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(photo credit: PHOTO: PR)
Paul Taylor, a research fellow at Pew Research Center, a former political correspondent for The Washington Post, and author of "The Next America", which examines the significance of the generational change in demographics on the future of the US. He will speak at the Waking up from the American dream session , Sunday, December 7th at 1:30pm.
The Pew Research Center is a leading institute for the study of public opinion, demographics, and society. In his book Taylor discusses the generation gaps in the US and their significance. Ahead of the conference, he says, “To look at the issue of these gaps, it is necessary to examine different age groups. We distinguish four generations of people in the US: seniors, born before the end of World War Two; the baby boomers, who born after the war and in the 1950; generation Xers, who were born in the 1960s and the early 1980s; and the millennials, who were born after 1985. As for the youngest generation, they have to be told that they are dealing with a more difficult economic situation, and they are trying to make their way in it. Culturally, however, they are the pacesetters in many ways. They are a relatively large generation and they have their own value system, which allows them to accept different lifestyles.”
Taylor says that the generation gap is also expressed among American Jews. “We conducted a study of American Jews last year and found very marginal feelings of support for Israel. However, among them too there is a large generation gap, with young people less supportive and more worried about subjects such as the settlements, albeit they continue to support Israel emotionally. By the way, on this point the difference in support is common in the US population in general. Among seniors, support for Israel compared with support for the Palestinians is 6 to 1. Among youths, the ratio falls to 2 to 1. In other words, the support is still there, but the trend is clear,” he says.
Today, it is possible to find many features that characterize the socioeconomic ideology of the young generation. There is rising awareness about issues such as inequality and corporate power. Taylor is uncertain that we know the answer how to translate this into practical positions, such as taxes or budgets. “I am not sure that we know the answer. If you formulate through attitudes to taxes, attitudes to corporations, or attitudes to budgets it is not clear what the answer will be or whether there is a clear tendency, even among the young. But if you formulate things in terms of social mobility or economic stagnation, there is considerable awareness of it, especially among this generation. It is necessary to understand as far as everything related to their economic future is concerned, the young are still quite optimistic, perhaps because they are young and they do not tend to be drawn to subjects on economic or social issues like equality or inequality. For example, their participation rate in the recent Congressional elections was very low. My sense is that this is a very pragmatic generation, which believes that it is possible to work within the system and improve the situation, even if it is not clear to them how,” he says.
The Israel Business Conference, the country’s premier and most prestigious economic event, brings together decision-makers, businesspeople, government officials and academics, researchers, and Israeli and foreign delegations. The conference will provide analyses and knowledge by leading Israeli and foreign economic personalities and policy-makers, making it one of the most influential events on the public economic agenda.
Conference participants will include Governor of the Bank of Israel Dr. Karnit Flug; Prof. Anat Admati, Professor of Finance and Economics at The Graduate School of Business at Stanford University; Bank Hapoalim chairman Yair Seroussi; David Blumer, senior managing director at BlackRock EMEA; President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development Sir Suma Chakrabarti, who will speak on “Business opportunities for Israeli companies in Central and Eastern Europe; Teva Pharmaceutical Industries president and CEO Erez Vigodman; and Intel Israel president and SVP Shmuel (Mooly) Eden.