The Millennials

Dec 11, 2009

Generations, like people, have personalities. Their collective identities typically begin to reveal themselves when their oldest members move into their teens and twenties and begin to act upon their values, attitudes and worldviews.

America's newest generation, the Millennials,1 is in the middle of this coming-of-age phase of its life cycle. Its oldest members are approaching age 30; its youngest are approaching adolescence.

Who are they? How are they different from – and similar to – their parents? How is their moment in history shaping them? And how might they, in turn, reshape America in the decades ahead?

The Pew Research Center will try to answer these questions through a yearlong series of original reports that explore the behaviors, values and opinions of today's teens and twenty-somethings.

Read Scott Keeter and Paul Taylor's full commentary The Millennials on the Pew Research Center's Web site.

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