Gen Z Is Experiencing More Stress than Any Other Generation

Around the time of COP26 in 2021, “eco-anxiety” became a widely reported phenomenon. In the years that have followed, people have had to confront several challenges ranging from the cost-of-living crisis to the threats of war and conflict in addition to continuous existential worries about climate change and ecological collapse.

Although the stress of experiencing a continuing polycrisis affects people of all demographics, recent research from GlobeScan shows that Gen Z respondents across 31 countries and territories are more than twice as likely to say they frequently experience stress and anxiety than are Baby Boomers and older. The data show that more than one-third of young people experience stress and anxiety extensively and the younger people are, the more likely they are to claim they experience it. North Americans, especially those in the US, are also more likely to say they are frequently stressed or anxious than people in other regions.


Stress and anxiety can lead to a sense of hopelessness and isolation among those affected, resulting in a feeling that there is nothing they can do as individuals to overcome the big challenges of our time. As Gen Z is highly affected, there is both a need and an opportunity for policymakers and businesses to better engage with young people and give them a sense of agency over their lives. This can be achieved by providing opportunities for them to take concrete action on issues and feel part of a wider community of change agents. While it is unfair to put pressure on the youngest generations to solve the enormous challenges we face today, it is important that youth is prioritized and not overlooked.

Survey Question: Now we would like you to answer a few questions about what you do in your everyday life. Please indicate how often you do each of the following. ‒ I feel stressed or anxious

Source: GlobeScan Radar Trends Report (survey of 29,565 people in the general public across 31 countries and territories in July ‒ August 2023)