in the program, thus setting the foundation for the Phase 2 and Phase 3 research.

Phase 2 sought to define the needs and desires of Australian families for a national youth program through a comprehensive national study of 1,078 Australian parents with children aged 6 to 18, asking parents about their values and what a youth program should look like for a 21st century Australia. These results were compared to the perspectives of 1,858 Scouts parents.

Phase 3 featured a demographic and social trends scoping study on Generation Z and Generation Alpha incorporating McCrindle data, Australian Bureau of Statistics data, and trend analysis from McCrindle’s generational experts.

The McCrindle team visualised and presented the results of all three phases at national and state executive meetings throughout 2014 to engage key stakeholders with the strategic changes required to shape the new Scouts program.

RESEARCH IMPACT

The Scouts Australia YPR team is using the research as a key engagement piece with Scouts members and their families. The results have led to significant discussions among members and decision-makers on what it could look like to provide a highly sought after youth program for 21st century Gen Zs.

“One chief commissioner suggested this is the best research we have ever completed. Your work has assisted in giving credibility to the YPR and strengthening the belief of others for the need to have the YPR.” – Scouts


SECTOR-WIDE NOT-FOR-PROFIT STUDY

In 2015, McCrindle is conducting a sector-wides study for Australian not-for-profit organisations and charities entitled the Australian Community Trends Report. Organisations are invited to participate and sign up by 30 June, 2015.

MCCRINDLE RESEARCH SOLUTIONS

At McCrindle we are engaged by some of the leading brands and most effective organisations across Australia and internationally to help them understand the ever-changing external environment in which they operate and to assist them in identifying and responding to the key trends. See our Research Pack for more information on our services.

Goodbye to 2014

Monday, December 22, 2014

As 2015 approaches, not only are new trends emerging, but it is time to say goodbye to a few loved and not-so-loved trends that Australia will leave behind with 2014. If you're future focussed then have a look at the trends that will define 2015.

As 2014 concludes we say farewell to …

1. The fax machine

After more than 30 years of faithful service in Australia the fax is not only in its twilight- most organisations will not send a fax in 2015 and the business cars circa 2014 will be the last ones to record the office fax number! Indeed Officeworks now sells more styles of 3D printers than stand-alone faxes.


2. The high-low dress

It emerged in 2012 and went mainstream in 2014 but is now on the wane. While this radical dress styling was loved by some, many will be happy to bid the awkward dress cut farewell. However while the mullet dress is on the way out the mullet haircut, for women and men, has had a resurgence!




3. The Ice Bucket Challenge

It went viral in 2014 and was the meme of the year- and has raised more than $150 million, but after thousands of challenges and millions of views, it’s time for something new!


4. Creative spelling with baby names

Replacing I’s with y’s, adding doubles and phonetic spelling is on its way out as Australian parents move back to traditional names and spelling. While Jaxon, Sofia and Charlee made their way into the top list of Baby names last year, the trends are now towards traditional spelling and names with a more historical link.



5. The onesie

It has been a fun few years for the one-piece suit- popularised in popular culture, the 2013 YouTube video hit “What Does the Fox Say”, and even as the theme for celebrations and 21st birthday parties (“Twenty-Onesie” parties) but in 2014 we bid farewell to the fad of the onesie.



From the McCrindle team we wish you a very safe and happy new year.


To read more about our forecasted trends for 2015, please click here.

Top Trends For 2015

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Trends for 2015 are a mix of social trends, demographic shifts and technological change.

Here are the top five that will shape 2015, which will mark the mid-point in this iconic decade of change that began with the iPad and apps, and will end in 2020.

1. Reflective country

While Australia views itself as the lucky country, 2015 will be a year of our nation being a reflective country. We will see the centenary of the ANZAC landings track record attendance at ANZAC services as well as the big events at Gallipoli, but not only will April 25 be big in the calendar the entire year will have centenary reflections of Australians involvement with WW1 throughout the year causing us to reflect on sacrifice, loss, duty and the makings of modern Australia.

“2015 will see Australia being unusually reflective. Self-analysis is not part of our national psyche yet the year ahead will see us looking back, looking in, and remembering. This final month of 2014 has been an emotional time for the nation and in some ways it has set the theme for the year ahead. It will not be a year of sadness- just sombreness- the “no worries” attitude subdued for a while. Australians love a celebration and this land of the long-weekend is good at enjoying the journey- but the year ahead will bring some heaviness to the journey, and some healthy introspection as well.”

Mark McCrindle


2. Downageing

2015 marks significant milestones for Australia’s generations. Gen Y hit their mid-30’s, Gen X hit mid-life at 50 and the baby boomers approach the 70 year milestone. Each of these generations is living younger than their years would suggest, and the year ahead will see growth in nostalgia industries, adventure tourism, marathons, Kokoda treks and Antarctica expeditions etc. will boom as will products facilitating mobility in a time of ageing.

“Never before have the generations been as detached from their age as we’re seeing with the Boomers and Gen Xers. Age is just a number for the Gen Xers who were shaped by Commodore 64 computers, Atari games systems and grunge music yet begin turning 50 in 2015. And the original post war Baby Boomers who then ushered in the separate life stage of teenager hood and popularised rock ‘n roll are now closing in on 70 and redefining retirement and the seniors’ life stage.”

Mark McCrindle


3. Generation glass

The emerging generation have been shaped in the last few years which has finessed glass as the new medium of content delivery. Glass that we carried (smartphones and tablets), glass that we wear (apple watch, google glass, fit bits) will be further expanded with glass that we interact with all around us, from multi-touch glass work surfaces to interactive display walls from virtual fitting rooms in stores to head up displays becoming mainstream in cars to interactive display walls in car show rooms. 2015 will see glass coming to life all around us.

“We’ve had to wait almost 600 years for a new medium to be transformed for mass, portable, popular communication and it is happening now. In 1439 Johannes Gutenberg transformed paper to be usable for mass communication when his printing press enabled books and brochures to become mainstream. As radical a transformation is taking place now with glass being reinvented to be the new, portable mass communication device- glass that we look at not just look through, glass that we carry, wear and touch.”

Mark McCrindle


4. Vertical communities

With record population growth comes increase densification in our larger capitals and now Sydney, Melbourne, Darwin and Canberra all have more new home approvals that are units and townhouses compared to detached homes. 2015 will be the year where infill developments continue and where we see more emphasis on households even those raising children’s, living up, not out. Everything from small grocery store format to shared community spaces in buildings rather than parks flow in a society where we move to high density living.

“2015 will see Australia’s population reach 24 million and amidst the record birth, longevity and migration growth is the growing population density of our major cities. The Aussie dream is more likely a unit near public transport than a home with a backyard and a shed. As urban growth changes from a sprawl out to building up we will see “walkable communities”, shared spaces, café connections and more local shopping thrive.”

Mark McCrindle


5. Digital comes to life

2015 will further the expansion of the digital becoming actual through increasing access to 3D printing technology, the internet of things becoming more practical (light bulbs and cameras being monitored from smart phone apps etc.), and virtual reality becoming a useful business tool (new Oculus 3D headsets increasingly being used beyond gaming to being utilised for design, real-estate and planning applications).

“The ‘virtual’ in ‘virtual reality’ is becoming harder to define. 2015 will see further blurring between the digital and the actual as printers go 3D, in-store fitting rooms go hi-tech and conferences and classrooms go video-based, virtual and global. From VR headsets to interactive display walls we’re increasingly going to find it difficult to find where the bricks and mortar meet the bits and bytes.”

Mark McCrindle

Sydney Vs Melbourne Rivalry [infographic]

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Sunday 7 December, 2014 – Melbourne has been named the world’s most liveable city for the fourth year in a row, but what is it about this city that make’s living there so wonderful, and how does Sydney, which ranked 7th on the same list, compare?

Off the back of the rivalry that exists between these two cities, McCrindle Research decided to gather, analyse, compare and present the most significant data of Sydney and Melbourne in a visualised infographic to show how these global cities measure up.

Sydney Vs Melbourne Infographic

Sydney is larger, but Melbourne is growing faster

While Sydney is larger, with a population of 4,879,000 Melbourne is growing at a rate that is 18% faster, meaning it will be Australia’s largest city by 2050.

“While people tend to think that Sydney is by far Australia’s largest city, its population is only 9% larger than that of Melbourne and the gap is closing. Melbourne added 70,000 more people than Sydney did over the last 5 years and based on the current growth trends, soon after mid-century, Melbourne will be Australia’s largest city”, said Mark McCrindle.

Sydney - home to more international guests

Sydney is more culturally diverse than Melbourne – less Sydneysiders (58.1%) were born in Australia than Melbournites (62.6%). Ancestry also comes into play here, with slightly less Sydneysiders being of Australian ancestry than those living in Melbourne.

Tourism is also more popular in the city of Sydney, with 12,753,000 international arrivals last year, that’s almost twice as many as recorded to have visited Melbourne (7,000,000).

Iconic landmarks and transport

While driving is the most popular commute option for both cities, more Melbournites drive to work than Sydneysiders – an extra 105 025 to be exact. Comparatively, more Sydneysiders walk to work than their fellow Melbournites.

Cycling is more common amongst those living in Melbourne, with 18% less Sydneysiders using this form of transport in their commute to work.

The harbour is a huge feature of Sydney – home to the Sydney Opera House and facilitating the harbour Bridge as well as ferry transportation in and out of the city, it is iconic both visually and practically.

While Sydney’s iconic landmark and mode of transport are facilitated by water, Melbourne’s are firmly set on the ground and have a much older history. Flinders Street Station opened in 1854, 119 years before the Sydney Opera House. On census day, 72,862 Melbournites caught a tram to work, becoming Melbourne’s second most popular commute option (with driving a car being the first).

The weather debate

Perhaps one of the most contentious issues around the Sydney vs. Melbourne debate is the weather. Despite varying temperatures and public perception that Melbourne is worse for the weather, Sydney is the city that receives more rainfall – a total of 1223 mm on average while Melbourne receives less than half of that (603 mm).

However, it seems the perceptions aren’t entirely false as Sydney has hotter temperatures, less cloudy days and a greater number of clear days on average than Melbourne.

Melbourne - home to more passionate sporting fans

It would seem that Melbournites are more involved with their sport, considering Melbourne has larger stadiums and more passionate club members! While Sydney’s largest club is the Sydney Swans with just over 40,000 members, Melbourne’s Collingwood club has double that number of memberships (80,793).

Melbourne and Sydney also play different sports, with 9 Melbourne AFL teams compared to Sydney’s 2, and 9 Sydney NRL teams compared to the one Melbourne Storm team.

Sydney home to ‘the best Olympic games ever’

Melbourne hosted Australia’s first Olympics in 1956, however Sydney’s was dubbed ‘the best Olympic games ever!’ The 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney also gained 23 more medal placing’s than Melbourne’s Summer Olympics, held 44 years before.

Sydney more expensive than Melbourne

While Sydneysiders earn more on average than Melbournites, they also pay 37% more for their houses, with the average house price in Sydney costed at $843,994 compared to just $615,068 in Melbourne.

While the debate for who makes the best coffee is strong between the cities, Melbournites are paying an extra 9 cents per cup than the average Sydney-sider.

The verdict

“Few nations have two cities which dominate the national demographic and economic landscape as Australia has in Sydney and Melbourne. 1 in 5 Australians live in Sydney and another 1 in 5 call Melbourne home. There are as many Australians who live in the two cities of Sydney and Melbourne as there are people in the whole of the states of Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory combined”, states social demographer Mark McCrindle.

But regardless of the rivalry, one thing we can all agree on is that both Sydney and Melbourne are global cities, with a rich history, diversity, opportunity and amenity of which all Australians can be proud.

McCrindle in Melbourne

From our base in Sydney, McCrindle has worked with clients from across Australia and the world. Knowing the constantly changing nature of society today we are always looking for ways to increase our capacity to provide innovative social research solutions to our clients, spanning a multitude of sectors and locations.

With that in mind, we at McCrindle are excited to have extended our offering to our clients by establishing an office in Melbourne.


Sydney Vs Melbourne Infographic

INFOGRAPHIC AND MEDIA CONTACT

Please see the infographic for a visual representation of the data.

For further information, interviews, or images, please contact the McCrindle Research office at 02 8824 3422 or ashley@mccrindle.com.au.

Sources: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Bureau of Meteorology, McCrindle Research


Are libraries a thing of the past?

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The library – home to books and information, including volumes of research by those gone before.

For generations past the library was nothing short of a fountain of knowledge and relevance, but for the emerging generations growing up in an increasingly digitalised age, has the necessity for a library been replaced by touch screens and online search engines?

AN ERA OF UNPRECEDENTED CHANGE

It is undisputed that today we live in an era of unprecedented change and development. The way we work, communicate and socialise has been greatly influenced by the extraordinary technological advancements we have seen over the past 2 decades. For example, it was only in 1997 that Google was registered as a domain and today there are over 3.5 billion Google searches each day.

The internet has transformed how we access information. In many cases, the data available to us online has replaced the need to locate the same information in books.

REMAINING RELEVANT

It is imperative that in this era of change, organisations, institutions and individuals remain relevant and engaged with the current trends. Education is at the forefront of needing to adapt to change as the emerging generations redefine learning. School students are still being assessed by closed book exams in an open book world but a shift has occurred among learners from needing to memorise things ‘just in case’ to simply accessing information ‘just in time’.

PRINT VS. DIGITAL

We needn’t look far for examples of organisations that have become outdated and irrelevant due to the huge technological shift we have seen characterise the last two decades.

Take Encyclopaedia Britannica, a trusted source that many depended on for their school assignments, whose first print edition was published in 1768. In 2010 it ran its final print edition, having been superseded by Wikipedia, invented just 9 years prior in 2001. Rather than being written by experts, Wikipedia is written by the collaborative community and currently has over 4.6 million pages in English alone. It exists as an astonishing example of the change we have seen in the learning, sharing and distribution of resources, knowledge and information.

Similarly, let’s look at Angus and Robertson, an iconic Australian bookseller, book publisher and book printer. Established in 1884, it went into voluntary administration in 2011 along with competitor Borders, showing the shift from the demand for print to the demand for digital.

LIBRARIES TODAY

If we look at school libraries and education today, some have transitioned into a completely digital and virtual model – libraries with no books at all – a concept we would not have fathomed a decade ago. Libraries are now being reinvented as engaging learning spaces where people can access information from their personal devices. Amazingly, today it is even possible to complete a university degree without stepping foot in a university library.

Libraries are experiencing significant change and librarians are no longer the only people with the keys to access the information. In the past, data was costly and difficult to access but now, students can access every piece of information within a few clicks of a button. Technologies have enabled greater efficiencies – and so, traditional ways of finding information are being surpassed with newer, quicker alternatives. For example, locating a book on library shelves by conducting a Boolean search is being replaced by a Google Docs search which provides the latest information on any device and in any location by the mere click of a button or touch of a screen.

WILL LIBRARIES CEASE TO EXIST ALTOGETHER?

While digital media will increasingly be utilised and adapted because of the efficiencies that it enables, humans are still tactile and kinaesthetic learners. The process of connecting pen to paper, turning pages in a book, and physically interacting with the information we consume is unlikely to be completely replaced by the digital offering.

Christmas 2014: Traditional Values and Tight Pockets

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

In the lead up to Christmas, McCrindle Research surveyed 1,024 Australians to discover their views on the religious traditions of the season and their spending intentions for Christmas 2014.

9 in 10 Australian’s think religious traditions of Christmas should be encouraged

From angels and stars featuring on Christmas trees to nativity scenes filling shopping centres and thousands attending Carolling events across the country, it’s hard to ignore the religious traditions and symbols that characterise the Christmas season.

However it would appear that, not only do Aussie’s tolerate these religious traditions, 9 in 10 (92%) think they should be encouraged to have a public presence.


This follows a 2013 study conducted by McCrindle in which almost 8 in 10 (79%) said that Christmas was ‘becoming too commercial and all about getting stuff,’ with the same percentage stating that Christmas has lost some of its Christian meaning. 1 in 2 (49%) indicated they were unhappy about the loss of the Christian meaning associated with this holiday, further reiterated in this year’s research.

2 in 5 (41%) Australians also acknowledge that while we live in a culturally and religiously diverse nation, Christmas and its traditional and religious symbols can be shared by all and so should be encouraged.

Aussie families will seek to save again this Christmas

With the cost of living at a higher rate than ever before, Aussie families will be looking to save money where possible again this Christmas, with twice as many intending to spend less (22%) than more (11%). However, in a sign of slowly returning consumer confidence, two thirds (66%) of Australians plan to spend about the same that they did last year (a figure significantly up from 49% who reported the same thing a year ago).

While Australians still plan on saving, the financial burdens seem to have eased since last year when over a third (33%) planned on spending less, compared to 1 in 5 (22%) that will do the same this Christmas. While this rate peaked last year at 33% Australian’s are now on the recovery path, measured by consumer intention.

Like last year, Gen Y will be the biggest spenders, with 1 in 5 (20%) looking to spend more than they did last year (compared to 12% Gen X, 7% Baby Boomers and just 4% Builders).

How Aussie’s plan to save this Christmas

When asked how Australians plan on saving money this Christmas, the top 10 most featured answers included:

1. Restrict the number of presents for each person

2. Only give presents to children

3. Participate in a Kris Kringle gift-giving exercise

4. Get creative by giving hand-made gifts as presents

5. Avoid unnecessary Christmas purchases

6. Not going overboard with food

7. Do some serious bargain hunting

8. Make the most of Boxing Day sales and buy gifts after Christmas

9. Not travel at Christmas time

10. Host Christmas at someone else’s house


Download the Australian Christmas Attitudes 2014 report. Click here to download the full report.

Welcome to McCrindle Research Rooms

Friday, November 14, 2014

As social researchers, we understand the importance of research in informing the strategic direction of organisations. Understanding your customer and client base is key to this – so organisations who invest in research often thrive as a result, because changes and adaptions have been tested in and amongst their communities, consumers and clients. A core methodology to understand customers and clients is through qualitative focus groups – and here at McCrindle not only do we conduct this research, we also make our research room facilities available to others for hire.

McCrindle Research Rooms



McCrindle Research Rooms are fully equipped with all that you need to successfully conduct your focus groups, with a one way mirror, viewing room and recording facilities available.


Some other great features of our Research Rooms include:

• A great, convenient and easily accessible location

• Low price and great value

• No cancellation fee


For further information, head to researchrooms.com, or give us a call on 02 8824 3422.

If you would like to make a booking, please email through to kirsten@mccrindle.com.au


We look forward to welcoming you to our research rooms soon!

Parents Concerned with Schoolies Celebrations

Monday, November 10, 2014

In the span of a generation, celebrating the end of Year 12 by attending a schoolies week has emerged as a rite of passage. However Australian parents have mixed views of how the celebration is played out and a third of parent’s state that they would not allow their child to participate in a “Gold Coast type schoolies week”.

-Mark McCrindle

Schoolies week has become a tradition in Australia, and the norm for how Australian students reward themselves following months of studious diligence preparing for the HSC exams.

Yet parents aren’t altogether convinced of how their young people are celebrating – nearly all Australian parents have some concern with how schoolies is celebrated and a third would stop their children from participating.

In fact, if parents were given the choice, just 1 in 5 would suggest their child participate in schoolies week as is traditionally celebrated, in a place like the Gold Coast.

THE TOP FINDINGS

• 9 in 10 Australian parents uncomfortable with how Schoolies is celebrated.

• NSW the state with the most concerned parents.

• 3 in 4 parents would prefer their child participate in a volunteer experience over Schoolies week.

• Parents hold strong preference for formal schooling after the HSC.

• Fathers (36%) are more hopeful their child will go to university or TAFE than mothers (26%).

• Less than half of Australians say that schools are effective in equipping students for the workforce.

• Older Australians least optimistic about the current education system.

To read the full analysis please click here.

The Duke of Edinburgh Youth Pulse Research

Thursday, November 06, 2014
Claire and Kirsten at Youth Pulse Research Event

It was a privilege for our research to be featured at the KMPG Melbourne Cup Luncheon on Tuesday.

In attendance was Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex, to commemorate more than 50 years of the Duke of Edinburgh Award in Australia.

As part of the Youth Pulse Research for The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award in Australia, two of our team, Claire Madden and Kirsten Brewer were also honored to attend.

Youth Pulse Research

The Youth Pulse Research was designed and conducted in September 2014 on behalf of The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award in Australia. As an annual survey, involving 879* Australian young people aged between 14 and 19 years of age from every state and territory in Australia, it seeks to better understand their attitudes, opinions and sentiment towards leadership, well being and community among young Australians.

The Top Findings

• Relationships and family the highest priority for young Australians today (68%)

• Influence over others considered for greater impact than a position of power

• Change starts locally, with young Australians taking ownership of their contribution for influence on those around them and within their local community

• Empowering leadership styles take precedence over traditional models

• Youth of today optimistic about Australia’s future (55% are Expectant Optimists)

• Nelson Mandela named the most inspiring leader from recent history, with 92% agreeing that leadership is about influence not authority, and 90% agreeing that leaders building teams is more important than managing tasks


Youth Pulse Research


The full report will be made available on the 17th November 2014.

*879 respondents aged 14-19 with 603 fully responding and 279 partially responding.


For more information on research visualisation, click here.

Australia in 2034: What will our nation look like in 20 years?

Thursday, September 11, 2014

By 2034 Australia will have 33 million people and the dream of owning that quarter acre block will be nearly gone. What will Australia look like, how is our workforce changing, will households be smaller and will we recognise this new version of the ‘Aussie Dream’?

Mark McCrindle addresses these issues on a recent segment of Channel 7’s Morning Show. Australia is currently the fastest growing OECD nation and in 20 years time we will have an additional 10 million people calling Australia home. “It’s going to continue to boom, “ Mark says. “We are adding almost a million people every 2 years. And we are the fastest growing developed nation on the planet at the moment.”

Whilst a population boom brings the bonus of size, economies of scale and diversity in our cultural makeup it can also have negative impacts. The pain will be felt in rising house prices, traffic congestion and increased waiting time for public services. The increase in housing density will mean that the vast expanse of the Australian outback will remain virtually as it is but the major cities will continue to expand, particularly upwards, with more people living in apartments than ever before. The cherished Aussie dream of the quarter acre block will be gone, replaced by new land release block sizes which currently average 423 square metres or a tenth of an acre block.

Just as the population will grow larger it will also get older with more people aged over 85 years than ever before. People are living longer and living alone for longer, leading to an increase in at home care and multi-generational households. The rise in house prices coupled with an ageing population will see many families living living together with mum and dad caring for their own children as well as for their ageing parents. Mark explains, “We’ve been on this trend of smaller households for a century. We had 4.5 people per household 100 years ago. Now we are at 2.6 but we’ve turned the corner and we’ve got slightly larger households now, not that we are having more kids, just that we have more people under the one roof because of housing affordability.”

‘Density’ will be the word to describe Australia in 2034. More people will be living in more households on smaller bocks of land with more houses and apartments per square kilometre. There will be more people but fewer people of working age relative to the growing population. Mark says, “We are going to have older workers – the population is growing, Australia is going through a baby boom and people are living linger. Yet the working age proportion is not keeping pace with that population growth. So now we’ve got about 5 people for every retiree but in 40 years time we’ll have about half that – 2.7 people of working age for every retiree”. As a result people will be working longer with many not retiring until well into their 70’s! However, life expectancy at birth will be almost 90 by then.

Australia will be bigger, older, denser and even more multicultural in 20 years time! Some ‘Aussie Dreams’ will have disappeared such as the ‘quarter acre block’ and along with it the Hills Hoist garden shed and enough space for a game of backyard cricket. But no doubt new ‘Aussie Dreams’ will come to replace them – it is the Lucky Country after all!

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