As pollsters we are concerned that significant numbers of people are today quite pessimistic about Humanity’s future, especially in industrialized countries. One example of this pessimism relates to whether our children and grandchildren will have a better life or not. The chart to the right shows that for the first time in GlobeScan’s 15 years of tracking, more people are pessimistic than optimistic on average across our tracking countries.
Given the danger of this pessimism becoming a self-fulfilling prophesy that keeps Humanity from achieving its aspirations, the GlobeScan Foundation has chosen hope as one of its focus areas. Our Hope Index is noteworthy in that it sets out to regularly track the degree of hope and hopelessness about the state of the world.
Hope has always been important at critical points in human history, and the next few decades will certainly benefit from it.
A Rise of Hopelessness
Overall, people have become more likely to be pessimistic than optimistic about the prospects of future generations having a better life.
For the first time since tracking started in 2001, the proportion of those disagreeing that their children and grandchildren will have a higher quality of life than we do today has surpassed the proportion that is optimistic about the future of coming generations. This is the result of a global trend of increasing pessimism about the future that has been continuing for the past decade and a half.